Sunday, December 23, 2012

2013 World Fare Comparison - Part 1

Go card or Myki - which costs more?
Last updated 29/12/2012 7am.

It is the time of year again when BrizCommuter compares train fares between different cities around the world. For 2013, the LNP Queensland Government and TransLink have increased fares in SE Queensland by an extortionate 7.5%. This is being touted as half of the previous ALP Government's planned 15% fare rise, but as a Rail Back on Track member recently stated, the halving of the fare rise is "like a thug only threatening to break one leg instead of two".

Cities well known for their high cost of living, such as Tokyo, Moscow, London, Stockholm, and Oslo have again been included. Also, the top ten most liveable cities are also included in the list. For this fare comparison we are looking at a 5km train or light rail journey from an inner suburb to the city centre (CBD), using the cheapest available adult peak single fare (this can include up to 10 multi-trip tickets, but not weekly or other season tickets). Exchange rates are as of the 23rd December 2012. Fares are as of the 7th January 2013.

Top 10 most expensive:

Oslo - $4.65
London (Underground/Overground) - $4.35 (Note: National Rail fares $3.73)
Brisbane - $3.85
Stockholm - $3.67
Liverpool - $3.65 (Note: Similar to most other UK cities with rail systems)
Sydney - $3.60
Helsinki - $3.54
Melbourne - $3.50
Adelaide - $3.19
Lausanne - $3.15

Selected other cities:

Berlin - $3.04
Toronto - $2.90
Calgary - $2.90
Ottawa - $2.76
Auckland - $2.70
Vienna - $2.53
Vancouver - $2.42
Portland - $2.40
NYC (Subway) - $2.16
Seattle - $2.16
Perth - $2.03
Tokyo (Japan Rail) - $1.71
Paris - $1.61
Los Angeles - $1.44
Moscow - $0.83
Hong Kong - $0.73
Shanghai - $0.61

Not surprisingly since Brisbane (and SE Queensland) have had fare rises far in excess of the CPI for the last few years, it continues to be among the world's most expensive public transport systems. For a single peak train journey, Brisbane is the third most expensive city in the world, and the most expensive in Australia! Public transport patronage will thus continue to be stunted due to excessively high prices deterring the use of Brisbane's trains, buses, and ferries. In part 2 of this blog post, BrizCommuter will look at the top 5 cities in more detail - weekly fares, daily fares, service frequency, value for money, bus fares, and refund policies.

Last year's fare comparison:
2013 World Fare Comparison - Part 2:


  1. And when you factor in the incomes of those living and working in those cities, SEQ comes off even worse. Scandanavian wages are quite high, so the fares for Oslo or Stockholm would be somewhat reasonable for locals.

  2. High fares might be ok if the services were excellent. But they are nothing like that.

  3. On top of everything the Go Card system is not capped in any way. While in Melbourne, on the Myki card you will only be charged twice on any day, in Brisbane there are limited transfers, a 1 hour clock between transfers, and a 3.5 hour clock for touching on to your last journey. Sydney is even worse!
    Just try using a go card like you might use a Myki card. You'll find you will rack up fares of $18 and upward for journey's within 2 zones. It boggles the mind!


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