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Old September 2nd, 2014, 12:07 AM   #1981
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Originally Posted by radamfi View Post
Again, I think it is interesting to demonstrate the contrast in Britain, this time regarding rush hour fares. A return ticket from London to Manchester (300 km) costs 321 GBP in rush hours, more than 4 times what it costs outside rush hours (79.70 GBP). And if you book well in advance, you can get that for as little as 12.50 GBP single.
First. Yeah, privatization is for the money .

Second. We are mixing apples and oranges here a bit. Long distance operation and short distance operation is something different. It happens so, that in the Netherlands most of the train lines canīt really be considered long distance.

Third. It is something different to have peak and off peak fares for the whole network and to have pricing mechanisms for the long distance travel seats on certain lines.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 12:31 AM   #1982
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Most commuters really have no choice, but to take the train during rush hours or choose some other mode of transportation.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 12:42 AM   #1983
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You still pay a lot more in the UK for commuter trains. Take Woking to London, about 30 km. There are three return fares:

20.00 Anytime Return
16.70 Off Peak Return
13.20 Super Off Peak Return

At weekends, you can get a third off with a Network Railcard, so the Super Off Peak Return is 8.70.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 12:45 AM   #1984
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More relevant would be to look how much a monthly or a yearly ticket costs. If you are commuting to work you do it every weekday and if not you try to avoid rush hour.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 12:48 AM   #1985
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This incerase on peak fares can be easily constructed as this:

(1) All fares will be raised by an additional 10%
(2) Off-peak fares will get 56% discount instead of the current 40%

Problem solved?

In practice ,they are just increasing the gap between peak and off-peak, a gap that already exists and is quite wide - peak = 167% off-peak
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 01:07 AM   #1986
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More relevant would be to look how much a monthly or a yearly ticket costs. If you are commuting to work you do it every weekday and if not you try to avoid rush hour.
A 7 day ticket for that journey is 74.50 GBP. A month ticket is the weekly multiplied by 3.84, and yearly is priced at 40 weeks.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 01:27 AM   #1987
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You still pay a lot more in the UK for commuter trains. Take Woking to London, about 30 km. There are three return fares:

20.00 Anytime Return
16.70 Off Peak Return
13.20 Super Off Peak Return

At weekends, you can get a third off with a Network Railcard, so the Super Off Peak Return is 8.70.
A private operator. There where a government can use different tax rate, a private operator will use discriminating pricing.

Discriminating pricing is quite great if the price difference is based on e.g. luxury and not that great for the welfare, when it is based on the necessity.

I.e. imagine a pricing that would create different price for carriages with only seating, no crowd, luxurious design etc... and different price for an overcrowded carriage. Everyone could still travel in the necessary time (thus good for the welfare) and the increased price would still be extracted.

Another thing I should mention is that the peak/off peak pricing is not bad on its own. It is only bad when it is too high and meant to prevent the people from using the peak connections. I.e. there is not much wrong when people plan the not necessary trips in the off peak times. But it is very wrong when high peak prices prevent people from commuting to their work, education, or other regular business.

First there was Rail Aktief Kaart

Anyone knows what kind of discount did it give? I bet it was just a flat discount. Or if there was such a product before.

Then there was Voordeelurenabonnement
A discount, but just after 9 a.m.

Now Dal Voordeel
A discount but just after 9 a.m. and before 4 p.m. and after 6.30 p.m.
and the price difference between the peak and off peak just gets bigger.

I think that the process is clear. It is not just to temporarily motivate the people. It is a systematic change. I understand that the commuters can buy discounted yearly relation ticket that works also in the peak hours, but how does this relate to the proposed transition of the rail network to one giant metro like system? I think that rather than inventing products and pricing schemes, there should be more attention directed at the infrastructure, that would simply allow for a more robust system.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 01:33 AM   #1988
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Do many Dutch companies take advantage of the tax breaks for commuting?

http://www.answersforbusiness.nl/tax/travel-allowance
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 01:39 AM   #1989
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Quote:
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A private operator.
The British rail network is run by private operators, but some fares are regulated by government and generally increase by inflation + 1% per year. For commuter trips like Woking to London, the season ticket and peak time return is regulated. For long distance trips like London to Manchester, the off-peak return is regulated. That is why they can get away with charging 4 times as much in peak as it is unregulated. Only business people can afford those fares, and many companies now refuse to pay expenses for peak trains and make you travel off-peak and stay the night in a hotel instead.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 01:50 AM   #1990
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Do many Dutch companies take advantage of the tax breaks for commuting?

http://www.answersforbusiness.nl/tax/travel-allowance
Sure. And people can also deduce it from their taxes. http://www.belastingdienst.nl/wps/wc...enbaar_vervoer

And you have to think that this travel allowance is paid also by the public institution. Which is again just another way how the public money finance the transport.

If we would really count all the public money that pour into the PT, we would find that the non subsidized share of the costs is not that high and that free PT is really a feasible variant.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 02:04 AM   #1991
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I never quite understood the concept of travel tax allowance for commuters. It seems like a lottery where the winners are those who made inefficient housing choices...
Also, what's the point of raising peak time fares to encourage efficient choices, and then discount them...

