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Old June 1st, 2017, 12:50 AM   #36281
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Next Monday is a holiday in Austria, so I was considering to drive to south of France (Nice) as I have never been there until now. The hotels that I found were pretty espensive, but when I calculated and got to 160+ Euros just for the motorway tolls for a weekend break, I canceled my plans. That's insainely expensive

Regarding internet connection: yesterday I have seen in Ireland many advertisments on the side of the road offering "high speed cable internet" at 70 Mb/s. Meanwhile in Romania you can get 1 Gbps at 10 Euros per month.
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Old June 1st, 2017, 05:42 AM   #36282
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Eastern European countries have the best internet access offers in the World outside South Korea. They were a bit late to the game, and at the time Internet became popular for the masses, telecoms over there leapfrogged older implementations and as a result Internet in Romania, Hungary, Czechia and in the Baltic States is very fast. It is cheaper because of local market conditions (fixed Internet access in dense urban areas is a cash-cow for telecoms) that won't accept higher prices commonly see in Western Europe.
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Old June 1st, 2017, 02:12 PM   #36283
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i don't like it at all. the prices of road transport will go to the skies with that.
That's true. It doesn't pay off to drive in long run and to travel long distances on European highways. Some countries, as some of the forum members have already mentioned, have non reasonable high tools like Slovenia. You pay the same amount of money if you drive one day or 10 days. You can't get a transit toll. Instead you must pay full price like you will be driving there for a month.

It is cheaper and more relaxing to travel with low cost airlines. Still you don't have that freedom when you use the car...
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Old June 1st, 2017, 02:39 PM   #36284
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I consider it reasonable. Passenger car, occupied solely by a driver is one of the most polluting transport mode at all.

We have been recently discussing the mobile network plans. Likewise, you pay for something you would never ever use (5000 free minutes, etc.).

Slovenia is an extreme, indeed. But I don't see a reason for one day vignette. The process of procurement and technical arrangement would be much more costly than the profit from the vignette.
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Old June 1st, 2017, 02:57 PM   #36285
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But I don't see a reason for one day vignette.
They want to earn as much as they can. Slovenes know that they are the shortest link between Hungary and Italy, and also between countries on the east such as Serbia, Romania, Turkey, Russia etc. and they are exploiting that. A lots of Italians travel on the other side of Adriatic in Croatia.
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Old June 1st, 2017, 04:36 PM   #36286
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They want to earn as much as they can. Slovenes know that they are the shortest link between Hungary and Italy, and also between countries on the east such as Serbia, Romania, Turkey, Russia etc. and they are exploiting that. A lots of Italians travel on the other side of Adriatic in Croatia.
Yeah, I am not saying that Slovenian rate is fair considering the fact that there is much tourist transport through. But generally the concept of a 1-day vignette is a nonsense.
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Old June 1st, 2017, 07:27 PM   #36287
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I don't think €15 is expensive to get from Hungary to Italy. As for the Koper stretch, just use the old road, it's not even 10 km, there's way too much drama around this.
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Old June 1st, 2017, 07:35 PM   #36288
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With vignettes there are always some routes where motorists have to pay a steep toll for a short stretch.

But on the other hand, an Austrian 10-day vignette will cost you the same as less than an hour of driving on the French or Spanish toll road.

Well, who believes motoring tax reforms will actually benefit drivers? Taxation only goes up except for some botched environmental incentive schemes. You could drive the large Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV almost for free in the Netherlands, while in practice most drivers consume 10-12L/100 km because they never or rarely charge the vehicle. Electric car incentives only benefit the wealthiest segment of the population. If you're used to buy a car for around € 10,000, you're not going to buy an almost tax-free € 90,000 Tesla. It's welfare for the rich.
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Old June 1st, 2017, 10:58 PM   #36289
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With vignettes there are always some routes where motorists have to pay a steep toll for a short stretch.

But on the other hand, an Austrian 10-day vignette will cost you the same as less than an hour of driving on the French or Spanish toll road.

Well, who believes motoring tax reforms will actually benefit drivers? Taxation only goes up except for some botched environmental incentive schemes. You could drive the large Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV almost for free in the Netherlands, while in practice most drivers consume 10-12L/100 km because they never or rarely charge the vehicle. Electric car incentives only benefit the wealthiest segment of the population. If you're used to buy a car for around € 10,000, you're not going to buy an almost tax-free € 90,000 Tesla. It's welfare for the rich.
We have generous subsidies for electric cars in Slovakia. But it does not concern hybrids, which are 5.000 - 7.000 € more expensive, but purely electric cars that starts at 40.000 €.

