2nd October 2019

X90 service withdrawal after 4th January 2020

We’re sorry, but after 4th January 2020 we will be withdrawing the X90 service. This decision has not been taken lightly and we will be doing everything we can to minimise the impact of this decision on both our customers and colleagues up to the withdrawal date.

We recognize that many of our customers are in possession of season tickets and valid 12-trip passes. These will continue to be valid up until the service stops operating (as per usual ticketing conditions). After this date any unused tickets will be eligible for a pro-rata refund and an on-line form will be set up to facilitate this process. Further information will be made available on 2nd January 2020. However, we will be unable to refund any tickets prior to this date and we would encourage our customers to use up any remaining tickets before then.

The X90 Oxford - London coach service has a long and proud history, which can be tracked back as early as the 1920s. The express service we operate today has been in place for over 40 years and has carried millions of customers.

We would like to thank everyone who has travelled with the X90 and our colleagues who have worked with us throughout this time. The withdrawal of the service is no reflection on the performance of colleagues, and we are grateful for all the custom given to us.

Since October 2016 when Oxford Parkway Rail Station and the new rail line to London Marylebone opened, falling passenger numbers due to the new rail competition and worsening congestion have made the continued operation of the X90 service increasingly challenging. This unfortunate mix of factors include bus speeds falling by 8% on the London road corridor in two years and passenger numbers on the service falling by 35% since 2015.

Whilst we have introduced several measures to adapt to the above challenges, it is with regret that it is no longer viable to operate the X90 service.

The service now makes a significant loss each year, which cannot be sustained by the Oxford Bus Company. We have tried to develop a niche for the service by offering a high-quality service at more affordable fares to better compete in the market, but this has not been successful. Therefore today, with great regret we are announcing that the service will cease operating after service on 4th January 2020.

Again, we would like to thank all our customers who have travelled with the X90 over the years as well as our fantastic colleagues who have made the service so popular. All our driver colleagues working on the service will be redeployed to other roles within our business and we aim to keep job losses related to this decision to a minimum.