As the country celebrates Transport Month, passengers in Mamelodi east of Pretoria are benefiting from an improved bus service as a result of the introduction of Autopax Bus Service in the township.
Autopax Passenger Services (SOC) Limited, is a subsidiary of the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) and operates three state-of-the-art bus services, the luxury service (Translux), semi luxury service brand (City to City) and special hire service brand (Autopax Charters utilizing City to City and Translux Buses)
Currently, Autopax has a fleet of over 555 buses that provides safe and reliable feeder and distribution services to cities and municipalities in rural areas.
Recently, Autopax took over routes that were operated by private company Public Utility Transport Corporation (Putco) in Mamelodi, Vosloorus (East Rand) and Evaton (Vaal).
One of the many commuters benefiting from the service is 29-yearl-old Matlhodi Motsoko from Mamelodi Extension 5.
Motsoko used to spend over two hours on the road going to work, but thanks to Autopax buses she says it only takes her an hour to get to work.
Motsoko leaves the Mamelodi bus depot at 6h30 in the morning and arrives before 7h30 to start working at Queenswood, just outside the Pretoria City Centre.
“I used to get to work late almost every day, but since the new Autopax buses, the service has improved and I’ve never been late since I started using them.”
She said the buses are punctual, clean and reliable.
“We’ve never had a breakdown in the morning and even in the afternoon, these buses are in a good condition and are safer than the previous ones. The service is affordable. I’m able to save some money though it’s not much, but the little I’m able to save makes a difference.”
She added that she is now able to spend more time with her family because the buses are punctual.
As an added service, different buses go into parts of Mamelodi to pick up passengers and drop them off at the depot. Something that Motsoko said saves her time because it cuts the walking time from her house to the depot.
Though she is happy with the service, she says Autopax can improve on the ticketing service and install machines that print ticket as soon as the passenger pays.