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Originally Posted by Surel View Post
I.e. imagine a pricing that would create different price for carriages with only seating, no crowd, luxurious design etc... and different price for an overcrowded carriage. Everyone could still travel in the necessary time (thus good for the welfare) and the increased price would still be extracted.
Man, didn't you just describe the concept of every train with 1st and 2nd class?
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Last edited by Wilhem275; September 2nd, 2014 at 02:16 AM.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 02:05 AM   #1992
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Man, didn't you just describe the concept of every train with 1st and 2nd class?
Yep.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 08:17 AM   #1993
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I never quite understood the concept of travel tax allowance for commuters. It seems like a lottery where the winners are those who made inefficient housing choices...
I can understand it if it only applies to public transport as it might encourage a shift from the car. But why does the tax allowance also apply to car travel?
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 09:06 AM   #1994
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I was since ever dreaming about a wireless/contact-less solution to the ticketing fare problem. I.e. the fare for the whole journey would be automatically deducted when you get out of the vehicle at your end destination, without you doing anything, but carrying a card or some other device with you.
This is what SBB is working on. "BEBO", or "Be In, Be Out", in stead of the CICO principle used by the OV chipcard. The system would even be able to detect if you're traveling first or second class, making spontaneous use of first class possible.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 09:28 AM   #1995
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Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
The major concern for privacy-meant people in that aspect are not public transportation credit cards, but cell phone/computer/tablet access logs and, in the near future, advanced facial recognition apps + cameras everywhere (both CCTV and on cellphones of people)

And the major concern for NS is leaves on the tracks, but if your point was to distract me then a photo of a squirrel would work much better than a non sequitur.

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I'm huge fan of "paperless" systems They look, feel and convey a message of a futuristic, efficient, super-connected and modern system, whereas paper ticket smack of steam boilers.

You know, not many things would convey a message of futurism than a giant black cube in the middle of the city, just sitting there. And building it would sure be more efficient than blocking the most convenient passages through Centraal. It would already be modern, and if you want super-connected you can make it tweet. My point being, in case your missing it, that the visions of future you're referring to are actually dystopian.

And to me, paper tickets convey the feel of a tried, efficient and working system, and OV chipkaart smacks of woo-woo fads and clunky experiments. And good future is of course realizing that making money is not the point of public transport.

Last edited by aleander; September 2nd, 2014 at 10:10 AM.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 09:29 AM   #1996
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Doesn't matter. It's the principle of your story: Being in a hurry and therefore not having a valid proof of payment.
My point is that you can be in a hurry through no fault of your own. Like in our case where a 3 minute transfer in Leeuwarden became a 1 minute transfer because the IC was 2 minutes late.

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Are S-bahns operated by DB? That would explain a lot.
You were not aware of that?

But anyway, it ought not to matter. If you arrive at Zürich airport you can buy a ticket to the city from any ticket vending machine there, and it will be valid on any mode of public transportation going to downtown. That is user friendliness.

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Buy a valid NMBS ticket then. It's puzzeling to me why you even ask. Of course there have to NMBS tickets available at a ticket machine of some sort. And I guess the NS reader is for unforseen circumstances.
You don't understand what I'm trying to tell here. The service from Maastricht to Eijsden is a domestic NS service. It just so happens that it is performed with an NMBS train (as part of the Maastricht - Liege service).
So you need an NS ticket.
This is just an example to demonstrate that to the user it is not always obvious if he/she is transferring between operators.
I asked two NS conductors about this, and they didn't have a good answer ready. My point is that "what is written on the train" is not always the correct indicator of which operator is responsible.
(For example, during the whole Fyra debacle few passengers were aware that in fact Thalys and Fyra had the same operators, and that thus you could use your Fyra ticket on a Thalys when a Fyra got cancelled).

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Other companies don't sell dateless tickets? NS used to. You had to validate it. And of course the tickets with the date on them have been validated the moment they go through the ticket machine and get a date/time stamp.
Undated NMBS tickets you fill out the date yourself... But I would guess that in most countries most tickets already have a date on them. The "validation" that is required in France and Italy is actually rather superfluous. International tickets used to be valid for two months, and didn't need validation anywhere before use either.
It's quite entertaining to see in Geneva how people having bought a ticket to France try to use the validator in the French section, being unaware that this is completely unnecessary.
Now ask yourself, if a ticket Geneve - Lyon bought from SNCF requires validation, but one bought from SBB not, what is really the purpose of the validation?
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 09:32 AM   #1997
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And to me, paper tickets convey the feel of a tried, efficient and working system, and OV smacks of woo-woo fads and clunky experiments.
The big advantage of paper tickets is that the user can easily verify himself that he has the correct ticket. That makes it possible to also make the user himself responsible for having the correct ticket.
If you make it harder for the user to ascertain that he is in order you make it also harder for the transportation company to be tough on fare evaders, because you've now given them a whole new collection of plausible excuses....
I think NS is going to discover this quite soon.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 09:34 AM   #1998
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Only business people can afford those fares, and many companies now refuse to pay expenses for peak trains and make you travel off-peak and stay the night in a hotel instead.
Which is a good thing, if you think about it...
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 09:45 AM   #1999
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Third, I don't think that a public service should be there to make money. It's first and utmost goal is to produce welfare, not create profit.
Do you know what profit is? It means that what you produce is worth more than what you consume. if you do this, you do increase total welfare.
Of course, all externalities must be taken in to acount, and PT has (sometimes quite large) positive externalities that do justify in some cases a public subsidy. But the operators themselves should nevertheless still try to make a profit.
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Old September 2nd, 2014, 10:26 AM   #2000
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Which is a good thing, if you think about it...

No, making people stay in hotels is in no way a good thing. What you'd want would be people living closer to their jobs, but as long as we can't guarantee that families will be able to find jobs in one place, that isn't something we can really fix.

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Do you know what profit is? It means that what you produce is worth more than what you consume. if you do this, you do increase total welfare.

No. It only means you sold it for more than it cost you to produce it. Just because it made you a profit doesn't mean your customer couldn't get a bigger profit in another manner. In fact, absent regulations, it often makes sense to reduce the welfare of your customers, business partners and employees, usually to increase their dependence on you.

This risks going off topic, but it's pretty obvious that I'm seeing a large benefit in the freedom to move acquired by making at least urban and preferably suburban public traffic funded fully from tax money.
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