Auckland Transport Responds to Fare Increase (Post)
Last week I had risen a concern from a passenger that train ten-trip ticket holders would face a technical fare increase when they move to AT-HOP from 28th October.
From BR:AKL (in brief)
ARE TEN TRIP USERS ABOUT TO PAY MORE?
Yesterday I had posted on bus fares increasing in the Waikato, well feedback after that post came back to me pointing out there is a (as I am putting it) a technical price movement coming up for some rail commuters in Auckland.
Through feedback that comes my way from time to time, a regular rail passenger who uses ten-tip tickets raised a concern that their cost of commuting would rise when the current ten-trip paper tickets used on the trains would be phased out to AT-HOP store valued cards – as part of the roll out for Auckland’s integrated ticketing regime. The passenger concerned uses a 1-stage ten-trip ticket at the cost of $16.00 (so $1.60 per ride) but from October 28th would need to switch to an AT-HOP card and use stored value in order to use the trains. According to Auckland Transport, when using AT-HOP stored value instead of cash for your trip you get up to 10% discount of a standard cash fare. Okay so that means your trip using AT-HOP stored value would be around $1.71 per trip (instead of $1.60 per trip as with the current but phasing out ten-trips).
This is the AT site that states the discount (http://www.aucklandtransport.govt.nz/improving-transport/aifs/Pages/default.aspx):
The Auckland Integrated Fares System (AIFS) project, branded Auckland Transport HOP (AT HOP), is the creation of an integrated smartcard ticketing system that can be used on all modes of Auckland’s public transport system.
Auckland Transport has been working with Thales to develop the technology that will be required to implement the system. This includes the back-end system, retail and top-up devices and the tag-on/off devices for rail and ferry.
BENEFITS FOR AT HOP CARD HOLDERS
- Travel on Auckland’s buses, rails and ferries by means of a reuseable, prepay smartcard.
- Once fully implemented, there will be no need to buy different tickets for different operators
- Can avoid having to carry cash for travel
- Get up to 10% discount on cash fares
- Travel for free on city LINK
- By registering the AT HOP card customers avoid losing money on their card if they lose it. They can call the AT HOP contact centre, cancel the lost card and transfer their funds on to a replacement AT HOP card.
- Manage their AT HOP card and accounts online. They can watch their employees’ or their children’s travel activity
- Have multiple convenient locations to top-up including online. AT HOP cards can also be topped up at retailers, service centres, ticket and top-up machines.
- Can set up an auto-reload option to manage their travel budget. That means you can set your card to top up the balance when it gets down to a certain level. They can set it and forget it.
- Faster boarding times as customers simply tag on and off. Tagging off means paying the lowest fare
- Benefits for the city and the transport system: more efficient revenue-collection/minimising fraud
Okay we seem to have a slight issue here folks.
Well upon reading the NZ Herald this morning, this reply on page eight under the “News Digest” sub section was spotted:
Note: It is on the right hand side of the pdf and you might need to zoom in to see the text.
And so after BR:AKL posted the fact of a possible fare increase, AT have responded and moved the discounts on the AT-HOP store valued cards back to the original discount levels of a ten-trip train ticket “so that no-one will be worse off.”
So a victory for our ten-trip users out there with no technical fare increases for you. As for those who wanted to purchase Family Passes, Day Rovers and Discovery Passes in the weekend just gone, feedback I am hearing from train-riders is that your weekend was somewhat “spoiled” when you discovered you could no longer purchase those “day-passes” through no fault what so ever of the train staff (they were just following instructions per the brochure from AT below).
This is the brochure from Auckland Transport released a few weeks ago outlining the ticketing regime change:
I suppose we await the response from AT on Day Passes now…
Remember in this Integrated Ticketing Roll Out: