Izmir raises public transport costs with Istanbul, Ankara to follow suit

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The İzmir Metropolitan Municipality on Wednesday announced an increase in public transport fees as Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (IBB) and Ankara Metropolitan Municipality (ABB) reported an increase in the public transport pass.

Izmir Metropolitan Municipality decided to increase public transport fares by 38% during the Transport Coordination Center (UKOME) meeting. In accordance with the decision taken by majority vote, with the completion of the approval process, the first boarding price for public vehicles, which is currently 4.7 TL, will be 6.50 TL from March 20.

In addition, the decision was made to increase public transport prices based on the average of the Wholesale Price Index (WPI) and the Consumer Price Index (CPI) each month. Prices for minibuses in Izmir also increased by 50% and reached 7.5 TL for minimum fares.

Meanwhile, the BWI is preparing to raise fees for its Istanbulkart, the city’s electronic public transport pass that covers all forms of public transport – from buses and metros to ferries operating between the two sides of the Bosphorus – citing soaring fuel prices.

Chambers of Public Transport Traders, General Manager of Istanbul Electricity, Tram and Tunnel (IETT) and General Manager of Istanbul Metro reportedly gathered in Istanbul’s coastal district of Yenikapı for a meeting chaired by the BWI, where they decided to increase public transport costs from 50% to 65%.

UKOME will assess BWI’s request at a meeting in the next few days and make the final decision.

The municipality had imposed e-pass fee increases, but it also increased public transit e-pass fees by 111% in one year. The BWI announced a 92% increase in fees for certain types of passes in February and now charges almost 5.50 TL for single-vehicle rides, without connecting to other public transport, like metrobuses and downtown trains. It also charges 11 TL for a single-use pass, especially popular with tourists and newcomers to the city.

Pass renewal fees for people with reduced fares, from seniors to students, were also increased by 36.2% in December 2021. increased from 20 TL to 35 TL.

BELBIM, the municipality’s company that supplies the e-passes, said in a written statement that the cost of producing the cards had increased by around TL 35, “along with the global chip crisis and foreign currency fluctuations. “.

The Ankara Metropolitan Municipality (ABB), which raised public transport fares on January 5, announced earlier in February that the cost increases had already pushed the municipality to cover a third of the cost per passenger.

Noting that if a cost increase of 182% over the past three years was reflected in ticket prices, the ABB had said that the full ticket would be 9.17 TL and the discounted ticket would be 4, 94TL today. Additionally, the ABB said the cost per passenger was 6.50 TL, while discount fares were 4.50 TL.

“We regret to express that amid ongoing cost increases, we may need to readjust our ticket prices,” the municipality said in a statement.

Since ABB’s statement, diesel prices have increased from 17 TL to 25 TL.

From tonight, an increase of 2.25 TL for diesel and 0.79 TL for gasoline is also expected. After the price hikes, the average price per liter of diesel is expected to reach almost 25.10 TL in Istanbul and 25.20 TL in Ankara and Izmir, while it was around 12 TL in December 2021. The price of normal gasoline is expected to reach TL 21.10 in Istanbul, 22.20 TL in Ankara and 22.30 TL in Izmir per litre.

Amid a global energy price turmoil following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and related sanctions affecting oil and gas supplies, Wednesday’s increase marks a rise in fuel prices in Turkey during seven consecutive days. Due to its energy dependence and exchange rate volatility, Turkey is even more affected by world prices.

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