Are our public transport fares one of the most expensive in the world?
I refer to the article “Khaw Boon Wan says cheap fares are popular but not sustainable. Gets whacked by netizens” (theonlinecitizen, Mar 7).
It states that “”We must be careful that (fares) are not priced too cheaply, as maintaining a high-quality transport system requires resources. Cheap fares are popular, but they are not sustainable,” Mr Khaw said.
He then noted that the current formula is “inadequate” and the Public Transport Council (PTC) is reviewing it to take into account “total costs”, saying, “I am confident that they can work out a fair and sustainable arrangement. Please support the PTC when they make their recommendations.””
In my view, the bottom line on the affordability of transport fares is arguably, very simple – how much do Singaporean residents generally pay for public transport, relative to other countries?
Since I am in Spain now – let’s do a comparison.
The monthly cost for an annual pass in Madrid city central zone A is S$17, S$27 and S$74 (1 Euro = S$1.63), for seniors, youth and adults respectively, compared to S$60, S$51 and S$120 respectively, in Singapore.
(Note: “An Annual Pass can be applied for at any time during the year, its price proportional to the number of months remaining that year”)
After adjusting for purchasing power parity – the difference may even be greater.
Do we have one of the most expensive public transport fares in the world?
Leong Sze Hian