Good news at this hard time, though more applicable to user who transit frequently.
Originally Posted by www.straitstimes.comBUS and train ares will come down by 4.6 per cent from April 1.
Commuters will pay 2 cents less for a direct trip to 14 cents for a trip with one transfer.
This more than offsets the fare increases of the past three years combined - 0.7 per cent in 2008, 1.1 per cent in 2007, and 1.7 per cent in 2006, said a joint statement issued by Ministry of Transport, Public Transport Council, SBS Transit and SMRT on Thursday morning.
It also does not include the increase of up to 5 per cent under the fare adjustment formula that the public transport operators have agreed to forego this year.
In light of the economic downturn, the fare revision has also been brought forward to April instead of October so that commuters can benefit earlier from the reduction, said the statement.
To benefit commuters, the PTC has decided that the public transport operators shall bear a larger share (two-thirds) of the cost of this year's 10-cent increase in transfer rebate.
This is a permanent loss of $22 million per year of revenues for the operators, said the statement.
'In working together with the public transport operators to reduce fares, the PTC took into consideration the need to continue to move closer towards distance-based through-fares and spread the benefits across as many commuters as possible,' it said.
'However, in view of the poor economic conditions, the PTC decided not to fully implement through-fares this year to reduce the burden of adjustment for both commuters and operators.' The full implementation of through-fares will now take place in 2010.
The fare reduction package will cost the public transport operators about $80 million over a 15-month period - from April to June 2010.
Mr Gerard Ee, Chairman of the PTC said: 'In the recent past, both operators have chosen not to apply for fare increases when economic conditions were poor. This had happened in 2003 and 2004.
'This year, not only are they not applying for a fare increase, they have decided to give a fare rebate to commuters.'
'The PTC is pleased that the operators are mindful of prevailing economic conditions. They are passing on the Budget savings and more. Due credit must be given to the operators for this significant gesture.' 'This $80 million fare reduction package will certainly go a long way to help commuters lower their transport expenditure during this difficult period.'
Fare cut and transfer rebate
THE lower fares, effective till June 2010, comprises both a fare rebate and an increase in transfer rebate.
All adult EZ-Link fares for buses and trains will be cut by 2 cents per trip, across all farebands.
Senior citizen concession EZ-Link fares, which are pegged to the lowest adult EZ-Link fares, will also be reduced by 2 cents per trip, while that for children and student concession EZ-Link fares will be cut by 1 cent per trip, across all farebands.
The prices of all monthly primary and secondary student bus and train concession passes will also cost $1 less, and that of student hybrid concession passes will be $2 less.
Tertiary students and NS-men will also pay $2 less for their monthly bus and train concession passes, and $4 less for hybrid concession passes.
There is no change to all cash fares for buses and all single-trip ticket fares for trains.
Also from April 1, the transfer rebate for all adult and senior citizen concession EZ-Link journeys will be further raised by 10 cents, from the current 40 cents to 50 cents.
This is on top of the earlier increase of 15 cents, from 25 cents to 40 cents, which took effect five months ago last October to reduce the fare penalty for transfers.
The existing 10-cent transfer rebate for child and student concession EZ-Link fares remains unchanged.
EZ-Link fares for adult and senior citizen concession journeys will therefore see a range of fare reduction, from a reduction of 2 cents for a direct journey with no transfer, to a reduction of 14 cents for a journey with 1 transfer. Journeys with multiple transfers will enjoy greater fare reductions, of up to 38 cents.