Beijing residents will soon bid farewell to ultra-low subway and bus fares.
The municipal government announced its final plan for price hikes on Thursday, with the increases to take effect on Dec 28, when four new subway lines open.
Subway fares will increase from 2 yuan (33 cents) to 3 yuan for the first 6 km. Thereafter, fares will be charged according to distance traveled, with no ceiling, the Beijing Municipal Commission of Development and Reform, the city's top planning authority, announced on Thursday.
For bus trips up to 10 km, fares will rise to 2 yuan from 1 yuan on most routes. After the first 10 km, fares will rise by 1 yuan for every 5 km traveled.
New tickets, along with other features, such as signs showing distances between metro stations, will appear gradually before Dec 28, the Beijing Commission of Transport said.
Detailed regulations will help to control inappropriate behavior, such as begging and swiping cards in the same station to avoid higher fares, the commission said.
Staff members at subway stations will be given additional training to serve passengers, the commission said.
Preferential policies aimed at encouraging passengers to avoid traveling in the rush hours will be issued by the end of 2015, it said.
Based on suggestions collected at a hearing in October, the municipal planning authority will release policies on monthly tickets and other preferential tickets to promote the use of combinations of public transportation, said Li Sufang of the authority.
Peter Anders, a 38-year-old German working in the capital, who spends an hour a day on the subway, said such plans may not change much.
"The fare hikes may have little influence on commuters, since they need to go to work no matter what the price is," Anders said. "Passengers traveling in rush hours may not be reduced greatly."
Although his monthly commuting expenses will exceed 300 yuan, he will not take buses because of the possibility of being late for work due to traffic jams, he said.
Kong Linghai, who attended the October hearing, said he will bear the increased cost and continue taking the subway.
"But I will take buses instead when I go out to the supermarket or for other activities, if they're not urgent, to save money," said the 63-year-old resident of Haidian district.
The number of passenger rides on Beijing subways hit 3.2 billion in 2013, an increase of 350 percent from 2007. Government subsidies also increased from 13.5 billion yuan in 2010 to 20 billion yuan in 2013.
By the end of 2013, the Beijing subway network reached 465 km, making it one of the world's most extensive systems, the transport commission said.
Another 13 subway lines are under construction, which will add 208 km to the total.
General chat. Got a question that's baffling you?
2 posts • Page 1 of 1