University of Kent

Sep 23, 2020

University of Kent
Location: Medway/Canterbury

“Kingsferry, part of National Express Transport Solutions, has been a core feature of keeping our students and staff moving between our campuses since 2012.

Our prevailing relationship with Kingsferry has meant that our students and staff are able to travel with the peace of mind of knowing that they are in the care of local and experienced drivers.”

Teresa Curteis
Head of Transport Planning & Operations
Security & Transport Centre Estates Department

The Kings Ferry depot has successfully managed the operation of the university shuttles since 2012, shuttling circa 45,000 passengers per year.

The University of Kent operates a free coach service between Medway and Canterbury campuses, in partnership with National Express Transport Solutions. This service operates 7 days a week term time only and the journey takes approximately 50 minutes. This service is only available to University of Kent students and staff.

The challenge

The university requires a shuttle service from Medway to Canterbury to transport students between the Canterbury campus and Medway campus so they are able to attend lectures, many students based in Medway accommodation needed to get to Canterbury for lectures as the main campus is based there. Student accommodation is scattered throughout the Medway campus and surrounding areas.

The service runs from Monday to Sunday. Mon – Fri the service is hourly from 07:35 – 00:00 and every 2 hours on Saturday from 09:00 – 02:00 & Sunday from 09:00 – 00:00. This equates to 29 transfers every weekday, 18 on Saturday and 16 on Sundays.

The response

Daily contact is maintained between the Account Manager here at the Gillingham Head Office and Head of Traffic Management & Travel, Security & Transport Centre and Estates Department at the university, this is to ensure all services run smoothly and means any delays to service or service issues can be addressed immediately.

We offer the students a ticket booking service, this allows them to book a seat onboard their required service, giving them peace of mind that they will be able to get to campus on time for their lectures. By offering this we are also able to provide MI data to the University which reports on the service and includes data such as passengers onboard, passengers left behind due to not pre-booking their ticket (if any).

Working with the operations team we reviewed the location of the campus and student accommodation and located the most suitable stops to utilise on the route.


Working as a Uni of Kent driver was great. I built friendly professional relationships with the students and the staff communicating on first name terms.  It gave continuity to my passengers knowing who their driver was. On occasions like Christmas, both staff and students would enjoy Karaoke during their commute. It was lovely to be a part of. The familiarity of having a set route was always enjoyable and working on a rolling rota allowed for forward planning and a good work life balance.

Kim (Private Hire Driver, Kingsferry)


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