NSW increase

By: Amie Hickland

The NSW Government will increase fares by the cost of living next year, not the 2.6 per cent recommended by an independent body.

The government confirmed this week it will not increase MyZone fares to the full amount recommended by The Independent Pricing & Regulatory Tribunal, instead increasing fares in line with the cost of living only.

The IPART final report and determination, which was released in November, allows government and private bus operators to increase maximum bus fares by an average of 2.6 per cent in January 2014 and 3 per cent each year after - 0.5 per cent above expected inflation in each year.

"Under today’s decision, public transport fares will increase in line with CPI, supporting our commitment to keep prices low for customers as we continue to make improvements across public transport," says Minister for Transport Gladys Berejiklian.

"We have always said that fares will only increase in line with CPI until there are demonstrable improvements in customer service, and while we are seeing a significant change for the better, we believe there is still work to do.

From January 5, Opal customers can also save up to 13 per cent more on adult fares, compared to paper tickets that will rise in line with CPI.

Berejiklian says the Opal card rollout is progressing well, with cheaper adult Opal single fares on ferries, selected trains and bus services.

"This is a great saving and benefit for customers and why more than 38,000 Opal customers are already using the card so they never have to queue up again."

There will be no change to the $2.50 pensioner excursion tickets or Family Funday Sunday tickets.

The increases will be effective from January 5.

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