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Commuters bemoan October’s higher fares

Jun 24th, 2010 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, Latest News, News

bus MAIN

By Anita Blake-Persen and Nikki Papatsoumas

WELLINGTON COMMUTERS are upset with the ever-increasing costs of public transport.

Pauline YousifGO Wellington will increase bus fares on October 1, when most cash passengers will pay an extra 50c per journey, and several multi-trip passes will be withdrawn.

NewsWire asked Wellingtonians how they felt about the increases.

The majority of the 12 surveyed at bus stops around the city centre said they disagreed with the changes but would still catch the bus owing to a lack of other options.

Hataitai student Pauline Yousif (right) says it is too much of an increase, but adds: “I will have to catch the bus because I have no other transport.”

Khandallah resident Nicola Bradshaw (left), a policy analyst, says she will keep using public transport even though she thinks the prices are “insane”.

Nicola NEWNicola says buses are her only option and she can’t afford parking and petrol.

Others now think using their car might be a better idea.

Island Bay student Rosie Lithgow says the bus service is appalling and it now makes more sense for her to drive to university each day.

“You can get two hours’ free parking at uni and that, plus petrol, [makes it] cheaper than catching the bus return each day.”

Cafe manager Blair Fiveash (right), of Island Bay, is also considering getting back into the car.

He is upset that GO Wellington is scrapping Gold passes and the price Blair Fiveashhe pays for buses monthly will increase from $100 to $180.

Blair is now working out whether it will be cheaper for him to drive to work each day and pay for parking.

As well as cost issues, people are also concerned about environmental effects.

“If we want to protect the environment and see less cars on the road, we have to make sure that bus prices are affordable and encourage people to get the bus,” says Kelburn student Helena Nunn.

Technical assistant Hettie Barnard (left), of Normandale, says that it’s tough on the consumer.

Hettie BarnardGreta McAulney“For someone who’s not working or on the benefit, 50c is a lot. It’s that or a piece of fruit,” she says.

 Not everyone will be affected by the price increases. Senior citizens’ offpeak travel with the SuperGold pass will still be free.

Retiree Greta Mcaulny (right), of Island Bay, uses a SuperGold pass and says she’s “not too worried about it”.

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