Sunday, January 8, 2012

More about the fare hike. You bet this will be approved

Bicky found some more information courtesy of the folks over at Transit Toronto.

Here's a snapshot:

According to the staff report, GO has not increased its fares since since March 2010, while more and more passengers continue to ride GO trains and buses. The increase in ridership let GO manage without increasing fares in 2011. However, its costs, such as the price of diesel fuel, continue to rise.

As part of the annual business plan process, Metrolinx management is recommending that GO Transit increase its one-ride fares, using a blended approach that supports fare by distance in the following amounts:
  • increasing fares that are currently between $4.20 and $5.50 by 30 cents;
  • increasing fares that are currently between $5.51 and $7 by 35 cents; and
  • increasing fares that are currently greater than $7.01 by 40 cents.
Staff expect that increasing the fares will let GO continue to “grow” its ridership in 2012 and continue to achieve an “on-time performance” rate of 95 per cent (meaning how often trains arrive on schedule).

Raising fares will provide GO with about $1.6 million each month, starting in March or $19.5 million annually.

GO will use the extra funds to support the first full year of train service to and from Kitchener and Guelph. The extra revenue will also support more 12-car trains to reduce crowding, more trains on the 01 Lakeshore West and 09 Lakeshore East lines, one more train along either the 21 Milton or 71 Stouffville line and as much as four percent more bus service along certain key routes.

Staff are also recommending that GO not change the loyalty discount program for PRESTO card users at 17.5 percent over the course of a monthly period for adult customers and at the equivalent of 35 percent over the course of a monthly period for students. They suggest reducing discounts for paper monthly-pass users to 15 percent for adult passengers and and 30 percent for students, encouraging more passengers to switch to the PRESTO fare-card system. GO would not change any other discount programs.

Yep, GO is going to pry those monthly passes from your hands because they make more from Presto. Presto rounds up amounts which may seem like pennies but in the grand scheme of things, it's half a million dollars more a year of your pennies.

More about the "rounding up issue" on Facebook.


Anonymous said...

Interesting... I don't see how they make more with Presto. Since I switched in September, it's costing me a little less every month compared to the monthly pass. And the few times I had issues with the card on the bus, they refunded me more money. So far I win!!

Al said...

Don't they usually increase fares across the board?
I've never seem them increase differently based on the fare price. I have always seen it increase by a quarter or whatever at all stations at the same time.

Shirker said...

For those who use 10-rides, time to stock up.

AngelSil said...

The closer stations are getting (proportionally) screwed. My fare only goes up 30 cents, but that's a much bigger percentage of the overall cost than for someone riding in from, say, Burlington.

One can only hope 'reducing crowding' means there will actually be seats for the increased cost.

Squiggles said...

I have a coworker who did a trial for PRESTO back in fall. It did cost her a few cents more for that month. I figured it was the rounding up of the odd cents created by the discount.

But, upon reading this, it did sound like it was only the one ways and the like that would see an increase, and the monthly pass holders would skate by without a significant increase.

If this does happen, I may need to look into PRESTO. I do take the bus on occasion to the station (bad weather when I can't walk to and from) so it would mean not scrounging up 65 cents for those days.

Dib said...

I can't see the Presto card being so much easier than a paper pass. All I have to do with my paper pass is sign it and put it in my purse. No 'tap on, tap off' 4 times a day; no Presto reloading more money than it should; no muss, no fuss. As an aside, Presto doesn't have a reader at my subway station, so I would still have to use tokens one way.

Squiggles, you can buy co-fares for DRT for $6.25, then you don't have to worry about digging up change.

Squiggles said...

@ Dib:

Yup, just looked into it. I have been trying to figure out if the monthly cofare is cheaper for me that the 10 ride vs. the single fare for the odd days I take it. Whatever I decide, it will happen for February, unless this weather changes.

lswgirl13 said...

I still like Presto but regarding the fare increase, the first I heard ANYTHING about this was on the news this morning and they are voting on this today??? Of course they are, keeps the ridership revolt to a minimum. Like Al, I find it interesting that the fares increase depending on your station. I'm one of the 40 cents people, so another $4.00 a week. Glad I can pitch it for the extended line to Guelph and Kitchener **rolls eyes**.

lswgirl13 said...

Had I scrolled down a little further, I would have seen that you topic'ed about this late on Friday C.J.
I see that a couple of people mentioned paying for parking at the station. NEVER!!!!

Dib said...

The ten co-fare rides work out to 62.5 cents a ride and they don't have an expiry date so you can use them whenever you need.

I find they are really helpful, as I sometimes use DRT since GO changed the bus times. Have you ever noticed that if something is working well, they just have to rejig it so your schedule is shot to hell?

Squiggles said...

@ Dib: you betcha. I believe that all transit systems have the similar philosophy of making life miserable for those they are trying to serve.

Will probably get the 10 ride to use this month and see how it works out. Thanks!

TomW said...

GO's costs have gone up. Either we pay higher provnicial taxes, get more provnicial debt, cut GO's services, cut some other provnicial spending (like schools), or have higher fares.

Which would you choose?

Anonymous said...

So they're going to make the paper passes, which have worked perfectly well, more miserable to get people to adopt the miserable Presto system.

Unsurprising. Maddening, but unsurprising.

Anonymous said...

Start stocking up on 10-ride tickets as much as you can. I have tickets as far back as 2004 and Im still using them today.