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No increase on bus and rail fares in 2016

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Bus and rail fares will not increase during 2016, Transport Minister Michelle McIlveen announced today.

The Minister said she has taken the decision to freeze fares in light of low fuel costs and a desire by Translink to grow the number of people using bus and rail services.

Michelle McIlveen said: “The record growth in passenger journeys over the last decade, specifically on the railways, has been remarkable. Significant investment in public transport fleet and infrastructure by the Northern Ireland Executive has encouraged more people to take the train or bus rather than use the car.

“In the last year, however, Translink experienced less growth on rail and bus services than it would have expected. When this is combined with a difficult economic climate and relatively cheap fuel costs, a fare increase at this time would only deter people from using public transport.

“Following discussions with Translink, I have decided that there will be no fare increase this year. Translink will now focus its efforts on growing passenger numbers by showing how accessible and inexpensive it is to travel by bus or train.

“I believe this announcement will be widely welcomed and is good news for everyone using public transport.”

Chris Conway, Translink Group Chief Executive said: “Freezing our fares at last year’s levels is not only good news for our customers but will also help to attract even more people to choose the bus, coach and train as a better way to travel. Many of our customers tell us that using our services is already a very cost effective way for them to travel while also giving them more ‘me time’ on board to catch up with emails, internet or simply relax.

“We want to offer our customers the best value possible and are able to do this through good business management and continuous efficiency improvements across the organisation while continuing to deliver an attractive and sustainable public transport service.

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