Category Archives: Commuting

Phorego is Launching a Global Social Transportation Network

In addition to public and private transportation, Phorego is building a new genre: Social Transportation. While public transportation is inflexible and private transportation is costly, social transportation will be fast, flexible and inexpensive or free.

The vision is big and the time is right: With slow economy and high gas prices, people wants to save money or generate new revenues. Ridesharing/Carpooling is supposed to be one solution. But current products/services in the market have not been able to address this, because many are inter-city oriented, or don’t have real-time active matching, or operate like a taxi/shuttle service, or mandate a fare and charge a fee. The end result is that the vision is still just a vision.

Convenience and ease of use is the key: Phorego delivers real-time matches to your e-mail or phone with continuous status updates; its street-level matching engine is primed for ad-hoc intra-city use. Safety is another: Phorego lets corporations, universities, governments and communities create and operate their own rideshare groups. Even the general public can do so to improve the safety factor.

Why not pick up your neighbors and get to work in 1 shared vehicle instead of 3 individually? On your way to pick up your uncle at the airport, may be you can give another arriving passenger a ride? How about those working late one night and need to get back home? The college students who want to go back home on holidays? The guys who have too much drinks in the bar at 3 o’clock in the morning? The use of social transportation is endless. Sharing vehicles let riders save time and money while drivers make some extra cash. Roads will be less congested and even the environment wins.

Currently the service is available in USA/Canada on PCs and MACs. Mobile versions are coming starting January 2013. Multi-language (French, German, Italian and Spanish, Chinese) version will be available when the service expands into Europe in 1st quarter of 2013.

As a promotion for this launch, Phorego is offering corporations, universities and communities to create their own rideshare groups for free. Start one now before it expires.

Via EPR Network
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Fretbay Online Transport Marketplace – Making UK Routes Green And More Environment-Friendly

FretBay (https://fretbay.com) the first FREE European Online transport marketplace, providing reliable cheap transport and logistic solution to individual users and companies declared 2012 as a year that will make United Kingdom routes more environment friendly and clean.

While talking to media FretBay elaborates it’s expansion plans of offering UK transporters with a new online system that will provide real time enhanced route planning facilities helping in optimizing truck capacities.

The system will help transport service providers and couriers in optimizing the partial filled vehicles on a given route. Over 25% of lorries run completely empty of cargo and over 50% run only part-full.

Answering how this will happen, FretBay spokesperson explained that the site offers it’s users to post FREE transport demands as listings.

The transport demand can be for anything to anywhere at anytime .The most common listings are the requests for transport for motorbikes, cars, boats, furniture and house hold stuff, pianos, electrical and machinery equipments, agricultural and industrial machinery, horses and full home or office removals . These transport listings are immediately visible to member transporters and they can offer their transport quotes in real time.

The users are free to accept any transport offer at any time. Users can consult profiles of transporters before accepting thier offers. The profile contains rating and feed back of transporters left my users who did business with them in the past thus helping users to identify reliable transporters. FretBay encourages professional and declared transport service providers on site.

This helps not only in finding cheap shipping solution but helps in reducing deadly gases that are major cause of pollution.

A recent survey conducted by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders showed 31% of the UK ‘s 3.5 million lorries failed to meet Euro-3 emission standards. Road freight especially is under pressure, in the UK new emission regulations and taxations could see an average transport service company’s operating costs increase dramatically.
The recent environment talks in Durban have underlined the increasing importance placed on reducing climate change. This build up further pressure on road haulage companies to meet environment friendly commitments.

Though it is difficult in the time of crisis for a shift to environment friendly vehicles for most of the transport firms, however, it is still possible to make full use of trucks capacities to avoid unnecessary trips on roads.

FretBay system will play key role in optimising these vehicles by providing real-time grouping opportunities and by providing loads for empty returns. Transport and haulage companies can consult transport demands and loads in real time and can optimize their trips in last minutes.

FretBay is inviting all UK and European transport service providers to take part in this environmental program and. No subscription fee or long term engagement is demanded.

