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Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Letter Of Complaint To Malta Public Transport

Malta Public Transport
Mdina Road,
Qormi, Malta
Phone: +356 2122 2000
Malta is a rather small island with a sizeable network of buses, but the buses rarely run on time and when they finally arrive, they are normally packed to the gills with people and with nowhere to sit, even for the disabled. There are usually three disabled seats, but they are normally occupied by young, lazy people who never offer their seat to those who may need it more than they do.

Their website and app look great on the surface, but they either do not work, are impossible to navigate, and/or have incorrect information.

When we arrived on the island, we called for a taxi from the port to our Airbnb apartment about 25 minutes (6-7 miles) away, but we were told "there are no taxis available, maybe in an hour", so we walked 30 minutes into downtown Valletta and finally found a bus. It was crammed full of people and with our two backpacks and a suitcase, were forced to stand for the hour long journey with a rude driver who flew around the very windy road, throwing us from side to side and re-injuring our already painful shoulders, three out of four with torn rotator cuffs.

I sent them the following email:
"You need to update the timetables on your website because they are wrong and do not coincide with those posted at bus stops. Your Journey Planner does not work at all, either on your website or your app, so how do you expect tourists to navigate Malta with so little and such poor information.
I am a disabled veteran and we waited for the scheduled 1638 (4:38PM) #45 (Valletta-Bugibba) bus in Mosta last night for over an hour, well past the scheduled arrival of the next #45 bus at 1708 (5:08PM). We finally took another bus to the bus terminal in Bugibba and walked 20 minutes to our apartment rather than wait for the #45 bus that might never show up.
You should be ashamed of the terrible state of your website and the schedule inconsistencies of your transportation services. As a retired US Air Force transportation officer, I would be fired immediately if such discrepancies occurred on my watch and under my command.
You can read my review of Malta Public Transport on my popular travel blog:
We waited again to get home this evening in Mdina for well over 45 minutes for a bus that was scheduled to arrive at 1645 (4:45PM). We saw the bus arrive before its scheduled departure time across the street from the bus stop where we were waiting, but the posted departure at our stop had mysteriously changed to 1715 (5:15PM) even though the bus sat empty across the street. We finally went and asked the driver if his was the bus for Bugibba and he confirmed that it was, graciously allowing us to board even though it was at the arrival stop, not the departure stop.

Some simple fixes could improve customer service immensely. I will not detail them here, but the poorly functioning website and app would be a great place to start. There is also something known as "GPS" that could be installed on buses to give customers real time information on location and arrival times, allowing customers to do something productive while they wait rather than standing there waiting for a bus that may or may not show up.

CombatCritic Gives Malta Public Transport 3 Bombs Out Of 10 ... BOOAH! ... More Bombs Are Better!

Three Bombs Equates To:
Translation for Civilians: "Situation Normal, All Fucked Up"

PS - Malta Public Transport never did reply to my online submission, not surprising based on the state of their website/app and questionable customer service (they are civil servants after all - "good enough for government work"). We also had several more delays of an hour or more where buses either skipped a route entirely (admitted by a driver), were stuck in traffic, or for some other sad excuse. Our experience on the Island of Gozo was much better though with buses running like clockwork, so there is room for efficiency elsewhere in the system.

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Title: Letter Of Complaint To Malta Public Transport

Key Words: Malta Public Transport, Malta, public, transport, transportation, schedule, disruption, bus, busses, Yelp, YouTube, CombatCritic, TravelValue, travel, value, Wall of Shame

Translation for Civilians: FUBAR = "F***ed Up Beyond All Repair"

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