Ordinary people are not motivated to buy such cars (though I think they do not resolve the problems with congestions) - it is just a toy for upper social class who anyway prefers SUVs like BMW or Mercedes.
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Old June 2nd, 2017, 08:00 AM   #36290
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Temperature +5, NW wind 9 m/s, feels like -1 degrees. Warning for heavy wind, up to 20 m/s in gusts. Summer is a wonderful thing.
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Old June 2nd, 2017, 03:57 PM   #36291
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Temperature +5, NW wind 9 m/s, feels like -1 degrees. Warning for heavy wind, up to 20 m/s in gusts. Summer is a wonderful thing.
Photo taken on May 31 in Murmansk, Russia


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In real life, electronic toll collection was first introduced in Bergen, Norway in 1986, and well into the 21th century many countries still struggle to implement it.

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Old June 2nd, 2017, 05:19 PM   #36292
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I consider it reasonable. Passenger car, occupied solely by a driver is one of the most polluting transport mode at all.
Aeroplanes are even more polluting.

The pressure should be put on train transport, which is ecological. Something should be done to simplify the international train travels. Nowadays, for example, it's much more expensive to cross the Polish-Czech or Polish-Slovak border on the train (at least in the "official" way, there are some tricks know by few, allowing to make it cheaper), then to travel the same distance internally. And the state of the trans-border train connections is not so good at all.

In the EU they are discussing about introducing free InterRail for the youth... which won't solve any actual problems. A more needed thing is, for example, a common ticket sale system (or development of the one which already exists, but has quite limited functionality). Now, I can buy in Poland a ticket for a local train, let's say, in France - but it will be in the international fare, which, actually, just in this case, may be even slightly cheaper than the local one - but it definitely won't be so when someone buys in France a ticket for a local train in Poland. Anyway, no local special offers will be recognized, nothing like that. And this could be changed.

Quote:
Slovenia is an extreme, indeed.
You can find tutorials on YouTube how to cross Slovenia, for example, on the way from Poland to Croatia, using only standard roads, without toll motorways. It's not a big problem to use a normal road instead of motorway for less than 100 km, and it allows to save much money.

No sign of cold in Poland. The last days have been quite hot actually.
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Old June 2nd, 2017, 05:34 PM   #36293
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The pressure should be put on train transport, which is ecological.
Some experts argue that nearly all passenger train services would end with the widespread adoption of self-driving cars, except for a limited amount of high-potential corridors.

Self-driving cars could offer transportation to anyone who can't or don't want to drive, while also offering much more efficient A to B travel (even today with all the congestion the average car trip requires less than half the travel time a similar trip on public transport would require).

Passenger trains are expensive to operate relative to usage compared to other modes of transportation. Many jurisdictions spend 50-60% of their transportation budget on trains which carry 10-15% of passenger kilometers.

However there is quite some debate about how quickly level 5 autonomous vehicles would be adopted. Predictions about events years or decades into the future often turn out to be highly unreliable.
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Old June 2nd, 2017, 08:01 PM   #36294
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The question is the congestion when all the public transport passengers switch to those autonomous cars. It's already too high in the cities, and when it will be even more cars - it's hard to believe what may be the effects.

On the other hand - it is said that self-driving cars only do not need traffic lights at all, they can adjust the speed to the road conditions by means of some smart algorithms which will keep the traffic fluent. So maybe it will solve this problem.

And I don't think all the people will switch from public transport to self-driving cars. Maybe except for the biggest capitals, it is so, that there is very few people who use public transport just because that is more convenient to them. Even though maybe it's no more so in some more civilized countries and cities, in Poland, for example, it's usually faster to travel by car than by city public transport even in the traffic jams, even though trams have separate tracks and buses have bus lanes. Because: you must wait for the vehicle, often you must change and wait again, you must walk to the stop, the route is often not optimal for you, stopping at the stops also takes time. Most people who use the public transport do it for the financial reasons. So unless a huge overturn of the car prices happens with the popularization of electric and autonomous cars, so that everyone can afford one, people will still be using the public transport.

Although car sharing may be a danger for the public transport. But it will be anyway more expensive than the collective public transport by means of the matter.
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Old June 2nd, 2017, 08:33 PM   #36295
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kpc21 View Post
Aeroplanes are even more polluting.

The pressure should be put on train transport, which is ecological. Something should be done to simplify the international train travels. Nowadays, for example, it's much more expensive to cross the Polish-Czech or Polish-Slovak border on the train (at least in the "official" way, there are some tricks know by few, allowing to make it cheaper), then to travel the same distance internally. And the state of the trans-border train connections is not so good at all.

In the EU they are discussing about introducing free InterRail for the youth... which won't solve any actual problems. A more needed thing is, for example, a common ticket sale system (or development of the one which already exists, but has quite limited functionality). Now, I can buy in Poland a ticket for a local train, let's say, in France - but it will be in the international fare, which, actually, just in this case, may be even slightly cheaper than the local one - but it definitely won't be so when someone buys in France a ticket for a local train in Poland. Anyway, no local special offers will be recognized, nothing like that. And this could be changed.


