Bus prices change without notification

I stood at the bus stop today waiting to head off to the cinema, and not the usual one which meant I had to check if I would still be paying 80p, according to the sign I was. I also wanted to check because I knew the price was rising soon.

So I wasn’t that surprised when I got on the bus and the driver said that it was now £1 instead of 80p.


I paid but politely pointed out that the sign stated it was now a pound. That sign was stuck to the front of the bus. “No, the sign at the bus stop says it’s still 80p” I said, only to be greeted by a blank stare a point to the front of the bus.

I wonder if the sale of goods act covers the bus service. For the price of the service was clearly displayed as 80p, showing a different price on the front of the bus doesn’t automatically override the price they are displaying at the point of sale, the bus stop itself. Surely the company should have replaced all the bus stop signs before implementing the price increase.

That said, what could I do? I paid the money and there is only one Bus Company with one service at my house.

9 comments on “Bus prices change without notification”

  1. ghani Reply

    I’m so annoyed with LRT for constantly raising their prices — i’ve only lived in Edinburgh for 2.5 years, but in that time the cost of one ticket has raised three times! I don’t know if it’s their employees constantly striking causing the problem or just fuel costs, but “affordable” public transport is certainly making a turn for the worst in Edinburgh.

  2. Simone Reply

    I will be in Edinburgh in less than 2 weeks so thanks for this info Richard. Do you have like a day bus pass like we do here in London, or you pay as you ride? What about a return journey?

  3. Simone Reply

    If I see you on a bus and I’ll say hi to you, dont be shocked eh Richard? I am just a Filmstalker. 😉 (Pun intended)

    I am very excited to see Edinburgh, funny that in New York they have this week as Tartan Week- youve heard of it have you Rich?

  4. Lee Reply

    What applies here is the Price Markings Order 2004. Having been in retail for a few years it was drilled into us, only then it was the Price Markings Act 1974.

    Under the 1974 act (I left retail long before 2004, so don’t know what still applies):

    A price displayed is an offer for sale, not a contract of sale. If, at the time of sale, you are made aware of an incorrectly marked item this is deemed as BEFORE the point of contract and the sale can be refused by the vendor.

    Where scanners are involved if an item is scanned and the price is not queried by the operator then you can make the claim as the operator, on behalf of the company, has been deemed to accept the sale of the item. When this acceptance took place I’m not sure, it may have been scanning the next item or asking for payment.

    However, company policy for Morrisons while I was with them was if there is any discrepency between the SEL and the scan, it’s the lowest one that goes, regardless of the law saying the sale does not have to be accepted if the error is pointed out. The same went for weighed items, if the roller display (giving £/lb) did not match the scales the customer got the item re-priced. Even though the contract point was at the till, not at the counter.

    M&S policy is to scan twice if it scans lower than ticket price, if it comes back at too low a price twice then the customer gets it for less, regardless of the difference from the ticket price. M&S are under no obligation to sell an item at all if the price is queried by staff, but they do it for goodwill, as will most companies.

    Now, when I bought my PSP from HMV it was scanned, and payment asked for. I was not alerted to an incorrectly displayed price, so I had the right to the lower price. Well, certainly under the 1974 Act, but I would have argued it anyway had it not been accepted.

    This could have changed since 2004 when the last update came in…

  5. Richard Brunton Reply

    That’s interesting Lee, since the Sale of Goods Act revised clearly states that the price displayed is the price that you must sell to the customer. This ensures that if the retailer displays a lower price at the item and claims another at the till, you can get the lower price displayed.

  6. Lee Reply
  7. Richard Reply

    Lee, apologies, you are right. I mean the Consumer Protection Act…

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