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Transport Ministry plans reduced ticket fares for short journeys in Athens

Greece’s Transportation Minister Christos Spirtzis announced government plans to allow reduced ticket in Athens public transport means for short journeys.

According to economic news website, Spirtzis said in an interview it was not fair that someone who travels across Attica pays the same fair as somebody who uses public transport means only for short journeys of just a few stops.

The short duration tickets may cost even less than one euro.

At the same time, there would be fare increases according to geographical zone criteria.

The fare for a single ticket with a 90-minute duration is currently €1.40.

At the same time, Athens Public transport Organization OASA reportedly plans to introduce a two-way ticket for €2.80.

These plans are not expected to go into effect before spring 2018.

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  1. Martin Baldwin-Edwards

    Setting fares according to distance travelled is a neoliberal approach, determined to reflect the actual cost of providing a service in a very literal way and to prevent implicit or intended subsidies. It is far from clear, though, that those travelling short distances cost significantly less than those going further, because the real cost of public transport is providing the infrastructure and running it — i.e. paying salaries, fuel and maintenance costs.

    In any case, increasing the ticket price for those living outside the city is going to have repercussions. It will start reproducing the problems of London, where people need to travel from outside the centre to get to work or for social life and the costs are terrible. One likely result is that fewer people will travel into Athens to shop or engage socially. Or, if they maintain their current habits they will lose a fair bit of money from their household income.

    The only people who will benefit are people who travel very short distances on a regular basis, but do not buy a season ticket. Yet another bad and anti-socialist idea under the Syriza government…

  2. Who cares anyway, the cost is paid by the taxpayer one way or the other. Public transport may be cheap in Greece, but it’s deficits are covered by taxpayer money anyway so basically every tax payer in Greece is subsidizing public transport even if they never use it!

    One way or another everyone pays!

    • says the troll that has admitted to dodge in public transport means…
      every tax payer pays also for schools even they they have no children.

  3. Martin Baldwin-Edwards

    @Syrizee. Public goods are paid for by everyone, via taxes, and are for everyone. Things are that considered too important to be left to “market forces” and the manipulations of rich businessmen belong in this category: water, electricity, roads, schools, hospitals, basic foods and transport are all candidates for public goods, with perhaps some restrictions.

    One solution used in the EU has been to subsidise them so that users do not pay the full cost of using them, but do not have unlimited free use of them. This I consider totally reasonable, and fair to people on low incomes. It is not the belief of Europe’s extremist neoliberal governments in recent decades — who consider it much better to privatise everything so that they and their rich friends can rip us all off.

  4. well then you might as well make public transportation free then since the taxpayer will pay for it one way or another!

    at least in the UK you get a free pass when you are 65 and over!

    In Gr i think you only get a free pass if you are serving in the military.

  5. Martin Baldwin-Edwards

    @Syrizee. The UK free pass is for anyone over 60. There are several reasons why travel cannot be free. One is legal: I think it is not permitted under EU rules. Another is that it is considered wasteful, in that it could encourage overuse of the system and make it more costly. A low fare discourages people from using buses or the metro when they have no need of it.

    But you are right that Greece does not help its elderly, handicapped, unemployed and children. Tsipras has made no effort to modernise the country to reflect standard practices across the EU.

  6. So we wait until spring before using the metro again for short journeys. The new ticket prices are a real boon to the taxi sector!