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Executive Council endorses higher tram fares

2022-06-07 16:54

The Executive Council on Tuesday approved fare increases for trams, which would see adult fares climb from HK$2.6 to HK$3.

Fares for those under 12 and elderly people are also set to rise from HK$1.3 to HK$1.5, and from HK$1.2 to HK$1.3 per ride respectively, while tourist tickets will be canceled.

A government spokesman said that the government should ensure that Hong Kong Tramways Limited would have sound financial capability in providing economical, efficient and quality tram services at reasonable fares.

"Hong Kong Tramways Limited has been providing emission-free and affordable services over the years. It has a unique historical significance and has always been received by the local community and visitors, and has represented the collective memory of Hong Kong citizens,” a government statement wrote.

It also noted that the tramway company has implemented various improvement projects as well as introduced innovative measures to enhance tram services with a view to providing a safer and more comfortable experience for passengers, while preserving its historical value.

“The government considered the fare increase necessary for maintaining Hong Kong Tramways Limited's stable operation, and that the proposed increase level is acceptable," it added.

The tramway company said earlier that ridership in 2020 fell by 24 percent year-on-year, and although it bounced back by 16 percent last year, the numbers had yet to return to the levels before the pandemic, and a HK$3 million loss was recorded. 

The company added they are in dire need of a fare adjustment amid the financial crisis they are now facing and pointed out that it would be impossible for them to continue operations if they didn't have a subsidy from the Employment Support Scheme. 

According to documents submitted to the Legislative Council by the Transport and Housing Bureau, the trams company last increased its fares in July 2018, and it proposed increasing the fare for adults to HK$2.9 and that for children to HK$1.4. 

From:The Standard