Via EPR Network
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VAT Ruling Now Makes Halfords Cycle2work Scheme An Even Better Option

Cycle to work is the UK’s fastest growing staff benefit, helping employees to get fitter and healthier by encouraging them to cycle with great tax free savings off bikes and safety equipment, whilst enabling employers to save on National Insurance Contributions and reduce their carbon footprint.

Today’s announcement from HMRC about treatment of VAT for salary sacrifice schemes has removed the final element of uncertainty about exactly how schemes should operate in future.

In response to a recent European Court of Justice judgement, HMRC has confirmed that provision of a benefit via salary sacrifice to employees constitutes a supply of services for consideration and is therefore subject to VAT. This ruling means that from 1st January 2012, employers must charge employees VAT on supply of bikes made available to them under such cycle to work schemes.

At first glance, this suggests that savings available to employees will be materially reduced – but this need not be the case with Halfords cycle2work scheme.

Charles Ashwell, Halfords Cycle2work Corporate Sales Manager said: “The new ruling removes the final element of uncertainty about exactly how cycle schemes should operate going forward, and in so doing, strengthens it further.

“Halfords is the leading authority on the scheme, and we continue to invest in its development and future. We are uniquely placed to maximise savings by working with clients to design schemes which provide superior savings for employees and employers than those available from other scheme providers.”

Halfords cycle2work offers employees the UK’s best C2W savings, and employers the continued peace of mind of offering the UK’s most compliant scheme.

Employers wishing to find out how they can take advantage of the UK’s best Cycle To Work savings should contact Charles on 07720 699950 or charles.ashwell@halfords.co.uk.

Via EPR Network
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Budget conscious motorists could be missing one of the biggest savings available on daily travel – Motorcycles!

Budget conscious motorists could be missing one of the biggest savings available on daily travel – Motorcycles! Did you know that small motorbikes and scooters can achieve well over 100 miles per gallon? How does that compare with your car?

Look around during your commute and you will notice that most cars have one occupant. That is a lot of spare space and metal to drag around and means they are simply burning money as fuel.

Learning to ride is not as difficult as you might think either; a one-day CBT test is all that is required for smaller motorcycles and scooters. Even if you can’t see yourself as a motorcyclist, then you will still gain vital road knowledge from the perspective of people on two wheels.

Switching from a medium sized car to a 125cc motorbike will net you savings on fuel, tax and insurance and in many cases will cover the cost of a brand new motorbike in the first year.

Combine all of the monetary advantages with the fact that motorcycles are great fun and can cut right through the traffic and they offer a solution to modern traffic problems that cannot be ignored.

cbt-test-training.info gives people looking to take their first steps in to the world of motorcycling all the information required from the moment they learn to ride a motorbike right through to taking the CBT or bike test.

Via EPR Network
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MojoCar Client Launches in NYC: Book a Ride Online, from your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch

MojoCar LLC recently released its flagship product, MojoCar Client, a transportation app that allows users to book cars throughout the New York City metro area from an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch, or on MojoCar.com – giving commuters a new option that gets them from point A to point B safely, quickly and easily when they’re on the go. The app is currently available for download from the Apple App Store free of charge.

Once users set up a MojoCar Client account, they can choose to book rides “now” or later.” When a client needs a ride now, the app uses GPS technology to instantly send the request to all MojoCar drivers within a two-mile radius of the client’s pickup location. The booking is awarded to the first driver who responds, and the app provides the client with an ETA – guaranteed to be within 15 minutes.

When a client books a ride in advance, the request goes out to all drivers within the MojoCar citywide network. Drivers then compete for the job by submitting bids in real time, auction-style, with prices and vehicle details. In this scenario, the client takes his pick based on price, car and/or user reviews, benefitting from competitive pricing and a selection of cars ranging from economy through premium, including Lincoln Town Cars, BMW and Mercedes-Benz.

When clients are dropped off at their destination, they can pay their fare directly through the app – using their own device, or the driver’s. A receipt is automatically sent via email. For rides booked “now,” clients pay a flat fee of $30.95 to go anywhere within Manhattan.

