A NEW coach service is to link Dorset to London.
Yellow Buses will operate the M3 between Poole and the capital on behalf of the coach operator Megabus.
Coaches will stop at Heathrow as well as London Victoria and run Thursday through Monday, five times a day in each direction, starting May 21.
Coaches will stop at Bournemouth University as well as the city’s travel interchange.
There will also be one journey per day from the capital to Weymouth via Dorchester and Bere Regis. Two coaches per day will stop at the University of Southampton, the Southampton Ferry and Southampton Airport.
The service is geared towards day trippers in both directions and includes an 11.30pm departure from London for theater goers and football fans.
Prices vary, but prices on the Megabus website currently start at £ 9.
Coaches will provide reserved seating, extra leg seats, free Wi-Fi, and onboard toilets.
Mark Venables, Managing Director of Megabus, said: “Staycation summer is fast approaching and the South Coast is a favorite for many of us.
“We are making day trips and longer stays to visit loved ones and sights easier than before and at the same time, creating connections between larger cities as well as airports across England , Wales and as far as Scotland.
“Yellow Buses are a well-respected local operator and it’s great to be able to partner with them to provide this service, as well as to connect their local bus network routes to locations such as Christchurch and Wimborne.
“More and more people are discovering and coming back to the exceptional value and comfort of choosing Megabus coaches as we emerge from the pandemic, with the added benefit of the coach being an incredibly sustainable travel choice.
The move presents competition for National Express, which runs the 035 between Dorset and Victoria.
Yellow Buses provided this service until 2020, when National Express purchased the coach operator from Fareham Lucketts and took the service in-house.
David Squire, Managing Director of Yellow Buses, said: “As a local operator of bus services in the agglomeration of Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole and in South Dorset it is great for the local operator to be able work with Megabus to provide the services.
“Megabus offers excellent service and like us expect the highest standards from their drivers, so you can be sure you have a great experience when you travel with us. The drivers are all local in and around Bournemouth so always have help and advice for anyone visiting the area for the first time.
“With the provision of connecting tickets for the local service from Bournemouth to Christchurch and Wimborne, customers will be able to purchase a single ticket for their journey. We will also be selling Megabus tickets in our travel shop in Bournemouth. ”