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How Should Translink Charge Riders On Metro Vancouver Transit?


Photo: oh_my_gerbils / 604 Now Flickr Pool

Translink recently involved the residents of Metro Vancouver in their upcoming changes to fare calculation on transit.

Indeed, the way that fares are calculated on transit routes has been a point of contention in the lower mainland. Not only have they continued to rise over the years, but some people feel that the way they are calculated is unfair.

One popular idea is what the transit provider calls “rapid transit fares.” In short, these fares are based on the number of kilometres traveled, instead of the number of zones travelled through.

In phase one riders identified some major issues with fare payment and service that include how:

  • Short trips across a zone boundary result in a two-zone fare
  • Steep price jumps occur when crossing a zone boundary
  • Large zones don’t accurately reflect distances travelled
  •  Zone boundaries are arbitrary

Translink and Fare Calculation

On July 1st, 2017, Translink increased their fares by 5 to 10 cents depending on route. While that doesn’t sound like much, they have been steadily increasing these fares over the years. What’s more, the average rider takes more than one journey a day, and that can slowly add up. They specified that extra revenue collected from the fare increases would be used to improve services. These services included buses, SkyTrain service, HandyDART and the SeaBus.

Translink closes their survey on Friday, December 8th. For more information, go here.

Translink recently started running a couple of double decker-buses on select routes in Metro Vancouver for a pilot project. In addition, they plan to add 56 more cars to the skytrain in 2018 to ease congestion.

How do you think that the fares should be calculated? Do you think it should be based on distance traveled? Or, should it be based on the length of time the travel takes? Alternatively, do you think there is a more viable way that the fares should be calculated?

Sound off in the comments below!

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