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Old September 3rd, 2014, 05:06 PM   #1
Road_UK
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MISC | Transport economics and policies, fares, tickets

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Originally Posted by K_ View Post
We need a separate "transport economics and policies" thread...
And here it is...

How do you pay for your fare?





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Old September 4th, 2014, 05:25 PM   #2
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Latvia

If the station has a ticket office, you must buy your ticket there. If it doesn't have one or it is closed, you must buy your ticket on-board the train. Additionally for electric trains you can buy a ticket by sending an sms.


(I can't find a picture of the other side with all the numbers and stuff)

In the capital city of Rīga since last October people with local council transit discounts could use their smartcards and pay lower fares or even ride for free. But this will sadly be canceled as of 17th of September because of financial disagreements between Rīga city and Passenger train company (the passenger amounts are much higher than expected and the city refused to pay for the extra 0,5 mio €). Hopefully the system will be back in a month or two.


There are no stationary smartcard readers on the trains. Instead the conductor takes your smartcard and uses such hand-held device.

There are various fares:
The base fare is around 3,70 €/100km
A monthly ticket is around 2,40 €/100km
For baggage and bicycles it's around 1,10 €/100km
There is an additional fare of 1,40 € for first class irrespective of distance.
Additional 0,70 € for expresses irrespective of distance.
Additional 0,25 € for using a diesel train in electrified area irrespective of distance.
During winter certain less-used trains have 25% lower base fare.
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Old September 6th, 2014, 11:43 AM   #3
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The tariff system in Switzerland has a few key features.
- Integration: The mode doesn't matter. A ticket from A to B will cover all obvious ways to get from A to B. A pass will cover all modes in an area. One of the most popular passes is the "General Abo", which covers all public transit in the whole country. You can buy a ticket between any two places on the national network, which includes buses.
- Minimum interaction with the system. After you've paid for your ticket or pass you just have it on you. You are not required to spontaneously show it, or perform any procedure with it before boarding a vehicle. This applies to buses as well, where you normally can board through any door, and don't have to show your ticket to the driver (who's job usually is to just drive...). Only when there is a ticket check do you have to show your ticket.
- Self control. You are yourself responsible for having the right ticket with you. If you don't you get fined, and the fines can be quite stiff, especially for repeat offenders.

This all is aimed at making public transit user friendly (and with quite some success I'd say).

One major issue at the moment is the confusion that exists because of the coexistance of both a national, distance based tariff, and several, often overlapping, regional zone based tariffs. This is going to be resolved by the introduction somewhere in the future of a new national, zone based tariff.
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Old September 6th, 2017, 04:25 AM   #4
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I think this topic, old though, is interesting. So... how it is in Poland?

First. How it was before 1989. Basically, all the trains belonged to the PKP, so if you had a ticket for a given route and given class (standard/fast train), you could use any train on this route in the chosen class. There was no common fare system between trains (PKP) and buses (PKS), the buses had their own tickets. Concerning the city public transport (buses, trams, trolleybuses), there was already self-service for some years, which means, the passenger had to buy the ticket in advance and validate it on the board, in a special device. But, at least for some time, the tickets in all the cities were exactly the same, so you could, for example, validate in Kraków a ticket bought in Wrocław and it was perfectly valid. But here, there was also no common fare system with trains or non-city buses, which is understandable, as in those times, the tickets were valid only for a single ride. Before the self-service, there were conductors on all the buses, as well as on trams.

Concerning the financing, everything was state-owned. The trains were owned and managed by a single state enterprise called PKP (Polish State Railways). The non-city buses - almost only by a state enterprise called PKS (State Motor Transport - Państwowa Komunikacja Samochodowa), which was also responsible for freight transport on trucks. There were a few local small companies or cooperatives, like Autonaprawa Zamość, but it was just a few of them in the whole country. From what I have once read somewhere, although I am not sure at all about it, is that the PKS had always been bringing profit, so the routes with the highest number of passengers could easily finance those which were bringing loses. Even though, from what I have heard, the PKS buses were generally very overcrowded and it was a standard that when you was waiting on a bus stop, even in a small village, you couldn't be sure if the bus will take you or not. So it's not weird that the company was bringing profits. The reason was, of course, that very few people possessed cars; the automotive boom when practically all the families bought cars, or even a few cars for a family, was here at the end of 1990s and after 2000.

