To mitigate the impact of the upcoming fare hike, almost half a million commuters will be able to benefit from enhanced concession schemes, the Public Transport Council (PTC) said today (Jan 16).
The commuters who stand to benefit are polytechnic students, senior citizens, children and full-time National Servicemen (NSFs). In particular, about 80,000 polytechnic students can finally enjoy the same monthly concession pass (MCP) prices as secondary, junior college and Institute of Technical Education (ITE) students.
From April 6, MCPs for polytechnic students will be slashed by about 44 to 47 per cent to S$27.50 for buses and S$25 for trains. For hybrid monthly concession passes, new concessions will cost S$51 instead of the current S$97.
Fare concessions for polytechnic students have been in the waiting for years. Polytechnic students have written letters to the press questioning their adult fares. Several Members of Parliament had also argued for such concessions last year.
Besides polytechnic students, about 10,000 NSFs will also see prices for their MCPs lowered by 10 to 23 per cent to the same price as university students. All other student hybrid monthly concession passes will also see price reductions of between 3 to 12 per cent, a move that will benefit some 150,000 riders.
Two new monthly unlimited travel passes will also come into effect on April 6.
The Adult Monthly Travel pass will cost S$120 and help frequent public transport users cap their travel spending. The PTC estimated that this will benefit 40,000 to 60,000 adult Singaporean and Permanent Resident commuters.
The second pass, called the Senior Citizen Concession Card, is priced at S$60 and will be used by some more than 30,000 senior citizens, who are frequent users of public transport.
The daily limit on train rides for all train and hybrid monthly passes will also be removed to bring it in line with current unlimited rides allowed in bus monthly passes.
The child concession card, which currently allows concessionary travel on basic fare bus and train services, will allow holders to travel for free from April 6 onwards. This will benefit some 120,000 to 150,000 children below seven, before they enter primary school.
Speaking to reporters, PTC Chairman Gerard Ee said the concessions seek to ensure fares remain affordable. “All these enhancements are expected to benefit approximately half a million of the current 1.2 million existing concession beneficiaries, and these are on top of the two new concession schemes for lower-wage workers and persons with disabilities that would be separately implemented by the Government,” he said.