National Express errorNational Express 'misled surfers' over the waves

31 May 2006

A beach towel on the sand

National Express has been rapped by advertising watchdogs for wrongly boasting on the radio that passengers could take surf boards as luggage.

A radio ad for the coach company said: 'Get onboard National Express to Newquay for a weekend's surfing action or whatever else turns you on. There's loads of room for you and your board.'

But one listener complained to the (ASA) after a driver refused to allow his surfboard on to the coach, saying it breached company rules.

Surfboard rules not communicated

The surfer later phoned National Express, who told him that surfboards were allowed only at the drivers' discretion.

The ASA ruled that the advert was misleading. It told the coach company not to broadcast it again unless passengers could travel with their surfboards.

National Express apologised for the error and said its new rules about carrying surfboards hadn't been officially communicated to drivers. It agreed to refund the cost of the surfer's alternative travel arrangements and offered him four free National Express tickets to the destination of his choice.