The city buses were managed by separate enterprises for each city, usually named MPK or MZK (City Transport Enterprise), but they were also state-owned. And they usually operated in the whole urban agglomeration, for example the MPK Łódź operated also in the neighboring towns of Zgierz and Pabianice. An exception was the Upper Silesian metropolitan area - they had a single (state-owned) public transport enterprise for the whole metropolitan area, called WPK (Voivodeship Transport Enterprise).

After 1989, the system became changed and the state decided to no longer finance the city transportation, passing it to the specific municipalities. Meanwhile, cities didn't really have funds for that, largely due to the general financial crisis in the country and hyper-inflation, but also because they had just started to work as separate entities. So the city public transport had to be largely limited and there was almost no investment e.g. in the tram infrastructure, the results of which are visible until now.

But it had to result also in changes in the ticketing systems - basically, all the cities (and, even, neighboring towns) started to issue their own versions of tickets. Throughout the next years, many cities, especially the biggest ones, introduced time-based fare system, in which a ticket is valid for a defined time after its validating, and within this time, you can transfer between different trams, city buses and trolleybuses. However, as the city public transport belonged and belongs to the cities, while the railway and non-city buses still belonged to the state, there was no fare integration.

Concerning the non-city buses, there started to appear many local transportation companies, in a style similar to Eastern European marshrutkas, initially in form of a single driver who just bought a minibus and started to carry people on a chosen route. After some regulation of this market was introduced, they started to join into small transportation companies. The activity was, however, still based mostly on minibuses, the timetable often existed only in theory and the drivers were breaking all the speed limits on the roads in order to be faster then the competitors. Meanwhile, the PKS got divided into 147 separate companies, with a name consisting of the acronym PKS (now extended as Motor Transport Enterprise - Przedsiębiorstwo Komunikacji Samochodowej) and the name of the town or city with the headquarters. E.g. PKS Łódź, PKS Wrocław, PKS Szczecin. The process of privatizing them started. Some of those companies got bought out by their employees, some by international companies like Mobilis or Veoila (later bought out by Arriva), some by other, already private, PKS companies, some by local authorities and some by... real estate developers, who were interested in the grounds, on which there were bus terminals or workshops. Now, there are still 7 state-owned PKS companies: PKS Częstochowa, PKS Lubliniec, PKS Ostrowiec Świętokrzyski, PKS Gniezno, PKS Ostrów Wielkopolski, PKS Warszawa (Polonus) and PKS Wrocław (Polbus).

What happened with those PKS companies after their privatization? Well, nothing good. In the best situation were, and still are, those overtaken by local authorities. The authorities usually continued subsidizing the routes with not so many passengers, so even if those companies did not bring profits, their existence wasn't endangered. In the worst situation were those overtaken by real estate developers - they weren't interested in any kind of transportation activity and they they tended to suspend this kind of service as soon as possible. The other two types - companies bought out by the employees or by international companies - were usually bad managed, the trade unions had much power in them and therefore they couldn't withstand the competition from the side of - on one hand - the small minibus companies, on the other hand - the private cars, the popularity of which was increasing rapidly. Therefore, they were suspending more and more local connections, and maintain - if so - only long-distance connections, which are bringing profits. And this process still takes place. Recently, it was talked much about suspension of all the local connections by Arriva in some parts of Poland. I live in a small town, and while just 5 years ago we still had something like 10 PKS connections in a day to the nearby big city, any of them doesn't exist any more. The transport on this route is provided only by the railway (14 departures in a day) and by three small minibus companies, with about... 70-80 departures in a day.

In such a reality, it's practically impossible to introduce fare integration between those buses, the city public transport and the railway. Although there are trials.

And what has happened with the railway? The reform of the PKP began in 2001. The company got divided into separate companies, like: PKP PLK (responsible for the infrastructure), PKP Intercity (responsible for the highest class long-distance trains), PKP Przewozy Regionalne (responsible for the local and long-distance fast trains), PKP Cargo (responsible for the freight railway transport) and some other less important ones: PKP Energetyka (responsible for the power supply), PKP Telekomunikacja Kolejowa (responsible for the railway telecommunications infrastructure), PKP Informatyka (responsible for the computer infrastructure) and others. This division is still largely criticized by the society, which blames it for lack of fare integration between different kinds of trains (which existed in the past, in the times of "a single PKP"). Even though it's not the main reason.

As a result of those reforms, in 2008, the PKP Intercity overtook all the long-distance trains (so called fast trains, Eilzüge - in Polish "pociąg pospieszny") from the PKP Przewozy Regionalne. This was the moment when the fare integration between local trains and most important, most popular long-distance trains (apart from the expensive, commercial "Express" and "InterCity" ones, which previously belonged to PKP Intercity) - fast trains got broken.

