Queensland Government 'reducing fare cost' under public transport overhaul

Children under the age of 15 using Go Cards will travel for free on weekends, in a major overhaul of south-east Queensland's public transport which could save some commuters over $1,000 a year.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has announced the results of a long-awaited review, which will see the number of zones reduced from 23 to 8 from next year.

The cost of a single zone of travel in peak time will also drop from $3.35 to $3.20.

The Government estimates more than 93 per cent of public transport users will save money.

"Everywhere I go people are talking about the cost of living, and we are listening," Ms Palaszczuk said.

A Gold Coast - Brisbane commuter would no longer travel between 15 zones, but five, saving $1,196 a year.

Commuters from Goodna, Strathpine, or Samford would save $899 a year.

A commuter who travels a single zone would save $1.30 a week.

The off-peak period will also be extended, to between 7:00pm and 6:00am and between 8:30am and 3:30pm.

It is hoped the revamp of fares will attract an extra eight million new public transport users a year, which would take seven million cars off state roads every year.

Transport Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said the reduced fares could cost the Government as much as $210 million in lost revenue over the next four years.

The review declared the nine paid trips then free travel plan a failure - 85 per cent of commuters did not qualify and patronage fell by more than two million trips.

It will be replaced by a new plan which will see a 50 per cent discount on fares after eight paid journeys during a week.

Furthermore, fares will not increase this year and next, and the "one, two, free" initiative for pensioners will remain.

Asylum seekers and those on the Newstart allowance will also be able to access concessions from early 2017.

Source: ABC News

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