Wellington Public Transport Survey

August 7th, 2012 at 10:00 am by David Farrar

is doing a survey of fares in Wellington, which is a good thing. The survey is here.

Less good is that you do the survey, and then it critiques your answers, asks you if you want to reconsider, before you submit them!

My answers were:

  1. Fare structure should be point to point as well as zonal. Point to point charges you on actual distance.
  2. We should keep the 14 zones, rather than have larger more expensive zones.
  3. Public transport fares should cost the same per km no matter how far you travel
  4. There should be higher fares at peak times, double off peak fares

They commented:

A fare system based on your responses would not be simple & easy to understand, and may encourage more people to use public transport.

The fare system would reflect the costs of providing different public transport services, and may encourage economic efficiency e.g. by reducing external costs such as congestion.

The fare system would not be easy to implement and administer, but would support efficient network design, operations and asset utilisation.

The fare system may improve access to public transport for people who do not have access to a motor vehicle, or cannot walk or cycle for most of their trips.

I’m pretty happy with those trade offs.

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6 Responses to “Wellington Public Transport Survey”

  1. anonymouse (652 comments) says:

    The Council’s survey is (IMHO) another cart before the horse exercise,

    It talks about making fares based on distance, but until they deliver integrated ticketing across buses and trains, you will always have a transfer penalty which destroys your distance fare model…. ( they have been promising integrated tickets for the last 20 years……

    Also the first point in their critique is not consistent,

    A fare system based on your responses would not be simple & easy to understand,
    and may encourage more people to use public transport.

    So will a fare system that is simple and easy to understand not encourage more people to use public transport ??!????

    I ask you, what sort of fare system would this robot need to not encourage people to use public transport???

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  2. peterwn (2,941 comments) says:

    Much of the concern could be overcome by having a simplistic cash system – pay for each ride, no off peak discounts, possibly no change given etc and save the complexities for a Snapper type system, or ‘day’ tickets from a vending machine. Super gold card should be Snapper capable. London and Hong Kong does this – it is worth while having Oyster or Octopus for even short stays.

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  3. RRM (8,997 comments) says:

    I think the price per kilometre should diminish with distance.

    (1) The whole point of having trains is to make it attractive for people to live out in the Hutt or up the Coast and commute in to Wellington. If it costs $30 to catch the train into work, who’s going to want to do it?

    (2) Stopping the train / bus to pick you up, and then accelerating back up to speed again, is where the vehicle uses most of its fuel. Once you’re up and running, humming along the tracks at a steady speed is pretty cheap.

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  4. Tony (9 comments) says:

    RRM: Firstly the price per kilometer DOES diminish with distance now.

    Secondly, it probable DOES cost $30 to catch a train from Kapati to work and back. Rail users pay about 1/3 of the true cost of their trips (Bus users pay about 55%).

    Finally, why should business ratepayers (who pay about 1/3 of the subsidy), pay extra so that you can live on the Coast ? Surely it is your choice to live far away from work . . . why should your employer fund that ?

    The real important change is to have buses and trains users pay the same. This will probably mean either bus users getting 40% discount monthly tickets or rail users losing their monthly passes . . . it is not fair at the moment.

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  5. RRM (8,997 comments) says:

    Tony:

    1/ Yes I’m aware of that.

    2/ Yes I’m aware of that. Again, getting people on trains benefits others besides just those people, so it’s fair that the cost is shared.. Every time a 6-car train goes by at peak hour there’s what, 500 or 1000 commuters? Imagine how much worse SH1 would look if they were all driving cars.

    3/ Imagine what property prices in Wellington would be, if it was prohibitively expensive to live in the outer suburbs and everyone was that much more desperate to live in Wellington City? You’d be paying it all in wages instead of in rates…

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  6. thedavincimode (6,133 comments) says:

    Were homosexuals and same sex marriage proponents included in this survey?

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