No-one likes to raise public transport fares, especially when so many are reliant on this service. But these costs have increased so rail users can travel in new trains on upgraded track and use upgraded stations.

The approach of the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) is to raise fares equally for both bus and rail users. It seems doubly unfair in raising fares on bus users who cannot benefit from the new trains when their own service will receive little service improvement. In effect, increased bus fares are being used to pay for increased rail costs.

WgtnBusReviewGraphicIt is equally unfair to raise bus fares when the GWRC continues to give rail users much cheaper fares through monthly rail passes that are not available to bus users. The GWRC also appears to ignore that many bus users are our most vulnerable, the disabled, unemployed and children, who have little money and little choice.

Continuing to raise the travel costs to these people when there are fairer alternatives seems almost heartless. An increase on rail monthly passes would generate more than enough funding to enable the GWRC to not increase the 1 – 3 Zone tickets that are used by bus commuters. This option was not considered . . . but it should be. It is simply not fair to increase the cost to bus users to pay for rail user costs.

Make a submission to the GWRC Annual Plan and tell them what you think.
Here are the facts and supporting evidence.