You can find tutorials on YouTube how to cross Slovenia, for example, on the way from Poland to Croatia, using only standard roads, without toll motorways. It's not a big problem to use a normal road instead of motorway for less than 100 km, and it allows to save much money.

No sign of cold in Poland. The last days have been quite hot actually.
If you compare pollution/passenger/distance, maybe it is more favourable for aircraft.


What you've mentioned about rail transport: Indeed, it is too expensive (especially international trains in Europe) due to incompatibility. But now, the EU pushes to implement the so called 4th railway package and adopt so called interoperability. Now you have different countries with different rail transport rules, systems, etc. This all should be united and you should be literally able to drive a locomotive with any restrictions through whole Europe. It is not possible now.

Furthermore, trains are more expensive due to fixed expenses - fuel or electricity are often just a small portion of all. Imagine a train operating a small municipality twice a day. The crew (train driver, inspectors, dispatcher) must be paid even if the train is stopped somewhere in a field. In winter, the train must have running engine due to heating.

On the other hand, it is very convenient transport mode - you can have a walk if you are tired, go to dining car, you have wi-fi which brings you unlimited activities.

Unlimited will surely not resolve the congestion problem. But anyway, the most essential disadvantage of car ownership is, that average car is 98 % of its lifespan parked somewhere. It has been estimated, that 30 % of cars are drivers looking for their parking spot cruising around the same block. Autonomous cars would be active much more time than conventional cars. One car would not transport one family (or single driver) during a rush our, but several. It may be a perfect combo together with sufficient support for public transport.
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Old June 2nd, 2017, 08:42 PM   #36296
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Autonomous cars would also significantly reduce the number of parking spaces, especially in areas with little space. Even if there would still be car ownership (as opposed to a transportation service), the car could park itself elsewhere outside a congested area, so there doesn't need to be much if any parking at destinations.

However, as with all new future / planned technologies there is optimism bias with such developments. It may or may not be implemented as fast as some boosters say.
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Old June 2nd, 2017, 08:57 PM   #36297
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The question is the congestion when all the public transport passengers switch to those autonomous cars. It's already too high in the cities, and when it will be even more cars - it's hard to believe what may be the effects.
Yes, in cities, especially in city center related traffic, public transport may be much more effective than any type of cars. No road network could bear if the passengers of S- and U-Bahn (suburban and urban railways) of Munich or Frankfurt would change to car (even if it's a self-driving car which does not need parking place in the city).
However a vast majority of traffic has nothing to do with cities or stays in the outskirts where public transport can not be effective. Metros, intercity railways and suburban railways may have a bright future even beside autonomous cars. But anyithing else? Hardly.
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Old June 2nd, 2017, 10:11 PM   #36298
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The idea is that autonomous vehicles could get a much higher throughput on roads. However these are just theories and nobody really knows how it's going to play out exactly. In particular the design of roads for autonomous vehicles in urban centers. Some say it could drastically reduce footprint, others say it would need a whole new generation of segregated infrastructure for autonomous vehicles.

For example equipping the entire road system with sensors and connected vehicle infrastructure seems unlikely given the fact that many jurisdictions hardly spend money to upgrade traffic signal timing. How are they going to fund a much more demanding task such as connecting their whole road system with vehicles? (the V2I concept - Vehicle to Infrastructure).
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Old June 2nd, 2017, 10:39 PM   #36299
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I don't think high capacity subways, or heavy trafficked railways, are under such risk from autonomous vehicles because of pure geometry.

Autonomous vehicles will mostly compete with low-ridership buses, low-performance trams that mix with traffic, and some twice-a-day train lines out there.
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Old June 3rd, 2017, 02:55 AM   #36300
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The idea is that autonomous vehicles could get a much higher throughput on roads. However these are just theories and nobody really knows how it's going to play out exactly. In particular the design of roads for autonomous vehicles in urban centers. Some say it could drastically reduce footprint, others say it would need a whole new generation of segregated infrastructure for autonomous vehicles.

For example equipping the entire road system with sensors and connected vehicle infrastructure seems unlikely given the fact that many jurisdictions hardly spend money to upgrade traffic signal timing. How are they going to fund a much more demanding task such as connecting their whole road system with vehicles? (the V2I concept - Vehicle to Infrastructure).
The biggest change would not be the autonomous vehicle on its own. But the autonomous vehicle working in a grid. Sure, some people would not like to share the vehicle with anyone else, but others would not mind that.

You need to look at the autonomous vehicle grid as a public transport system with one purpose only and that is to optimize the transport of all the given people at the given moment from all their points A to all their points B with given constraints (size of the vehicles, number of vehicles, number of people, entry exit points en route, etc etc).

I am quite sure that the congestion would, in fact, drop with such a system.

Some mass transport as metro, trams, trains would still be needed though, it would need to be implemented into this system as well.
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