ChCh Bus Fares Jump 10%


Bus fares for greater Christchurch and Timaru and Christchurch’s Diamond Harbour ferry service will increase by around 10 per cent from August 1.

The decision was made at today’s Environment Canterbury Commissioners’ annual plan and rates-setting meeting.

The meeting blames the fare rise on NZTA’s new requirement to recoup at least 50% of the cost of running public transport services from fares as well as the GST increase in October (even though this applies from August- how does that work?) and the 10% rise in the cost of diesel in the six months to the end of May.

Currently Christchurch and Timaru’s Metro services fares contribute around 45 per cent to the cost of running the service. The remainder is split between targeted rates and central government grants from the NZTA.

The 10 per cent increase would result in a cost recovery from fares of 52%.
The ARC is yet to determine what impact the NZTA requirement will have on Auckland fares.

The council claims last fare increase in July 2008 of around 10% didn’t reduce the number of people using Metro. “Given the current economic pressures and the costs of running a private car and daily parking issues, we are not anticipating a significant change in patronage with the proposed increase,” said Wayne Holton-Jeffreys, acting director operations, Environment Canterbury.

Examples of the proposed fare increases:
Christchurch city/ zone 1: Adults in Christchurch currently pay $2.80 cash fare within zone 1 (all bus routes within Christchurch city). This would increase to $3.20. The Metrocard cost would go from $2.10 to $2.30. The child’s cash fare for the same zone would increase from $1.40 to $1.60. The Metrocard increase would be $1.05 to $1.15.
The capped cost of the Metrocard on a weekly basis (ie unlimited travel each week within Christchurch city, effectively making weekend trips free to daily commuters) would increase from $21 to $23 for adults and $10.50 to $11.50 for children.
Zone 2 (Kaiapoi and Lincoln) proposed increases: From $4 cash fare for an adult to $440; $2 to $2.20 for a child. Metrocard $3 to $3.30 for an adult, $1.50 to $1.65 for a child.
Zone 3 (Diamond Harbour ferry, Rangiora, Woodend and Waikuku, Rolleston and Burnham) proposed increases: Adult cash fares would go from $5 to $5.60, child fares from $2.50 to $2.80. Metrocard $3.75 to $4.20 adult, $1.90 to $2.10 for a child.
In Timaru, cash fares for an adult are proposed to go from $1.50 to $1.70, or with Metrocard $1.15 to $1.27. The child’s cash fare would increase from $1 to $1.10 with Metrocard increasing from 75 cents to 82 cents.
Metrocards, which are used by most bus passengers, would continue to save the users at least 25 per cent of the cost of a cash fare.





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