The executive board of the Helsinki Regional Transport Authority (HSL) approved on 29 October the proposed price drop for users of its long distance services.
According to HSL, the prices of ABC, BCD, CD and ABCD tickets will decrease at the beginning of 2020. Those price cuts will be applied to both single and season tickets. However, prices of AB, BC and D tickets will remain unchanged.
Map of public transport zones in Helsinki area. Source: HSL.
Simultaneously, HSL proposed an increase in the penalty fare for those who travel without a valid ticket from 80 euros 100 euros. The transport authority explained in a release that with this raise the fine "would still be reasonable compared to penalty fares in other Nordic capital regions, which range between 100 euros and 155 euros". HSL says it loses from 8 to 10 million euros in revenue every year due to fare evasion.
First significant price drop
HSL Director Executive Suvi Rihtniemi said this is the first time in the 10-year history of the regional transport authority that "such significant fare cuts" are done. "We will lower the fares for the longest journeys, as switching from driving to public transport for the longest journeys is most beneficial in terms of reducing emissions from traffic,” she added.
The biggest benefit will be to those living in zones C and D, but HSL believe that also people living in zones A and B will benefit from the lower prices. For example, residents of Helsinki buy 27% of ABC tickets and they are the third largest group of people buying ABCD tickets.
The Ministry of Transportation and Communications must still make the final decision on the proposed price changes.