RegioJet pushing trains to Brno

The firm will be cutting buses but increasing rail service

RegioJet will cut more than a third of its distinctive yellow bus traffic between Prague and Brno as of mid-January. This is due to the expansion of RegioJet into rail transport between the two largest cities in the Czech Republic.

RegioJet was previously known as Student Agency, and began as a bus service but expanded into rail travel when the tracks were opened to competition. The service started with low-cost routes between Prague and

Brno, and later expanded to cover other cities.

The changes will come when a new timetable takes effect Jan. 14. Seven out of 20 daily connections between Brno, Jihlava, and Prague will be canceled.

“Our goal is to have people travel more by train,” RegioJet spokesman Aleš Ondrůj said. From mid-January, RegioJet will start operating in buses once an hour at the maximum.

Sometimes there will be a longer window. for example, from Brno to Prague there will be a bus at 6 pm and the next at 11 pm.

RegioJet trains will begin to travel between Prague and Brno nine times a day. In June, there will be the tenth link. “It's a big increase in capacity; we offer up to 6,000 seats in both directions a day," Ondrůj said.

Competitor FlixBus, known for its green buses, will also be canceling some of the new routes it introduced in August and September as part of a large domestic expansion. Spokesman Martina Čmielová said the timetable is not final and there will be a new connection between Brno and Prague’s Václav Havel Airport. The buses also stop in Roztyly and Na Knížecí.

The Prague to Brno route is being reduced the most, from 19 trips daily to nine, but all domestic routes are affected, according to the proposed schedule. Flixbus is more expensive than RegioJet buses.

Flixbus, based in Germany, entered the Czech market in 2016 with routes from several Czech cities to international destinations. Flixbus was established in 2013 when the German transportation system was liberalized.

Both RejioJet and Flixbus offer WiFi and plug-in sockets on their buses. Both lines also have entertainment such as music or video screens, though this varies on different bus models.

RegioJet established a railway division in 2009.

Student Agency, the parent company that operates RegioJet trains and buses, was founded in Brno in 1996. Radim Jančura is the CEO and the sole owner. The services are not sold exclusively to students, and the rebranding to RegioJet in part was to end the confusion.

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