Concessionary travel will be offered on Edinburgh trams
The council has announced that in common with the way that Lothian Buses operate at the moment there will be a “single fully integrated flat fare regardless of the distance travelled” except for journeys which travel to the west of Gogar. This means that the fare to the airport will be calculated differently, in the same way as the bus fare is now.
The cards used on Lothian Buses at present will be migrated for use on the combined bus and tram network, and Lothian Buses current strategy of offering pre-paid tickets at a discount will be continued and extended to the trams too.
Transport Convenor, Councillor Lesley Hinds said:-“The ticketing system will ensure that it is easy to move from tram to bus with a single ticket. Notwithstanding the details of all of the tickets offered such as day tickets or Ridacards in general terms the fares for trams and buses will be the same.”
The question of concessionary travel on Edinburgh Trams is covered in the reports for next week’s council meeting which state that the council wants to offer concessionary fares for trams as well as buses, but they will have to set up a whole new scheme to cover this, and this requires the approval of Transport Scotland. Keith Brown Transport Minister has already said that The Scottish Government would not support any concessionary travel under the nationwide concessionary travel scheme.
It is planned that any concessionary fares on the trams will be made available to all Edinburgh residents, or those who are Edinburgh council tax payers. The council say that such a scheme is expected to cost them around £200,000 to implement.
Councillor Hinds said earlier today:-“If you can go on a bus for free you will be able to go on a tram for free, but only if you are an Edinburgh resident. We believe that if we wish to have integrated transport then passengers must be able to access the bus and tram easily, and concessionary travel is therefore important to us.
“There will be a concessionary card and the ticket machines will be able to work out what concessions you are entitled to.”
Councillor Hinds also said that there will be some public training on how to use all these ticketing systems before the trams start running.
Bus users will all be able to use their Scottish National Concessionary Scheme tickets in the same way as before.
The next big announcement about trams will be in September when the council expects to be in a position to announce the actual start date when the trams will run from Edinburgh Airport.
The papers for the council meeting next week will be published on the council website on Friday morning.