Via EPR Network
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Braidwood Associates Achieves Paramics V6 Training Accreditation

Braidwood Associates, the specialist microsimulation traffic modelling consultancy, has become the first company operating in the United States to achieve Paramics Trainer Accreditation from Quadstone Paramics and is now fully accredited in, Paramics V6, one of the world’s most advanced microsimulation traffic software systems.

Richard Braidwood, president of Braidwood Associates, said: “Our certified Paramics Trainer status for the new V6 software is an important part of our ongoing investment in infrastructure and transport management projects across the United States.

“Braidwood has already contributed directly to major traffic modelling projects in places such as California, New York and Wisconsin and the latest Paramics Trainer accreditation allows us to continue supporting US Departments of Transport and private corporations with the most advanced support available in the market place.

“The business is already recognised in the United States and Canada as the leading consultancy in the application of Paramics and the company’s success in gaining accreditation for Paramics V6 ensures we are well positioned to deliver the best advice to our customers.”

Ewan Speirs, Quadstone Paramics Technical Director, said “Our goal with the Paramics APT scheme is to allow new Paramics users to be trained by the most skilled and experienced Paramics experts the industry has to offer, sharing knowledge and building a stronger Paramics community. We are delighted to work with an industry leading organisation like Braidwood Associates.”

In the five years since its foundation, Braidwood Associates has become one of the world’s leading independent microsimulation traffic modelling consultancies. Richard Braidwood has built a business that provides specialist services to 20 clients across the United States, Canada, Europe and Australia. The company is advising on traffic modelling for some of the busiest highways and most populated cities in the world. Additionally Braidwood Associates also works with partners on infrastructure development projects at hubs such as airports and stations.

Via EPR Network
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Ebikes Offer Low-Cost, Green Option For Commuting

Urban commuters seeking to save money on gasoline, avoid traffic jams and lower their carbon footprint can now turn to electric bicycles. Electric Bicycles or e-bikes are standard bicycles fitted with a small electric motor and batteries. Riders can either use their own muscles to pedal, use electric power for propulsion, or both.

The U.S. Department of Energy reports that average gasoline prices across the United States have climbed almost a dollar per gallon from a year ago. With West Coast gas prices averaging near $3 a gallon, commuters are looking for cheaper, greener alternatives.

Many regional transit authorities are facing severe budget shortfalls and have either cut services or are considering service cuts and rate hikes. With driving becoming more expensive and without an appropriate public transit alternative, electric bicycles are becoming the vehicle of choice for urban commuters.

E-bikes are easy to operate and require minimal maintenance. Most offer a riding range that can exceed 15 miles per charge. Riding range can be greatly increased if riders pedal along with the motor, especially during acceleration, and charging is simple. Just plug the bike into a standard wall socket!

The cost of fully charging an average e-bike’s battery is less than 4 cents. When you compare that to the $40 or $50 it takes to fill the tank of a car, the savings are tremendous – a fuel economy exceeding 1200 miles per gallon.

Larry Van Wilgen, co-founder of Empowered Ebikes (http://www.empoweredebikes.com) and an avid e-bike user explains the attraction: “Electric bicycles are fun and easy to ride. I can cruise at 20 mph and not break a sweat, even on a hot and humid day. I can focus my attention on my surrounding, rather than on pedaling and keep up with urban traffic better. That makes me feel safer on the road.” Empowered Ebikes offers electric bicycles and tricycles, including some models that can fit in the trunk of a car or carried onto a train.

Via EPR Network
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Quadstone Paramics Now Provides Integrated Support For Google’s Popular 3D Modelling Tool, SketchUp

Quadstone Paramics now provides integrated support for Google’s popular 3D modelling tool, SketchUp, bridging the gap between transport engineer and 3D modeller. Google’s 3D Warehouse contains thousands of both in house and third party developed SketchUp models which transport engineers can now utilise to create detailed visualisations of a given road network.

Quadstone Paramics’ focus on 3D graphics in traffic and pedestrian microsimulation means a further increase in model detail, aiding model building and helping to effectively communicate model results to non technical audiences.

Ewan Speirs, Technical Director at Quadstone Paramics, “Google SketchUp Integration is a fantastic addition to the Paramics tools bringing powerful 3D visualisation to the everyday user, no specialist skills are required. For over 10 years Paramics has been at the forefront of 3D visualisation for urban planning and traffic engineering, integrating with Google SketchUp allows our users to drive more value from the complex simulation models they build”.

