It is still quiet at kloster banz. The busy visitor season has not yet begun on a rainy february day at midday. Those who nevertheless wish to visit the monastery by public transport can do so by taking a call bus on route 1254, which has been in operation since september. The line is characterized by the fact that there are no empty runs, because the bus only comes if, as the name suggests, a call is made in advance.
Registration is required only one hour before departure, otherwise everything remains the same as a regular line ride. Depending on the strength of the group, a cab will come to the stops instead of a bus. As also on this thursday morning. The advantage is clear in the autumn and winter months: the cab is comfortable and, above all, warm. But only the regular VGN fare is paid; for a trip from staffelstein train station to banz monastery, that’s 1.30 euros.
An environmentally friendly aspect
All in all, we can speak of pleasing figures with regard to the new call bus line, says the deputy press spokesman of the district office, helmut kurz. Because it usually takes up to three years for new bus routes to be accepted by the population. A full 209 trips with a total of 290 guests were recorded in the four months from september to december 2019 alone. With 97 passengers distributed over 61 journeys, utilization was at its highest in november during this period. It is also interesting to note that the utilization of vehicles is increasing, says briefly. In september, for example, the average number of passengers per trip was 1.2, while in january it was 1.8.
"From this point of view, one could speak of a double environmentally friendly aspect: on the one hand, the bus is only driven when actually needed, and on the other hand, the vehicle is increasingly used by several people at the same time", so short.
Cab driver daniela john, who turns into the parking lot belonging to the monastery at the appointed departure time, also feels that the call-bus concept is being used more and more. The number of journeys has increased once again since tickets can also be purchased at the ticket office at the train station. The route to banz monastery is now relatively well received, she says, by vacationers – but not only by them. "The other day, a whole school class even drove up here above us," says goller, she says. She doesn’t hide a curious side effect: sometimes it’s not so easy to separate the fact that she’s on the road as a bus driver and not as a cab driver, so she can’t accompany the passengers all the way to their front door.
To banz without your own car
Another new feature since the beginning of the year is that vacationers can travel to banz monastery free of charge with the guest card they receive on arrival. The idea behind this is to be able to reach places of interest without having to use your own car. "The fact that vacationers in bad staffelstein can now use bus line 1254 to banz monastery free of charge with their guest card is a step in this direction and an important building block in our new local transport system", according to a press release by district administrator christian meibner.