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Pensioner bus times peak too early

Oct 24th, 2008 | By | Category: Latest News, News

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WELLINGTON pensioners are upset over the discrepancy between the hours they can use the pensioner 10-trip bus tickets and the new SuperGold card concessions.

The pensioner 10-trips, due to be phased out later with coming improvements to the Snapper system, can be used until 4pm and again after 6pm – but the SuperGold card is more limited.

Free travel using the card is available until 3pm and after 6.30pm, with both the SuperGold card and pensioner 10-trips applicable at weekends and public holidays.

“This is the government being absolutely stupid,” says Hataitai frequent bus user Linda Paris (pictured). “They should both finish at four.”

But neither bus company GoWellington nor the Greater Wellington Regional Council have much control in the matter.

NZ Transport Agency media manager Andrew Knackstedt says it is the government that sets the off-peak hours.

He says the government provides funding to councils for SuperGold travellers only until 3pm.

“Councils can provide free travel after this, but it will be at their own expense,” he says.

Announced earlier this year by Winston Peters, the SuperGold card travel concessions provide free off-peak travel for pensioners and will cost $18 million a year for the next four years.

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