Since launching the UAF (Pedestrian Simulation Software) in 2008 the team at Paramics have seen extensive market pull as government agencies of all sizes look to promote pedestrians as a more attractive means of transportation with many high-profile authorities around the world showing an interest in the software and many new projects underway.

The crowd modelling capabilities of UAF make it an ideal tool for evaluating both existing areas and new proposed developments, such as retail space, sports stadiums and public transport terminals, it is also especially useful for evacuation studies.

More information can be found on their Pedestrian Simulation website at www.pedestrian-simulation.com

About Quadstone Paramics
Quadstone Paramics has driven the innovation agenda for traffic microsimulation modelling software since the early 1990’s. With over 2000 users in 45 countries, their pedestrian simulation software tools have been deployed on some of the World’s highest profile projects, by a broad mix of Federal, State and Local Government Agencies along with consulting engineering firms of all sizes. Operating autonomously as part of a London Stock Market listed company, Quadstone Paramics continues to address the changing demands of the Global Market through offices in the UK and the United States, along with resellers in Australia, Europe and Asia. The culmination of over 6 man years of development, the launch of the Urban Analytics Framework (UAF) Software from Quadstone Paramics brings vastly improved levels of software capability pedestrian modelling the world over.

Via EPR Network
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Braidwood Associates Has Announced That Matthew Juckes Has Been Appointed To Lead The Company’s Second And Newest American Office In New Jersey

Juckes joins the Scottish headquartered specialist microsimulation traffic modelling consultancy having previously worked on projects for some of America’s largest departments of transportation including New York City, New York State, Wisconsin, California and New Jersey.

braidwood

Braidwood Associates, which was established in 2005 by Scottish entrepreneur Richard Braidwood, opened its first US office in California two years ago and the New Jersey office opening is in direct response to the company’s recent success in winning contracts in the United States.

Braidwood is currently providing traffic management advice through its modelling expertise to a number of major traffic infrastructure projects including New York City’s Bronx redevelopment and some of the world’s busiest highways such as Interstates 880 and 450 in California.

Mr Juckes said: “I am joining Braidwood Associates at an exciting time for the business. Our intention is to continue offering cutting-edge traffic modelling and consultancy services to public authorities and private corporations in the United States. There are a number of opportunities to extend our work with state departments on infrastructure projects and President Obama’s recent announcement of a $787 billion economic stimulus package should be beneficial to the sector.”

Richard Braidwood, managing director, Braidwood Associates said: “Matthew has a wealth of experience in microsimulation traffic modelling and he is very well respected in the industry. His expertise is based on providing modelling services for some of the biggest infrastructure projects in the United States and he will be an excellent addition to the Braidwood team. His appointment ensures that Braidwood Associates is well placed to develop the American side of our business.”

In the four years since its foundation, Braidwood Associates has become one of the world’s leading independent microsimulation traffic modelling consultancies. Richard Braidwood has built a business that provides specialist services to 20 clients across the United States, Canada, Europe and Australia. The company is advising on traffic modelling for some of the busiest highways and most populated cities in the world. Additionally Braidwood Associates also works with partners on infrastructure development projects at hubs such as airports and stations.

About Braidwood Associates
Braidwood Associates is a leading independent microsimulation traffic modelling consultancy focused within the transport sector. Through carefully managed growth and by providing high quality deliverables to clients, Braidwood Associates has become established as market leaders in providing microsimulation traffic modelling consultancy services in the global market place.

With a wide range of traffic simulation software knowledge, traffic modelling experience, dedicated professional resources and proven project experience in varying sizes of traffic studies, Braidwood Associates brings together over 20 years experience in the microsimulation traffic modelling industry.

Via EPR Network
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Microsimulation Traffic Modelling Specialists Announce United States Expansion

Braidwood Associates, the specialist microsimulation trafficmodelling consultancy, has announced it is to open a second office in the United States to enable it to expand its existing portfolio of clients.

