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Cash fare increases will hurt poorest - Ellis

28 October, 2014 - by Dessie Ellis TD

Sinn Féin Transport spokesperson Dessie Ellis TD has criticised the increase in public transport fares, particularly those made to cash fares which are significantly higher than in the case of prepaid tickets and Leap card fares.

He made his comment following the release of new public transport fare levels to be implemented in the New Year.

Deputy Ellis said:

"I welcome that in some cases Leap card fares have decreased and I believe policy should be encouraging people to move toward prepaid cards like the Leap card which has been a great success, but the cash fare increases will hit many poorer bus and rail users hard.

“An adult return far on a commuter train will increase by as much as 16%. Some cash fares for Dublin Bus are going up by as much as 25c. This will mean for many their daily bus commute will be around 6 euro if paid in cash. While there are some savings for Leap card users there is also increases in shorter distance fares.

“It is right that we encouraged people to switch to the Leap card scheme but for some prepaying for transport is not a good option for them due to living on a very tight budget which leaves them struggling from week to week. These people will suffer under these increases.

“The way to improve our bus services is not to make them less affordable in any circumstance. Leap must be made attractive in its own right rather than making cash fares bad value. We also need to restructure networks in Dublin City centre to provide affordable services from short distance users without overcrowding existing services.

“Dublin Bus has made huge strides in the last few years and come out of the worst of the recession despite the neglect of the government. We cannot impede its progress by allowing further fare hikes and we had been told by the Minister for Transport that this would not happen."

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