The New South Wales Government will start placing a weekly cost cap of $50 on Opal cards from Monday June 24.
The new cap is about 20 per cent lower than the current cap of $63.20 a week, and is expected to save public transport users up to $686 a year. These savings will also extend to users of the recently launched North West Metro, saving $563 a year for an adult customer travelling to and from Tallawong station and Central five days a week.
Examples of regular weekly commuters who could save $686 a year under the new plans include those travelling from Meadowban to Barangaroo via ferry, Tuggerah to Central and Kiama to Sutherland routes.
State premier Gladys Berejiklian said that the new cap would help to ease cost pressures for around 55,000 customers across NSW public transport services (including ferries).
Caps for concession holders will also be reduced as part of the plans. Opal card benefits such as weekly travel rewards and transfer discounts will also survive the new cap.
“We want to make public transport more affordable and that is why we are lowering the cap,” Ms Berejiklian said. “From Monday adults will pay no more than $50 a week and the concession cap will also be reduced from $31.60 to $25 a week.”
State transport minister Andrew Constance added that from Monday fares would rise in line with inflation at 1.9 per cent as opposed to the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) recommendation of 4.2 per cent.
“This means catching the train, bus, ferry, metro or light rail is still a much cheaper option than driving,” he said.