From the news desk

Bus commuters left fuming at a 7% fair increase

Share this article

By Loushe Jordaan Gilbert

With midterm data from the Central Energy Fund (CEF) indicating a slight increase in fuel price in April, bus commuters are left with mixed emotions as Golden Arrow Bus Services (GABS) announced a 7% increase in its transport cost.

Speaking to VOC news, bus commuters said the price increase will have a dire impact on their weekly and monthly expenses.

“I take a bus from Mitchell Plain to Claremont; I work in a factory with a limited amount of money to take home at the end of the week. The increase is way too much for me and so many others, “said one of Golden Arrow commuters.

Meanwhile, A second commuter said, “There is not much we can do, but to pay the extra monies as we are unable to fight any increases. It is just one of those things that we must manage.”

A third commuter stated, “I am disappointed in the increase, it is way too much money to spend on a weekly and no matter how they try to justify the increase until they actually know how we as commuters live from salary to salary, depending on every extra rand we have, they just will not understand.”

Speaking to Ramadan AM on Tuesday morning, GABS spokesperson Bronwen Dyke Beyer said the GAB’s interim operating contract with the provincial government makes provision for adjustments to fares to offset operational cost increases.

“We remain acutely aware of the difficult economic climate in which our passengers find themselves and therefore took the unprecedented decision to delay our standard end-of-year increase which should have taken place in December 2023. Unfortunately, we are no longer able to absorb rising costs across our supply chain and must therefore increase fares by an average of 7% on 01 April 2024,” she explained.

When asked how GABS decided upon a 7% increase, Beyer said it was not just a random selection, they had to follow due process to get the amount approved.

“We had to present it to the relevant departments and justify why we felt a 7% increase was the best option. This increase is not only unavoidable but essential to ensure that GABS is able to remain sustainable and to maintain the same exceptional level of services which 96% of passengers would recommend to friends and family,” she added.

Dyke Beyer reiterated that the price change will not affect any pensioners, as GABS understands that pensioners are solely dependent on a social grant.

“We understand the concern our pensioners have, and we want to reassure them that they have nothing to worry about. We will not increase any of the cost, it will remain unchanged to ensure they have the benefit of GABS services at an affordable price,” she stressed.

VOC News

Photo: VOCfm

Share this article
WhatsApp WhatsApp us
Wait a sec, saving restore vars.