The government yesterday presented the final decision on the rise of the bus fares. In a press conference, the director of the Transport Bureau, (DSAT) Lam Hin San, announced that every trip on public buses would cost, from this Saturday, MOP6. The adjusted fares have no inclusion of a fare for non-residents, an idea previously thought likely.
At the press conference, Lam said, “In operational terms we feel that at this moment the proposal [of an added differentiation] is not appropriate,” TDM reported.
As for payments made with a Macau Pass, holders will continue to benefit from special prices with a reduction to half-fare for the normal passes (MOP3) in the normal routes and to MOP4 on the express routes.
Students, elderly citizens (over 65) and people with disabilities will all continue to benefit from specially reduced bus fares, in some cases not requiring to pay at all.
After this update of bus fares, the first in 10 years, the government expects to cut around MOP150 million per year from the current budget of around MOP1 billion that the government is said to spend annually to keep the buses running with low fares.
According to DSAT calculations, region’s public buses were accountable for a total of 210 million trips last year, a figure that the government has forecast to increase by about 4 percent this year.
Operators punished for traffic accidents
One of the proposals announced by the director of the Transport Bureau, Lam Hin San, during the press conference held to announce the bus fare rise, was that the government might enforce penalties for bus companies involved in traffic accidents. Lam explained that such penalties can be enforced in such a way that “companies that register a high number of road accidents will not have the same possibility to establish new routes contrary to other companies,” TDM reported.