Monday, 9 September 2013

30: Cardiff - Newport

The 30 connects Wales's gleaming (in parts) capital with the not-so-gleaming Newport. The route is operated jointly by two municipals, Cardiff Bus and Newport Bus. The above map is of the Cardiff bit of the route. Newport lets the side down by not producing a map for their section. I do wonder why. Click here to discover other bus routes in Wales.


Cardiff has only been a capital city since 1955. It's come a long way since then though and surely deserves more tourists than it actually gets. Those who do make it here will will find plenty to see, including the National Museum. See Cardiff's official tourism site for more details.

By law, any article that mentions Cardiff must be accompanied by a picture of this building. Happy to oblige.

The 30 leaves from stand F1 at Cardiff Central Station. Like Barnsley, Cardiff is sensible enough to have its main bus station right next to the railway station.

On the way out of Cardiff, keep an eye out for a few mini-essays disguised as road signs. I challenge anyone to absorb all of this information in the few seconds you get while travelling past!


Newport, it has to be said, has seen better days. Relatives of mine who live just up the road are always telling me to avoid Newport. But then they always were a bit stuck up! It's a place with a rich history, particularly in the 19th Century democracy movement, known as chartism. The desires of ordinary folk who wished to be treated with respect were met with deadly violence in the Newport Rising of 1839. While here in Newport, why not visit the famous transporter bridge over the River Usk or take a stroll in Belle Vue Park?

We don't have a map of the route the 30 takes in Newport, because Newport Bus, owned by the local council, can't be bothered to produce one. The 30 back to Cardiff leaves from stand 13 at the bus station:


See the full timetable on Cardiff Bus's website here.

Here are the live scheduled departure times from:
Cardiff Central Station, stop F1
Newport Bus Station, stand 13


Here's where it gets complicated. As the 30 is shared between Cardiff Bus and Newport Bus, the fare you pay depends on who operates the particular bus you board. The timetable makes it clear who runs which journeys.

If travelling with Cardiff Bus, then a single ticket end-to-end is £2.10. A Day To Go ticket is £3.40, valid on all Cardiff Buses (unless you're going to Barry) for a day.

If travelling with Newport Bus, then a single ticket will set you back £2.00. A City Day Plus is £3.50, but will get you as far east as Chepstow.

Both companies accept Plusbus tickets for the Cardiff and Newport zones. You can buy a Plusbus with your train ticket to or from Cardiff or Newport.

There is a ticket that is valid throughout on both companies' buses: The Network Dayrider. Newport Bus apparently accept it, but don't mention it on their website. Cardiff Bus charge these prices for it:

... and if you buy it on a Stagecoach bus, you'll pay a bit more. Still great value for a ticket that's valid over a very wide area:


Map of the 30 and major connecting routes. Not to scale. Red routes are operated by either Cardiff Bus or Newport Bus. Green routes are run by other operators.

From Cardiff Bus Station, you have local services in all directions operated by Cardiff Bus. See their network map here. You also have some regional routes:

Right next to the bus station in Cardiff is Cardiff Central railway station. Click for live departures, departure list, fares.

From Newport bus station, you can catch buses locally with Newport Bus. Plus there are some longer distance services:

Newport railway station is a short walk away from the bus station. Click for live departures, departure list, fares.


Newport Bus also run a faster version of the 30, the X30. It's a bit quicker and you can use your Newport Bus City Day Plus ticket on it, as well as the Network Dayrider.

You can also catch a train between Cardiff and Newport. There are at least 6 trains an hour Mon-Sat daytimes. An adult single is £4.60 and an off-peak day return is £5.00 (travel after 0845 weekdays, anytime weekends). More details at the National Rail website.

All of the information in this post is correct at the time of writing, but please check the relevant links before travelling.

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