Policy benefits

Queenslanders are taking advantage of the State Government’s free travel after weekly journeys

Record numbers of bus, train and ferry passengers are taking advantage of the Queensland Government’s free travel after nine weekly journeys.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson says since the policy was introduced almost two years ago about 78,500 people a week are benefiting from it.

"As part of our strong plan for a brighter future we are delivering real savings for passengers with more than 7.1 million free journeys taken since June 2012," he says.

"Many of these trips would not have been taken without the incentive of free travel with the policy encouraging passengers to choose to get out of their cars and on to public transport.

"Under our policy a passenger using their go card travelling to and from work five days a week can travel home for free on Friday and then enjoy free travel all weekend."

Emerson says the plan is working with patronage ahead of its target.

There were 176.7 million trips taken in 2013-14 which is more than one million additional trips than in the previous year.

He says while more passengers were receiving free travel, the percentage of people reaching the benefit mid-week had only increased by 0.1 per cent, showing there was no evidence of rorting.

"Latest figures show 0.6 per cent of go cards reach a free trip on a Wednesday compared with 0.5 per cent before the policy was introduced negating claims there is wide-spread rorting of the policy," he says.

The nine and free policy is budgeted to cost $38 million over four years.

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