Free child weekends increase patronage on public transport
Free child weekends more than double patronage on public transport
24 September 2019
The number of children using Auckland’s public transport network at the weekend has increased by more than 120 per cent since free travel for under-16s was introduced, compared to the same period last year.
Auckland Mayor Phil Goff proposed free weekend fares for children as part of Auckland Council’s 2019/20 Annual Budget. The proposal came into effect on 7 September.
In the three weekends since Auckland Transport started offering free fares for children, 22,945 children travelled, up from 10,377 in the same period last year. In total, 65,457 trips were made over the three weekends, an increase of 37 per cent.
Phil Goff says the increase in children and adults using public transport reflects Aucklanders’ willingness to embrace car-free travel.
“Free public transport for under-16s aims to encourage more people to leave their cars at home and use our public transport network, as well as to encourage the next generation of public transport users.
“The success of the free fares programme so far shows how willing Aucklanders are to use public transport when it is made accessible and affordable.
“Every person using public transport instead of driving helps to reduce traffic congestion and carbon emissions, so it’s great to see how many Aucklanders are already making the most of the free travel.
“Thank you to North Shore councillors Chris Darby and Richard Hills, who helped to champion this initiative and worked tirelessly to get it across the line.”