Braidwood Associates was set up in 2005 by Scottish entrepreneur Richard Braidwood, and is expected to report a fourth year of income growth by the end of March. The company now generates up to 90% of its business from its US operations and the 34-year-old expects further gains with the announcement of Barack Obama’s new $787 billion economic stimulus package.

Mr Braidwood is flying to America later this month to finalise plans for his second US office, in New Jersey, to compliment his existing American base in California. In the last 12 months Braidwood Associates has provided traffic management advice through its modelling expertise to a number of major American infrastructure projects including New York City’s Bronx redevelopment and some of the world’s busiest highways such as Interstates 880 and 450 in California.

Mr Braidwood said, “We are in the fortunate position of having now established a specialist business which allows us to provide a high value service with maximum flexibility to some of the largest road authorities and private corporations in the world.

“I believe that we will open a further office in the United States this year and this will position us well for the expected progress of some key American infrastructure projects. The recent announcement of the multi-billion dollar stimulus package for the US economy by President Obama should deliver future gains for our American business and we fully intend to play our part in supporting the recovery through our specialist skills.”

He concluded, “While the majority of our business is US based we remain vigilant for opportunities closer to home and we still believe that the UK government has a real opportunity – particularly so now given the economic challenges the country faces – to generate its own stimulus by driving through infrastructure plans that will keep the country moving.”

In the four years since its foundation, Braidwood Associates has become one of the world’s leading independent microsimulation traffic modelling consultancies. Richard Braidwood has built a business that provides specialist services to 20 clients across the United States, Canada, Europe and Australia. The company is advising on traffic modelling for some of the busiest highways and most populated cities in the world. Additionally Braidwood Associates also works with partners on infrastructure development projects at hubs such as airports and stations.

About Braidwood Associates
Braidwood Associates is a leading independent microsimulation traffic modelling consultancy focused within the transport sector. Through carefully managed growth and by providing high quality deliverables to clients, Braidwood Associates has become established as market leaders in providing microsimulation traffic modelling consultancy services in the global market place within the last three years.

With a wide range of traffic simulation software knowledge, traffic modelling experience, dedicated professional resources and proven project experience in varying sizes of traffic studies, Braidwood Associates brings together over 20 years experience in the microsimulation traffic modelling industry.

Via EPR Network
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Freight*Bus The Bus That Delivers!

‘On-Route’ is a radical new urban transportation system concept which would see a Freight*BUS™ optimise the carrying of passengers and freight, thereby tackling the problems of both congestion and pollution.

• The Freight*BUS has been designed with a zero-emission propulsion system able to accommodate either a battery fuel-cell system or small bio gas generator to maintain fully charged batteries. It also features other state-of-the art technologies such as distributed wheel motors and completely new inventions, like ceiling-suspended seating and a patent-protected pallet-less lifting and handling device. The ability to turn in its own length & ‘crab steer’ is great for tight fit bus stops & bus station manoeuvres.

• This avant-garde concept requires a whole new way of thinking about urban transportation systems; stakeholders are invited to help take this model to the next level.

A multi disciplined design specialist has come up with a radical urban transport proposal, called On-Route, which he believes tackles the two biggest problems caused by city-centre transport today; congestion and pollution. Hugh Frost’s Freight*BUS™ www.freight-bus.co.uk is an innovative new design that combines a passenger-carrying bus with that of freight haulage with the minimum of disruption to either service. It can be reconfigured in seconds by the conductor or driver to carry freight and passengers. Furthermore, passenger space & freight space can be easily adjusted to match demand.

Frost’s proposal was submitted to Transport for London (TfL)’s ‘A New Bus for London’ competition,’ which Mayor of London Boris Johnson launched earlier this year. Although the Freight*BUS was not the final winner of the competition, Hugh Frost, designer and concept originator of the On-Route system www.onroutebus.co.uk and the Freight*BUS still wishes to take his idea to the next level and is now looking for stakeholders to help him do this. These could be in the form of bus or commercial vehicle manufacturers who are interested in developing the Freight*BUS from conceptual state into a full-blown prototype; a municipality which would consider trialling the On-Route system, or stakeholder investors, such as venture capitalists that specialise in environmental transportation solutions.

