Today is the last day the people of NSW can tell the Baird Government what they think of the proposed increase in Opal fares.
The More efficient, more integrated Opal fares’ report released by IPART recommends:
- Removing the weekly reward of free travel after eight trips; instead the 10 most expensive trips will be charged.
- The weekly cap of $60 will increase by $5.00 a year until it reaches $75 in 2018.
- The Pensioner Gold card daily cap will increase from $2.50 to $4.00 by 2018.
- The daily cap for seniors not receiving a pension will soar from $2.50 to $9.00 by 2018.
A decision to make Opal commuters pay for their ten most expensive trips per week would see a person catching the train to and from work, five days a week forced to pay up to 48 per cent more than the current fare – by July this year.
Some commuters travelling on the Sydney Trains network face yearly increases of up to $959 per year (see table below).
Shadow Minister for Transport Ryan Park has made his submission to IPART which raises concerns surrounding hefty fares increases, the axing of the $2.50 Sunday Fun day ticketing structure and the removal of the $2.50 daily cap for seniors and pensioners.
Mr Park is urging the community to also have their say and lodge a submission on IPART’s website www.ipart.nsw.gov.au.
IPART is accepting submissions until midnight and any new fares will come into effect on 1 July 2016.
Quotes attributable to Shadow Minister for Transport Ryan Park
“We have to tell the Baird Government that these fares are unfair and unacceptable.”
“Hiking up fares for train, buses and ferries doesn’t make sense at a time when we should be getting more people onto public transport.”
“I urge IPART to review the current proposal to ensure that public transport remains affordable and accessible for those in the community who need it most.”
“This is bad public policy that will result in more cars on the road as more people avoid paying hundreds of dollars more in train fares.”