WHAT YOU CAN DO
E-MAILS TO THE EDITOR
INTERNATIONAL FPT BLOG
CfFPT CAMPAIGN VIDEOS
CfFPT CAMPAIGN PHOTOS
CfFPT CAMPAIGN BLOG
TO OUR WEB SITE EDITOR
This page is our online version of a newspaper "Letters to the Editor" page.
We invite site visitors to send us their thoughts and comments about our campaign (and about this web site) and we'll publish them.
Our very first e-mail is from the US Campaigners for Free Public Transit:
Welcome to the struggle!
We have been watching your development and are excited to
see your progress.
Interest worldwide is really growing. Right now, the two places of most
interest to us are Bangkok, Thailand, where the government has made 72 bus
lines and 300 3rd class train fares free. But the government is under
The other place is Bermuda where the Progressive Labour Party has
implemented free buses for school children and is trying to expand it to
all riders. Unfortunately, we do not have contacts in these locations, if
you do, please give them encouragement and try to get some reports back.
Welcome to the struggle!
A great opportunity to tell Minister what rail passengers need!
Lord Adonis the rail minister is travelling round the country by train in April http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/politics/article6054368.ece
This is a great opportunity to tell him what rail passengers need!
We're going to focus on getting him to cut train fares. We haven't yet planned exactly what we're going to do, but we might give him a 'hero's welcome' at York station next Saturday 18th and tell him to cut fares.
I'll be in touch again about this next week but wanted to let you all know
Public Transport Campaigner
Campaign for Better Transport
12-18 Hoxton Street, London N1 6NG
Telephone: 0207 613 7718
Fax: 0207 613 5280
WHY WE CALL FOR FREE PUBLIC TRANSPORT
Many people have asked us why we are campaigning for free public transport, rather than something like low cost, or cheaper and/or more efficient public transport. This is an important point. There is a critical difference.
If you have ever used public transport, and especially a bus, you will recognise the difference right away. You have to wait for everyone to pay as they get on the bus.
You can't easily jump on and off a bus if you decide go on an errand.
You can of course buy a weekly or monthly pass, but you may still have to wait in line to show it to the driver.
Indeed, such are the delays caused in boarding as a result of fare collection that in the US, the Chicago Transport Authority is going to spend $25 million on a computer system to try and tackle the problem.
For the economists there are also many other reasons.
Having a fare, any fare, requires a basic fixed cost of collecting the fare. That is why many of the successful examples of free public transport are small rural transit systems. They found the cost of collecting fares too high a fixed cost in percentage terms.
The 'fixed cost' being represented in the cost of cashiers, book-keepers and accountants, and for the printing of tickets and passes, and so on. Also the cost of selling tickets and passes and collecting fares. All the people involved in those things could be working on cleaning, vehicle maintenance, security or even driving the buses.
Large transit systems actually have more fixed, fare-related costs, but they often put them in another accounting bucket, namely security. Do you see all those stainless steel turnstyles on the London Underground for example and all the caging and fencing to prevent fare avoidance. They cost a bundle.
With free transit, more people will ride. It is a proven fact (it's even intuitive). It will also be more convenient and easier on the employees and more economical for the operation.