“Taking London as an example, the most optimistic proposals put the average occupancy of its buses at 25%. However, our calculations show that for around four hours a day, their utilisation drops to as low as 20%,” Frost says. “Despite this, city authorities are tasked with increasing the numbers of vehicles, routes and service frequency to supposedly reduce congestion and improve services. My idea is to put our cities’ buses to good use by using them to provide an alternative city freight system at times of low passenger capacity utilisation. This could reduce the numbers of freight vehicles on city roads by as much as 30%. By using the buses to carry freight in the evening and overnight, the utilisation of these vehicles would be maximised, offering maximum return on investment (ROI) and substantially increased revenue from the vehicles. However, in order to fulfil this dual role, the entire concept of buses, as we know them today, needs to be revisualised.”

With this in the mind, the Freight*Bus has been designed to allow varying combinations of passenger & freight space to match demand. In full passenger configuration, it provides seating for up to 90 passengers – that’s 43 more than the bendy-bus and standing room for a further 40 passengers. With standing room only on the lower deck, it could accommodate 150 people with 52 seated. Meanwhile, in its full freight configuration the Freight*BUS is designed to accommodate 35 freight pods (equivalent to 35 europallets).

Loaded with other State-of-the-Art Technology

The Freight*BUS combines a number of completely new ideas, patents for which have already been applied, combined with leading-edge technology that is already proven in automotive applications or is undergoing extensive on-road trials.

The design of Freight*BUS will readily accommodate battery or fuel cell technology. The 200mm deep space in the main floor of the bus will house batteries or fuel cells and the accompanying hydrogen storage tanks (if required). Indeed, it is envisaged that when fuel cell technology is affordable, that the fleet could be easily switched to this propulsion system, while keeping the drive motors and control systems in place. Similarly, its re-configurable interior design could even be broadly applied to existing vehicles built with combustion engines. However, it is the designer’s view that the latest and emerging advances in battery technology will make the re-fit and the use of hydrogen and fuel cells unnecessary. Freight*BUS would also feature the very latest in other emission-saving technology , such as distributed wheel motors which can be as much as 50% more efficient that central motors.

With the latest battery technology, an 80% recharge is possible in around 1 minute. This could be done at bus stations or other major stops, with a recharge point built into key bus stops. These 1 minute recharges do not seriously affect battery life and can be performed within the duration of a standard stop. Alternatively, in the short term, the electric drive & battery storage system could be ‘hybridised’ with a small, efficient, clean burning LPG fuelled, 2 litre generator to top up batteries on the move. Adopting the all battery concept will enable off peak green energy to be stored in the vast reservoir of battery energy that would be created by large fleets of the Freight*Bus.

In respect of carriage versatility, seating is suspended from the ceiling and can be configured for almost any combination of passenger & freight space between these limits. This is achieved by designing the seating to be folded away. In fact, each 2 person seat (on both decks) can be folded into the ceiling in seconds. Seats are fixed to the ceiling through special anti-vibration mounts to improve ride quality. In terms of the vehicle’s freight-carrying capabilities, a pallet-less lifting & handling device is key to easy loading/unloading. Indeed, a crucial part of the interior design is a compact, low cost pod handling system, which has patent protection.

Route Consolidation

When looking at the idea of consolidation in relation to bus routes and passenger transport, Frost quickly realised that not only were there opportunities to improve bus routing & linking with other transport services and types using consolidation principals, but that there is an even bigger opportunity to use the buses for freight as well as passenger movement that would reduce the numbers of goods vehicles on city roads (especially light goods vans which are responsible for 15% of all UK carbon emissions from all forms of transportation) by as much as 50%. He remarks: “We looked at passenger & freight systems end to end and concluded that there is sufficient overlap to be able to build on and integrate existing infrastructure of both passenger & freight systems. However, it will be necessary to develop consolidation centres and cross-docks for freight movement, and hubs for passenger and freight delivery and collection. Many of these elements already exist and can be linked into existing infrastructure such as bus/rail stations & depots; haulage/sorting depots etc. Hubs would also be located at major bus stops, and concentrations of retail, commercial & light industrial units.

