Arriva Sapphire

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Arriva Sapphire
Arriva Sapphire 2017 logo.png
Arriva Sapphire SN15 LPJ 1947 Yorkshire Route 110 Leeds Bus Station Feb 2018.jpg
SloganGet there in style with Arriva
FoundedApril 2013
Service typeLuxury bus
Routes52 (April 2019)
FleetAlexander Dennis Enviro400
Wright Pulsar/Pulsar 2
Wright StreetLite
OperatorArriva Buses Wales
Arriva Midlands
Arriva North East
Arriva North West
Arriva Shires & Essex
Arriva Southern Counties
Arriva Yorkshire

Arriva Sapphire is a premium brand used by various Arriva bus subsidiaries in the United Kingdom.


Arriva Sapphire logo used 2013–17

In February 2013, Arriva UK Bus ("Arriva") announced that it would launch a premium service under the Sapphire brand for its bus services in the United Kingdom.[1] It is similar to the Stagecoach Gold brand launched by Stagecoach Group ("Stagecoach") in 2007.

Arriva initially launched the Sapphire brand on four pilot routes:[2]

In 2014, the brand was extended to 11 more routes with another six scheduled for conversion in late 2015.[7][8][9]

In 2015, the Sapphire brand was shortlisted for an award for exemplary commitment to customer excellence, at the International Association of Public Transport World Congress & Exhibition.[10]

In 2017, Arriva Sapphire was rebranded with a new logo and livery, in line with the switchover to the new Arriva brand. In 2018, the Arriva Sapphire logo was updated again, to reflect the new brand. However the original Best Impressions designed logo is still embroidered on the seats of new vehicles. [11]


As at April 2019, there were 52 Arriva Sapphire routes.

Service no. Route start Route end
Arriva Buses Wales
1 Wrexham Chester[3]
12 Rhyl Llandudno
X4 Mold Ellesmere Port
Arriva Midlands
1/2/2E Huntington / Cannock Walsall
31/31A Oadby Leicester[4]
38 Stenson Fields Derby[12]
110 Tamworth Birmingham[13]
158 Leicester Nuneaton via Hinckley
X3 Leicester Market Harborough[14]
Arriva North East
3/X3/X3A/X4 Whitby, Loftus and Lingdale Middlesbrough
5/5A Easington Middlesbrough
6 Durham Bishop Auckland and Cockfield
7 Darlington Durham[5]
22 Durham Sunderland
23 Sunderland Hartlepool
24 Durham Hartlepool
43 Newcastle Morpeth
44/45 Newcastle Dinnington
X21/X22 Newbiggin and Ashington Newcastle-upon-Tyne
Arriva North West
38 Crewe Macclesfield[15]
130 Manchester Macclesfield[15]
263 Manchester Altrincham[16]
362 Chorley Wigan[17]
575 Wigan Bolton
X1 Liverpool Windmill Hill
Arriva Shires & Essex
5/6 Lakes Estate Wolverton
100/101 Stevenage Luton
280/X8 Aylesbury Oxford[6]
320 Hemel Hempstead Rickmansworth
321 Watford Luton
Arriva Southern Counties
34/35 Guildford Camberley via Westfield, Mayford and Sutton Green
101 Gillingham Maidstone[18]
480/490 Dartford Valley Drive[18]
700 Chatham Bluewater[19]
Arriva Yorkshire
110 Hall Green Leeds via Wakefield[20]
163/166 Castleford Leeds via Kippax, West Yorkshire
415 Selby York via Riccall and York Designer Outlet[21]


Buses have leather seats, free WiFi, power ports, and a modified two tone blue livery. The initial pilot routes commenced with a mix of refurbished double deck buses and new Wright Pulsar bodied VDL SB200s.[1][22] Mostly since then, new buses have been purchased, primarily Alexander Dennis Enviro400s and Wright StreetLites.[9] A number of Wright Pulsar/Pulsar 2 vehicles have been refurbished to operate Sapphire routes.[23]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Arriva launches Sapphire upgrade". Bus and Coach Professional. Plum Publishing Ltd. 21 February 2013.
  2. ^ "Where We Operate". Arriva Sapphire. Arriva. Archived from the original on 1 May 2013.
  3. ^ a b "Commute with a little bit of sparkle thanks to Sapphire". North Wales Daily Post. Trinity Mirror. 29 April 2013.
  4. ^ a b "Sapphire is jewel in the crown of Arriva services". Leicester Mercury. Trinity Mirror. 29 June 2013.
  5. ^ a b "Sapphire launched in north east". Bus & Coach Buyer. AT Graphics Ltd. 11 December 2013.
  6. ^ a b "Arriva launches third Sapphire scheme". Bus & Coach Buyer. AT Graphics Ltd. 25 July 2013.
  7. ^ "11 new routes for Arriva's Sapphire". Route One. Diversified Communications UK. 9 July 2014.[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ "Where We Operate". Arriva Sapphire.
  9. ^ a b "ADL in pole position as Arriva confirms 2015 orders". Bus and Coach Professional. Plum Publishing Ltd. 5 March 2015.
  10. ^ "UITP award nomination for Sapphire brand". Bus and Coach Professional. Plum Publishing Ltd. 14 May 2015.
  11. ^ "We're upgrading the Chatham to Bluewater 700 services to join our select family of premium Sapphire routes". Arriva. 12 July 2017.
  12. ^ "Arriva's new luxury buses add touch of sparkle to Derby". Derby Telegraph. Trinity Mirror. 8 August 2014.[permanent dead link]
  13. ^ "Sapphire in Tamworth". Bus & Coach Buyer. AT Graphics Ltd. 16 October 2014.
  14. ^ "Arriva Leicester welcomes report". Bus & Coach Buyer. AT Graphics Ltd. 15 April 2016.
  15. ^ a b "New buses set to be launched on the 130 route between Macclesfield and Manchester". Macclesfield Express. Trinity Mirror. 4 September 2015.
  16. ^ "Stormtroopers travel faster by bus on the new Arriva Sapphire 263 service". Arriva North West. 4 April 2016.
  17. ^ "Route 362 timetable" (PDF). Transport for Greater Manchester. Archived from the original (PDF) on 10 October 2017. Retrieved 1 February 2017.
  18. ^ a b "Double deckers on Arriva Sapphire route". Bus & Coach Buyer. AT Graphics Ltd. 22 April 2015.
  19. ^ "We're upgrading the Chatham to Bluewater 700 services to join our select family of premium Sapphire routes". Arriva. Archived from the original on 20 June 2017. Retrieved 20 June 2017.
  20. ^ "Sparking in Leeds". Bus & Coach Buyer. AT Graphics Ltd. 21 April 2015.
  21. ^
  22. ^ "Sapphire investment brings sparkle to bus services". Arriva. 20 June 2013.
  23. ^ "Arriva North West & Wales – Initiatives for growth & quality". Bus & Coach Buyer. AT Graphics Ltd. 10 April 2014.

External links[edit]