CityRail: Still charging peak hour prices for a Saturday timetable

Yep it’s that time of year again. Those weekdays between Christmas and New Year where CityRail run a Saturday timetable (with a few extra morning and afternoon services) but still slug you with a full peak hour fare.

I wrote a post about this last year¬†and at the time Barry O’Farrell seemed to think would be logical to charge an off-peak fare for an off-peak service.

Mr O’Farrell, now that you’re Premier, is this still the case or are the states finances so bad we need to squeeze every last drop from everywhere we can?

A reader pointed out last year in the comments that this issue is covered in the CityRail FAQ’s

Why do I have to pay full peak fare during holiday periods?

Rail services are already heavily subsidised by the community. The price of a full fare train ticket represents around one quarter of the total cost of providing the service. It would be unfair to further subsidise rail services by providing off-peak fares for everyone travelling throughout this period. Doing so would also disadvantage customers who purchase MyTrain and MyMulti weekly, monthly, quarterly or yearly tickets.

Due to the high costs involved in running these services (even when running an amended timetable), in addition to staffing and maintenance costs during holiday periods, it is not viable for an off-peak fare to be charged over these days.

Well that statement is a bit of a cop out isn’t it? You don’t pay enough anyway so we’ll charge you based on that rather than charging for the service we deliver to you. High cost of running services? It’s not a public holiday so CityRail aren’t paying their staff penalty rates, why does it cost more now than any other weekday of the year? If it’s not viable to charge customers for what they are getting….

This time of year is a perfect opportunity to entice people back to public transport and away from their cars, offer incentives to use trains to get to work during this weak rather than provide an incentive for someone to drive to work instead.

Public transport in NSW is now supposed to be ‘all about the customer’, yes all about shafting the customer whenever you can.


8 thoughts on “CityRail: Still charging peak hour prices for a Saturday timetable

  1. Yawn. Been hearing this for 18years. Ride a bike to work if you disagree. You still have better services than other lines. And this sorta stuff leads to abuse of front line staff who don’t deserve it.

    • It’s not about me and my line and the services it has, it’s about the logical step of applying the correct pricing to the service that is being delivered. This applies to everyone traveling by train from anywhere on the network.

      There are more than just regular commuters traveling on these days and the more incentive for them to travel on public transport the better. Then there are less cars on the road and less people whinging about holiday traffic.

      You wouldn’t be happy paying Express Post fees if Australia Post just decided to do standard post instead but still charge you the premium.

      I’m not advocating abuse of front line staff, anyone that abuses them for the stupid decisions management makes is a dick

  2. Pingback: Should Off-Peak Trains Charge Full Fare Prices? | Lifehacker Australia

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