Frost points to studies which have already been carried out in London showing that the implementation of alternative freight systems, including the use of ‘Consolidation Centres’ in city areas can give exceptional results. One such study found a 68% reduction in construction vehicles entering the City of London for the project, an average journey time reduction of 2 hours, a circa 75% reduction of CO2 emissions, and a 10% reduction in local distribution journey times. The On-Route Bus supports the existing aims of the London Freight Plan as set out of in the Mayor of London’s existing Transport Strategy.

Via EPR Network
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Stena Line Has Found That The Biggest Worry The British Public Have Is Not Having Enough Time To Do What They Want

Stena Line revealed that not having enough time to do what they want is the main concern of the British public. The new research from the UK ferry operator found that 49% of people cited lack of time as their biggest gripe while health concerns scored a low 9%.

Looking at antidotes to stress, Stena Line found that far from dreaming of fame and money, it is the simple things in life that we really yearn for. 28% of those surveyed said that a simple short haul holiday would reduce stress, whilst 25% wanted more time to listen to music and 21% wanted to read more.

The survey also revealed that a short haul holiday causes its own woes – with 39% citing the dread of completing their work before going on holiday as the most stressful. 39% also found air travel the most stressful with 1% citing ferries as a stressful mode of transport.

Lars Olsson, Stena Line’s general manager of travel for the UK, said, “With the increasing stress, crowds and queues involved in air travel we’re delighted that more people are turning to ferry travel to allay their stress.”

“Stena Line’s ‘dutchflyer‘ rail and sail product is becoming increasingly popular as it combines with overnight crossings, allowing workers to minimise time out of the office and finish assignments before heading to the port by train from London or East Anglia after work, sailing in one of our refitted cabins.

“With the credit crunch taking a real hold we expect that ‘dutchflyer’ will gain further popularity, as the cabins included in the fare eliminate the need to pay for an extra hotel night.”

Notes to Editors:
In the UK alone, Stena Line offers two daily ferries to Holland on its Harwich to Hook of Holland route as well as over 30 daily crossings on its five different routes to Ireland (Stranraer to Belfast, Fleetwood to Larne, Holyhead to Dublin, Holyhead to Dun Laoghaire and Fishguard to Rosslare) providing fast and efficient crossings with excellent onboard services and facilities.

Stena Line’s rail and sail dutchflyer product includes rail travel from any National Express East Anglia rail station including London Liverpool Street and onward travel to any NS Dutch rail station. Dutchflyer fares from any National Express East Anglia station start from just £29 per person one-way.

Via EPR Network
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With Escalating Fuel Prices, Global Businesses Have To Face The Reality Of Increasing Costs To Their Fleet Management

Masterlease reports global vehicle fleets have seen their fuel bills rise by as much as a third in the last year, making fuel management a boardroom issue

Global vehicle fleets have seen their fuel bills rise by as much as a third in the last year according to research by international leasing company Masterlease.

With vehicle manufacturers’ continuous improvements in fuel efficiency now being swamped by escalating fuel prices, global businesses have to face the reality of increasing costs to their fleet management.

While average diesel prices have soared by a third in the last year, the story is not quite as grim for unleaded petrol – although globally it has still increased on average by 18% since 2007.

Despite the overall increase in fuel prices, the latest research by Masterlease shows some interesting differences between the countries. The most expensive countries to purchase fuel from are the UK, Norway and Sweden, although the price increases over the last year have not been as dramatic as in others.

At the other end of the spectrum, Australia remains the cheapest place to purchase fuel – although over the last twelve months the price of diesel has increased by 33%. However, the country that has endured the biggest price hike is Austria, with diesel prices rising a staggering 42%.

Masterlease carried out the survey in all 17 countries in which it operates to get a true picture of how much fuel is really costing global customers. The research was conducted in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and the UK.

As well as the global price hikes on fuel, one factor that has a big impact on global fleet fuel bills is the provision of free private fuel to company car drivers. In nine out of the 17 countries, this is a taxed benefit, while in five of the countries surveyed (Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece and Australia), free private fuel is not taxed.

