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Manchester

Updated: 5pm Wednesday 16 September

📓 Schools are back and many people have returned to work after the summer.

This means more people are travelling on public transport, with less space than usual (due to social distancing). There is also more traffic on Greater Manchester's roads.

Everyone has a part to play in how and when they make a journey.

Use the information and advice below to help you. It might mean travelling at a different and quieter time, going by a different route or making your trip by a different mode of transport.

It will help keep Manchester and Greater Manchester moving. 👍


🟢 Before 7am - Quiet

There is sufficient space to travel on buses, trams and trains before 7am.

Roads in Manchester have also been quieter during this period. If your employer offers flexible working then making a trip at this time will be easier ✔️.

Tips:

  • Before leaving home, plan your journey. Check the live status of your bus, tram or train here. Some transport operators have travel apps and live capacity information. If driving, check before you start the engine - you may find a different route to normal is quicker - plan ahead! Further tips can be found here.

  • Cycling and walking for shorter journeys may be quicker (and healthier). Find out more here


🔴 Between 7am and 9am - Very Busy

If you can, avoid travelling during this period.

Leave this time slot free for children and students that need to travel to get to school, college or university. There will be less space on all public transport services and the roads, so if you can be flexible then avoid travelling during these times.

Tips

The map below shows the areas of expected higher public transport use and congestion on the roads between 7am and 9am. Avoid travelling during this time and in these areas if you can to help students get to school safely and keep everyone moving.

Click on the highlighted areas to see which services are expected to be very busy. ⬇️


🟢 Between 9am and 3pm - Quiet

Travel advice and tips

  • There is more space on public transport during this period but also consider cycling 🚴 and walking 🚶.

  • Cycling and walking for shorter journeys may be quicker – capacity on public transport is still reduced due to social distancing.

  • Remember that buses, trams and trains will be very busy from 3pm as schools, colleges and the universities finish for the day. If you can be flexible, then avoid travelling after 3pm to help keep everyone moving.


🟠 Between 3pm and 4pm - Busy

School's out...

Pupils and students will be travelling home during this time so there will be less space on all public transport services and on the roads. If you can be flexible then avoid travelling at this time to help keep everyone moving 👍

Tips

The below map shows the areas of expected higher public transport use and congestion on the roads between 3pm and 4pm. Avoid travelling during this time and in these areas to help students leave school and college safely and easily.

Click on the highlighted areas to see which services are expected to be very busy. ⬇️


🔴 Between 4pm and 7pm - Very busy

If you can travel flexibly, avoid this period.

The evening peak, between 4pm and 7pm, is the busiest part of the day on Manchester's roads and public transport.

Public transport passenger numbers and road journeys have increased since July and will only increase further once schools return and people get back to work in September.

There may not be space available on some buses, trams and trains with social distancing in place, so you may have to wait longer for a service. Re-time your journey to avoid this busy period if possible.

To avoid being caught in traffic, re-time or re-route your journey to save yourself being stuck behind the wheel. Travel after 7pm if possible, especially on Great Ancoats Street in the city centre.

Tip

  • Cycling 🚴 and walking 🚶 for shorter journeys may be quicker at this time than public transport or driving.

🟢 After 7pm - Quiet

It's really important for people who are going to work, or those who are going out for a social occasion, to think about how they are going to travel and especially how they are going to get home afterwards. Some buses, trams and trains don't operate as late as they used to and many services don't operate after 11pm 👇.

Travel advice

If you travel by public transport bookmark these links to plan your route home or follow the taxi/private hire advice:

  • Check your bus 🚌 journey home here.
  • Check your tram 🚈 journey home here.
  • Check your train 🚄 journey home here.
  • 🚕 Pre-book a private hire or take a taxi. Store taxi and private hire phone numbers or download apps before leaving home.

Service times will change depending on the day - for live bus, tram and train times check here.


Cycling 🚴 and Walking 🚶 - Quiet all day! ✅

Cycling and walking into and around Manchester city centre has been made even easier. Several roads are now vehicle-free and some pedestrian areas have been extended to give you more space to move around.

🚶 Walking around the city centre

Walk like a Mancunian...

More people are walking and cycling in Manchester. Several pavements and walking routes have been extended in the city centre to help you make your journey on foot. So far, more space for people on foot has been made on the following roads to allow for enhanced social distancing:

  • Ducie Street between A6 London Road and Piccadilly approach
  • Princess Street between Mosley Street and Whitworth Street.
  • Deansgate between St Mary's Gate and King Street.
  • Blackfriars Street between Chapel Street and Deansgate (travelling from Chapel Street towards Deansagate only).
  • Thomas Street (Northern Quarter).
  • Stevenson Square (Northern Quarter).
  • Withy Grove between Corporation Street and Dantzic Street
  • Blossom Street between Henry Street about Sherratt Street

🚴 Cycling into and around the city centre

Get on your bikes and ride!

Cycling is a quick and reliable form of transport to reach and move around the city centre.

Whether heading to work, to school or out with friends for lunch, we want your bike to be secure so you don't have to worry about it.

Our cycle hub map below shows the safe and secure cycle parking facilities in Manchester city centre. Click on the icons for further information.

There is also a more detailed map available showing cycle routes and more on-street cycle parking. Click here for more information

Further cycling tips can be found here