26 September 2023

Post-COVID passengers coming back on board

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Transport provider, Transperth has reported that patronage on its systems during February was the highest monthly total for three years, with boardings on its buses, trains and ferries reaching 11.1 million.

In a statement, Transperth said this was the best patronage number since the 12.2 million who were recorded in February 2020, just before COVID-19 slashed public transport use around the globe.

“The introduction of the two-zone fare cap on 1 January last year underpinned the patronage rise, with longer journeys, especially between Perth and Mandurah, enjoying better-than-average increases,” Transperth said.

“Transperth’s patronage was well on track for an annual increase in early 2020, before the impact of the pandemic. Patronage bottomed out at 1.9 million in April 2020 before confidence in the Government’s strong anti-COVID measures kicked in,” it said.

It said the bounce-back was aided by the new Airport Line, which opened on 10 October last year.

Minister for Transport, Rita Saffioti said Transperth’s result showed how important the public transport network was for the community.

“COVID had a significant and detrimental impact on patronage levels, but the bounce-back highlights why significant investment through our METRONET program, and giving people greater access to public transport, is so important,” Ms Saffioti said.

“With a significant number of new METRONET projects in the pipeline, like the Yanchep Rail Extension and Morley-Ellenbrook Line, I have no doubt we will continue to see patronage numbers go from strength-to-strength.”

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