The PKP Intercity had, a year or two before, introduced a new type of commercial trains: TLK (Tanie Linie Kolejowe - Cheap Railway Lines), which were, as the name says, cheap, that means, cheaper than "Express" and "InterCity", with the price comparable with the fast trains by PKP Przewozy Regionalne. After overtaking the state-subsidized fast trains from PKP Przewozy Regionalne, they changed the brand and were merged with the TLK class. From that time, the TLK trains were the most important type of long-distance trains in the country. And still partially are, even though a few years ago they began being replaced by IC (InterCity, but it's a different InterCity from the old one) to indicate new or largely upgraded rolling stock. But also from that time, there is no fare integration between local and long-distance trains.

Also in 2008, the PKP Przewozy Regionalne got overtaken from the state by the voivodeships, becoming their common property. Shortly later the PKP acronym disappeared from the name and from then on, the name of the company is Przewozy Regionalne. A few months ago, a new name started to be used: PolRegio, but the official name is still Przewozy Regionalne.

To make the Przewozy Regionalne story full, I must mention one more thing. Shortly after overtaking the fast trains (renamed to TLK) by PKP Intercity, many of the connections got suspended. The Przewozy Regionalne decided to... start commercial connections in their place, named InterRegio. They were operating from 2009 to 2015, when the company decided they bring loses. And... there was fare integration between the local trains (formerly "osobowy" - "passenger train", shortly after 2008 renamed to Regio) and the InterRegio trains. A thing worth noticing is that while the InterRegio were long-distance trains (and, in practice, kind of equivalent to the former fast trains), most of them were operated using far from comfortable EN57 train units, designed in 1959-1961 for local trains. This is because when the PKP Intercity overtook the fast trains, it took also almost all the carriages with compartments. They also took most locomotives.

But, coming back to the topic, the last issue, showing what is probably the future of local railway transport in Poland (and which gives some hopes concerning fare integration on local scale, but definitely not on countrywide scale). In 2004, appeared the first local train operator in Poland: Koleje Mazowieckie. Created as a joint venture of (then still state-owned) PKP Przewozy Regionalne and the Mazovian voivodeship. In 2007, the voivodeship bought out the remaining 49% of the company, together with the rolling stock, from the state. The next local train operator in Poland was Arriva, which won, instead of Przewozy Regionalne, a tender for operating the local diesel lines in the Kuyavia-Pomerania voivodeship. Next operators where just created by voivodeship with an aim of gradual replacement of Przewozy Regionalne. Because Przewozy Regionalne is difficult to manage as a mutual property of many subjects, has problems with buying rolling stock, as it has many debts, and its future is not certain, most voivodeships either order the new rolling stock on their own and rent it to Przewozy Regionalne, or just started their own train carriers. And, so, in 2008 the Lower Silesia voivodeship created Koleje Dolnośląskie, in 2011 Greater Poland created Koleje Wielkopolskie and Higher Silesia - Koleje Śląskie, in 2014 Łódź voivodeship created Łódzka Kolej Aglomeracyjna and Lesser Poland - Koleje Małopolskie.

Most notable is the example of Koleje Śląskie. Most such companies were (and are) gradually replacing Przewozy Regionalne on more and more routes. Such a plan was also for Koleje Śląskie. In 2011, the company started to operate on one route: Częstochowa - Gliwice, on weekends extended to Wisła. The next year, the voivodeship made a tender and, if I am not mistaken, only Przewozy Regionalne took place in it (the only alternative could be Arriva, as there is no other passenger train operator in Poland). But its offer was very far for satisfying for the voivodeship. Since there was no more time for tenders, the only possible (and legal) options were to order the connections without tender in one of the companies that belong to the voivodeship: Przewozy Regionalne and Koleje Śląskie. As the offer of Przewozy Regionalne, as we already said, definitely not satisfying (and without a tender, so without any competition, it could only get worse), someone responsible decided it would be much better to just move all the connections in the voivodeships to Koleje Śląskie. And even though the assumptions and the plans were promising, there were chances that the carrier will manage to complete all the needed rolling stock in just a few months, it turned out to be too difficult. The company did not manage. Finally, they managed to borrow some locomotives and carriages from the Czech Railways (which, interestingly, always have excessive amount of them, all the time being able to rescue the Polish railway carriers with their rolling stock problems) in an urgent mode. As a consequence, some of the trains were operated with weird train compositions like a locomotive and a single carriage instead of a multiple unit (even though the timetable was planned for multiple units, so the locomotives caused delays on the end stations), some of them even had to be bustituted and the first days of Koleje Śląskie on all the railway lines in the voivodeship were nothing but just a lot of chaos.

