The free tram zone is a gimmick that needs to go

 
Topic moved from News by bevans on 09 Jun 2020 11:45
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
This may just be the case now with the COVID-19 issues and the problem with overcrowding.




The free tram zone is a gimmick that needs to go

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  route14 Chief Commissioner

Agree, but perhaps providing an option of single journey tickets instead of making occasional travelers buying a non-refundable Myki and paying a periodical fare would be more user-friendly.
  NSWGR8022 Deputy Commissioner

Location: From the lands of Journalism and Free Speech
When in Melbourne last February it was near impossible to get on a tram in Bourke Street but free trams is an excellent idea and helped me out a lot.
  route14 Chief Commissioner

And Yarra Trams decided to withdraw the City shuttles such as route 31 and 95, claiming that they confused passengers because they only operated for part of the day.  This phenomenon is best described as counterfeit currency expelling genuine currency.  The City shorts effectively alleviated the lunch-time peak demand, but it would have been a waste of capacity operating them to the suburban termini of regular routes.  Bad luck if anyone get confused about them.
  Fatty Deputy Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
Free public transport is a great idea. In my opinion ALL public transport should be free.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Agree, but perhaps providing an option of single journey tickets instead of making occasional travelers buying a non-refundable Myki and paying a periodical fare would be more user-friendly.
route14

FTZ is a great asset.
  davesvline Chief Commissioner

Location: 1983-1998
Nup, ditch it. $5 flat fee.
Cant afford it.... Bugger off and walk - it's not like the exercise will kill you.
No issue with having a concession/disabled fare for it either. That's usually merit based. A free for all ride is not. User should pay.
Don't kid yourself either, cos a user somewhere else on the system is subsidising it - and they shouldn't be.
YOU, as a user of it should be.

Regards
  TrackRailroad Train Controller

Location: Frankston Line
I also agree the free tram zone should be scrapped, especially in light of covid 19 and the need to avoid overcrowding. Most users would be coming from outside the free zone anyway and have already paid on their Myki, so it's not really free.

Tourists and business people whom it primarily serves in the city should have to pay like everyone else, the service is not free, as the cost is subsidised by taxpayers and other transport users. Though I think a single use paper ticket really needs to be available, it is not practical to make people buy a Myki and than load money on to it for one single trip.
  route14 Chief Commissioner

I thought a two-hour ticket is something like $4.40, so a single journey ticket, if they plan to implement it, should be around $3.
  don_dunstan The Ghost of George Stephenson

Location: Adelaide proud
When I lived in Melbourne the "free tram zone" was rubbish, an insult to the people who pay. The only reason they have it is because they realised that they can't possibly police the trams within the intensively-used CBD area. So instead of trying to police it they just give it away instead.
  route14 Chief Commissioner

Some people evade fare because that's what they would normally do anyway, but I insist that some do it because of the complexity for an occasional traveler to buy a Myki and pay the periodical fare.
  don_dunstan The Ghost of George Stephenson

Location: Adelaide proud
Some people evade fare because that's what they would normally do anyway, but I insist that some do it because of the complexity for an occasional traveler to buy a Myki and pay the periodical fare.
route14
If you go to Magistrate's court and fight it you'll win every single time; the VIC government doesn't want people to know that but it's the truth.
  Heihachi_73 Chief Commissioner

Location: Terminating at Ringwood
Scrap the Free Tram Zone, but retain a free option besides the City Circle Tram, there aren't enough trams as it is with the maroon W6/W7 trams being banned from the CC, let alone the size of them vs. a B2 etc.

Anything to kick the freeloaders off the 96 and 109 at least... The 109 in particular is a nightmare between Parliament and Crown Casino, the C1s simply aren't big enough for the sheer amount of people cramming in (let alone when it's three useless A classes in a row e.g. a 109 followed by a 48 followed by a 12 and then two minutes later an almost empty E class on an 11 which no-one had a single brain cell to wait for).
  duttonbay Minister for Railways

When I lived in Melbourne the "free tram zone" was rubbish, an insult to the people who pay. The only reason they have it is because they realised that they can't possibly police the trams within the intensively-used CBD area. So instead of trying to police it they just give it away instead.
don_dunstan
Do you feel the same way about the free tram zone in Adelaide?
  Fatty Deputy Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
I'm quite surprised by the "this service is too popular so let's remove the demand" mindset. Makes no sense to me.
  Heihachi_73 Chief Commissioner

Location: Terminating at Ringwood
It's more of the fact that the vast majority of people have already paid to get to the city (Zone 1 myki fare) thus rendering it almost pointless.