Nowhere is this more apparent than in Australia, where as one of the highest emitters of carbon in the world, contributing on average 27.54 tonnes to the atmosphere every year per person, many businesses are looking at measures to compensate by investing in formal carbon offsetting activities.

Nick Brownrigg, CEO of Masterlease Group, commented: “While the fuel issue may not be particularly new, the relative cost of fuel has been the biggest recent talking point in fleet management and it would come top, or close to the top, with every fleet decision maker, wherever they are in the world. As a result, the continuing volatility in fuel prices has emphasised the importance to the fleet industry of effective fuel management and accessibility of information to help control costs at every stage.

“It is important for global businesses to understand exactly how much they are spending on fuel across all of their country operations, so that they can look for cost saving opportunities.

Once there is an understanding about the total fuel bill, businesses should then consult an independent expert to advise them on how to reduce these costs. There are enormous benefits to businesses that can demonstrate efficiency in terms of meeting these challenges. It simply means more effective measurement of MPG, fuel and fleet costs, and to achieve this, businesses need to make fuel management a boardroom issue.”

About Masterlease Group
Masterlease is one of the fastest growing funding and vehicle fleet managementcompanies in Europe, offering business to business all makes full service car leasing.

With 15 operations in Europe and plans to expand into other countries, its strong geographic presence and consistent branding enables Masterlease to offer a cohesive service across the Continent. The company manages around 210,000 vehicles.

Via EPR Network
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Ferry operator Stena Line offers business travellers a smarter way to travel with the Harwich to Hook of Holland ferry service

Leading ferry operator Stena Line has launched plans to attract the international business traveler by offering business travellers a smarter way to travel to Holland with Stena Line’s Harwich to Hook of Holland ferry service.

Stena Line Ferries have announced they are looking to fill what they see as a previously overlooked gap in the international travel market and believe they have the answer. To this end Stena are offering what they feel is the ideal travel solution for both business travellers from East Anglia and busy city workers travelling to Holland, with the Dutchflyer ticket which allows them to take the regular train service from a variety of locations such as London Liverpool Street to Harwich Port, in just over ninety minutes, where passengers can transfer over to the ferry.

Travelling with Stena Line offers business travellers the chance to quickly and easily set off after a day in the office, and still be able to do their work on the ship in the comfort and quiet of the WiFi enabled Stena Plus lounge. Business travellers will also be able to get a good night’s sleep before waking up in Holland feeling refreshed and relaxed, having avoided the stress of busy airport terminals and long check-in queues.

The Dutchflyer ticket provides travellers with transport to many major Dutch cities including Amsterdam, Rotterdam and The Hague making it ideal for business meeting arrangements.

The newly refurbished Stena Hollandica and Stena Britannica boast onboard facilities that provide business travellers to Holland with useful amenities such as WiFi – so that it is easy to check e-mails and access the Internet.

The Stena Plus lounge allows passengers to work in a quiet and calm environment with the added bonus of complimentary hot and cold beverages and light snacks. Or travellers can put business to one side for a while and take some time to relax with the newspapers and magazines on offer.

Those looking for ultimate privacy can book one of the newly-refurbished cabins. In the Captain Class Cabins there is a high quality Dux Mattress with a comfortable Quadro bedspread as well as the free WiFi internet access and a bureau with a writing case for additional notemaking. Plus the rooms boast a flat screen television for passenger use in order to take time out and relax. The complimentary mini bar also comprises a quarter Piper Heidsieck Champagne, bottles of mineral water, soft drinks, wine, beer and snacks.

Peckish passengers needn’t go hungry as they can eat at one of several onboard eateries and those travelling on the overnight service can enjoy a complimentary breakfast enabling them to arrive fresh and ready to get on with business upon arrival in Holland.

In the UK alone, Stena Line offers two daily crossings on its Harwich to Hook of Holland route and over 30 daily crossings on its five different routes to Ireland (Stranraer to Belfast, Fleetwood to Larne, Holyhead to Dublin, Holyhead to Dun Laoghaire and Fishguard to Rosslare) as well as providing fast and efficient crossings with excellent onboard services and facilities.

Via EPR Network
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