National Express plans more buses

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The Independent Online

National Express said the tough economic climate was encouraging passengers to seek cheaper methods of travel as it laid out ambitions to grow its UK bus business.

The group said it planned to add 120 new buses to its West Midlands fleet this year and draw in more customers with a new marketing campaign, as there was evidence the UK recession had encouraged passengers to seek "more cost effective" modes of transport. The company said it would also add routes to its coach businesses and draw in customers with new special offer fares.

The positive outlook came as the group posted a 26 per cent rise in pre-tax profits to £95.5m in the six months to 30 June after a 6 per cent increase in revenues to £1.1bn.