Replacing the Free Tram Zone with a dedicated free service would alleviate this problem. For example, reinstate the 31 as an alternative to the City Circle (but running modern trams for DDA purposes - a crummy old D1 or three would be enough, and Malvern would hardly miss them given that on some routes you can count the accessible stops south of the CBD on one hand). City Circle retains the W classes to keep the tourists happy while the 31 would provide relief for paying passengers (of course, a decent-sized tram would be needed as running a single A class every 20 minutes just wouldn't cut it). Of course though, that would still leave the issue of having no free transport in the north-south direction (e.g. Swanston/Elizabeth Sts) so another tram route would need to be implemented.

The polar opposite of the FTZ is probably the Early Bird fare, which is free around the entire suburban train network but completely useless if you have to catch a bus or a tram just to get to the station (no wonder the station carparks are always full).
  justarider Deputy Commissioner

Location: Bored at home
It's more of the fact that the vast majority of people have already paid to get to the city (Zone 1 myki fare) thus rendering it almost pointless.
Heihachi_73

That says it all. Miki pax have already paid for as many CBD trips as they need.

It's not MY tram as some seem to suggest, it's all of OUR tram. If some "interloper" gets a seat instead of me, toughen up petal, they will get off soon.

The relatively small number of  visitors (regions, interstate, overseas) getting "free" are the vey people that should be encouraged to move around the  city and spend.

Normally I agree with what Daniel Bowen has to say, but re-tweeting a news clip that stars himself and pretending it's another's support is beyond the pale.

cheers
John
EDIT- didn't really need to mention regional visitors, they already have all day zone 1/2 as part of V/line ticket.
  Tony M. Locomotive Fireman

From my experience, a large number of the people getting on and off a tram within the free tram zone are coming to or from a train station, which suggests they've already paid for their trip. The other main destinations are outside the FTZ at either Melbourne Uni - where the ticket inspectors are usually hard at work - or Crown (where inspectors are rarely seen), which may suggest something about the underlying reasoning.

From what I remember, it was introduced largely because it's impossible to check tickets on crowded CBD trams, having everyone check on with their Mykis was slowing the trams down, and expecting tourists to purchase a Myki card for a day or two's visit was seen as a bit much. As none of those things have changed, getting rid of the FTZ without some kind of replacement is a step backwards - as some have suggested, a separate free tram service seems like a good start.
  Upven Locomotive Driver

I find it rather unusual that the PTUA normally supports virtually anything to get people out of their cars and onto public transport, but doesn’t support this. Free inner-city public transport isn’t unique to Melbourne either. FTZ removes the hassle, like others have said, of tapping on when it’s usually already paid for.
  BrentonGolding Chief Commissioner

Location: Maldon Junction
I find it rather unusual that the PTUA normally supports virtually anything to get people out of their cars and onto public transport, but doesn’t support this. Free inner-city public transport isn’t unique to Melbourne either. FTZ removes the hassle, like others have said, of tapping on when it’s usually already paid for.
Maybe they've tried to catch a Route 57 service from Melbourne Central to Norf Melbourne. That's enough to put anyone off the idea of an FTZ for life.......
  NSWGR8022 Deputy Commissioner

Location: From the lands of Journalism and Free Speech
I find it rather unusual that the PTUA normally supports virtually anything to get people out of their cars and onto public transport, but doesn’t support this. Free inner-city public transport isn’t unique to Melbourne either. FTZ removes the hassle, like others have said, of tapping on when it’s usually already paid for.
Upven

Can more trams be added to the routes in the city with the most passenger numbers during peak hours?  I seem to recall years ago extra trams would run in the busiest times and not the full route length.  If trams in the CBD are so busy then run more and shunt between the edges of the city.
  Goose13 Station Master

Location: Having a sook about Southern cross's western wall
The inquiry into its future has had some good points raised: IE lack of data collected on ftz users. I would agree with NSWGR8022 in that if it is to continue and free users contribute predominately to crowding more ftz/city exclusive services should be run if they can be to help w crowding.
Not sure what others have experienced, but any time I used trams in the city last year they were defiantly more crowded than the "no-seat" threshold and pretty much always approaching sardine analogy levels.
  route14 Chief Commissioner

As I have mentioned, Yarra Trams decided to discontinue partial services to minimize public confusion, when they should really be trying to serve those who do understand the system, and bad luck if you are confused.  Those who keep asking "Does this tram go to the City" will keep doing so regardless of what you display in the destination or whatever your arrangements are.

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