Translink to offer cheaper fares and increased services

CHERYL YONG

Cheaper public transport fares and more night bus services in Queensland Photo: Google image

Cheaper public transport fares and more night bus services in Queensland. Photo: Google Images

A state-wide reduction to public transport fares will begin on November 3 making it more affordable for Queenslanders to catch the train, bus, tram or ferry.

An extra 15 NightLink bus services have been trialled in Brisbane from October to improve late night services.

A Brisbane City Council report shows that Queenslanders are choosing to avoid public transport due to high fares, unreliable timing and a lack of night services.

According to ABC News, Brisbane City Council Opposition Leader Milton Dick said council missed the bus patronage target by 3 million passengers.

“The quarterly report that comes through to council told us that for 2013-2014…we are 3 million passengers less than where we should be,” he said.

“It has been a big issue for a number of commuters over the last 12 months due to the council cutting $20 million in public transport services.”

Meanwhile, Mr Dick said he asked the State Government and Council to listen and act upon customer preferences.

“We are getting a number of complaints about buses not turning up on time and since we have cut buses late at night it is a worry for students, shift workers and young women,” he said.

“It is an issue of cost too. It is time that we take a good look at transport services rather than this slash and burn approach.”

Almost 22,000 people from across Queensland voted and 74% said they wanted cheaper fares.

Transport and Mains Roads Minister Scott Emerson said the $30 million carbon tax savings should be reinvested following Queenslanders call for cheaper fares.

“Queenslanders have said fares are too expensive having increased by 52 per cent in the last three years under Labor,” he said.

“We agreed that is why we have worked hard to lower fares and passengers will now pay less for a weekly go card than they were under the previous Labor Government.”

Premier Campbell Newman said cheaper fares will help reduce cost of living for families.

“Under our strong plan, we promised to deliver cost of living relief for families and this announcement means Queenslanders will pay five per cent less to use public transport,” he said.

“Fares will also be frozen in 2015, so Queenslanders across the state will save up to 7.5% next year,

“What this means is that a mum or dad travelling to work in the Brisbane CBD from the Gold Coast will save more than $297 a year or nearly $2000 compared to what they would have paid under Labor.”

Mr Emerson said the new arrangement will include an extra 15 NightLink bus services.

“Under our policies we have added 3000 extra bus and train services to the network, trains are running on time and up to 80,000 passengers are benefiting from our free ‘travel after nine weekly journeys’ initiative,” he said.

“On top of those benefits, passengers will now pay less for public transport across the State for the first time in Queensland’s history.

“The savings will be across the State so all Queensland public transport users will benefit from improvements in public transport affordability whether they live in South East Queensland or regional Queensland.”

To view the NightLink timetables, visit www.translink.com.au.

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