Ride ends in tears for mum of three

A BUS company today defended its decision to charge a woman for a young child on a short journey into Ipswich town centre.Michelle Ramirez took three of her children – all aged under three – on a bus for a treat.

A BUS company today defended its decision to charge a woman for a young child on a short journey into Ipswich town centre.

Michelle Ramirez took three of her children – all aged under three – on a bus for a treat.

The mum opted to take a Super Route 66 bus from Woodbridge Road after dropping her four-year-old at St Mary's School in Ipswich.

But the fun trip ended in tears after she was asked to pay for a child, who she felt should have qualified for a free ticket.


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Mrs Ramirez, from North Hill Road, Ipswich, said: "I felt embarrassed, upset and humiliated. I took my three children under three years – one in a push chair and two walking – on the bus because it was easier for me and also a fun ride for the children."

She handed over the cash for one adult ticket only to be asked to pay an additional cost, despite the fact the children were under five years.

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"I got on the bus and gave money to the drive as normal," she said.

"The driver said for you and a child. I looked puzzled and replied but I thought the age restriction was five years old.

"The driver said it is regulation that one full paying adult can travel with only two children free of charge and not three.

"Basically I was being asked to pay extra for a child.

"This totally discriminates against larger families."

To make matters worse the family couldn't get a seat on the bus and had to stand until their reached their destination.

"I felt so upset I couldn't face getting the bus to go and pick up my two daughters (aged eight and four) from school," she said.

"This caused my son to cry all the way home because he was so tired."

A spokesman for First Eastern Counties buses said it was regulation that a full-paying adult can accompany two children free but must pay for the third child.

He added the company was looking into a complaint arising out of the incident, saying: "We are dealing with matters surrounding the incident."

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