NSW paper tickets ousted

Times are changing fast in NSW with the phase out of paper bus tickets to start next year

The majority of physical paper tickets for all forms of public transport within New South Wales will be phased out from January next year.

Tap and go electronic ticketing will arrive next year, although the old-style tickets will remain beyond this date for just a few services, the NSW Government announced recently.

NSW minister for transport and infrastructure Andrew Constance says given how the public have embraced the Opal card payment system, the time is right to stop running two ticketing platforms.

"Opal is one of the great improvements to our public transport network, and it’s the right time we take the next logical step to one convenient system," he says.

Bus users are advised to upgrade to Opal as soon as possible, to give them time to adapt to the new system they will soon have no option but to use.

After January 1 customers will only be able to purchase single fares for buses without the use of an Opal Card, but not return tickets.

Constance says many of the ticket s offered had become obsolete or fallen out of favour with public transport users since the introduction of Opal.

"Sales of the once popular MyBus Travel Ten have fallen by more than 75 per cent over the last 12 months as people have switched to Opal."

Some old concession fares like the Off Peak Return Tram Link sell only four tickets a week and just 11 Light Rail Day Passes are sold each day now.

Seniors may not be impressed with the phase out of the Pensioner Excursion Ticket, but Constance says an intensive campaign is being rolled out to inform the changes.

"There’s another five months for others to get on board with Gold Opal and we’ve had 370,000 pensioners and seniors sign up so far.

"It’s the same cheap fares – and you only ever need to buy one permanent ticket and you’re always ready for travel.

"I urge people to not leave their change over to the last minute."

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