But, what I tend to, the local train carriers are - at least partially - integrated with Przewozy Regionalne in terms of fares. However, it is valid only in case of normal tickets, without any special offers. And while there is fare integration between the local carriers and Przewozy Regionalne, there is no such integration between themselves. Łódzka Kolej Aglomeracyjna does not recognize the tickets of Koleje Mazowieckie or Koleje Dolnośląskie and vice versa.

Talking about the local carriers and Przewozy Regionalne, a place where the integration is quite good, are the special offers for network tickets. Przewozy Regionalne have RegioKarnet, which is valid also on the trains of some of the local carriers. Concerning them, there is even some integration with the PKP Intercity - the weekend network ticket Bilet Weekendowy. But those are exceptions from the typical situation in Poland, in which there is practically no integration.

Another thing is integration between the railway and the city public transport. It is regulated and agreed in each city separately. In some cities, there is such an integration, but it covers either only long-term passes (e.g. monthly), or the tickets valid for longer than 24 hours. Łódź had for years no such integration, luckily in the last years, it began to change. First, a common monthly ticket for the trains and the city public transport was introduced (more expensive than just a city ticket, but cheaper than two tickets bought separately). This year, finally, an agreement was reached which allowed integrating the short-term tickets with the railway operators: Łódzka Kolej Aglomeracyjna and Przewozy Regionalne. However, the solution is far from ultimate. It's definitely not passenger friendly. There are, for example, two types of tickets for almost the same price, valid in almost the same places, but nuances are different. Like one type is valid on trains in Zgierz and Pabianice (the neighboring towns), but not on buses and trams, the other one is valid on trams there, but not on trains. One is valid in Łódź also on Przewozy Regionalne trains, the other one not.

I made even a short table summing up the differences between them:



So easy for the passengers!

Summing up, Poland is still very far from a full tariff integration between different mode of transport, and even between different vehicles within a single mode of transport. But the things are slowly changing to better.

I wrote so much, maybe some ticket photos?

Typical city public transport tickets in Poland nowadays - those are from Łódź:



A noticeable thing is that they are on normal thin paper like the one for home printers, not on cardboard paper, as usually the city tickets in other countries.

Older layouts of tickets here: http://biletomania.eu/katalog-bileto...-lodzkie/lodz/

A Przewozy Regionalne railway ticket for a route including Regio and InterRegio (no longer existing, except for the Warsaw-Łódź route) trains:



It's worth noticing that Polish railways still massively use dot-matrix printers for printing the tickets. Probably the only carrier, in whose ticket offices you can find modern thermal printers, is Łódzka Kolej Aglomeracyjna.

By the way, the ticket offices also belong to different carriers. And they sell the tickets of the other carriers, but not each carrier sell the tickets of each other carrier in its ticket offices. The widest choice of tickets, including all the local carriers and PKP Intercity, is in the counters of Przewozy Regionalne. PKP Intercity sells tickets only for some local carriers. The local carriers always sell the tickets of Przewozy Regionalne in their ticket offices, but it looks variously if we talk about selling the tickets of the other local carriers, as well as PKP Intercity. The biggest problem is in the Silesia voivodeship, where most ticket desks were overtaken from Przewozy Regionalne by Koleje Śląskie, but unlike Przewozy Regionalne, Koleje Śląskie doesn't sell the tickets of PKP Intercity. So the availability of the tickets of this carrier became limited to a small number of their own ticket offices, located only in some of the towns, and the Internet.

Tickets of the other carriers follow the same layout:



But the tickets issued on the train may look different:



Or even more different if the technology fails:



Concerning the long-term tickets, more and more frequently, especially in the city transport, they get electronic form.

The previous layout of a long-term ticket in Łódź:



On the rear side, there were different pictures:



Now, it is just encoded on an electronic card:



This is enough, this post is already long enough. Please, ask questions
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Old September 6th, 2017, 11:09 PM   #5
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Quote:
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Please, ask questions
Why did you revive the thread after exactly three years?
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Old September 7th, 2017, 12:39 AM   #6
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Is it exactly three years? I didn't realize, I noticed it's quite old (although not very old), but I didn't think it's exactly 3 years

I thought it's interesting, that's all.
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