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Fare freeze in Gippsland thaws increasing cost for passengers taking train or bus
Gippsland line passengers will pay more to take the train or bus from today, with public transport fees set to rise.
The Andrews Labor Government will increase the cost of a ticket on regional public transport by 1.1 per cent on average, adding 80 cents to Gippsland daily train fare from 1 January 2022. Metropolitan fares will increase an average of 2.3 per cent, pushing up the price of myki travel in Melbourne by 20 cents a day.
After freezing fares last year, the Department of Transport this week announced an increase to public transport fares from 1 January 2022
Increase on fare
On Gippsland's VLine, the cost of a 7-day pass will jump $2.00, adding an extra $104 to yearly travel. The increase reverses a fare freeze applied during the pandemic and comes at the wrong time.
Not only are many Victorians still struggling to make ends meet and pay the bills, but patronage across the network remains at record lows. It's expected to continue while the Andrews Labor Government fails to lead the CBD's recovery by getting public sector workers back to the office.
Public transpo patrons huge decrease
Data from the Department of Transport shows passenger trips have plummeted through lockdowns, with just 600,000 trips per day across the state - down from 1.66 million per day before the pandemic began.
For Traralgon V/Line services, patronage has dropped from 4,959 trips a day in 2018-19 to 2,466 in 2020-21. Fares were frozen during the COVID pandemic after Labor's poorly managed response left hundreds of thousands of people out of work and unable to pay the bills or forced to close their business.
Encouraging locals to use public transportation
Shadow Minister for Public Transport Steph Ryan said, "We should be encouraging locals to find more reasons to choose public transport to travel, not less. Higher fares put more pressure on people still struggling to make ends meet, on sick regional Victorians travelling to Melbourne for medical appointments and there is less incentive for office workers to get back to the CBD."
"Labor can't manage major projects which has left Daniel Andrews swimming in debt and desperate to plug billions of dollars in cost blowouts, no matter the cost to Victorians." Ms Ryan said.
Pictures from Vline Facebook page.
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