This country to have free public transport for all

07 December, 2018, 17:59 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • A file image of congested traffic in Sydney

As of this summer, anyone under the age of 20 can travel free in Luxembourg, while an annual "mPass" for commuters.

Around 200,000 others cross the border to Germany, France and Belgium daily.

Soon, all public transport in Luxembourg will be free as fares for trains, trams, and buses are lifted next summer.

The abolition of all fares on trains, trams and buses was a policy proposed by the country's ruling coalition government led by Prime Minister Xavier Bettel, who was sworn in for a second term Wednesday.

Other than their transport promise, Bettel's new coalition government says it is also considering the legalization of cannabis and the introduction of two new public holidays, including "Europe Day" on May 9.

Luxembourg is home to slightly over 500,000 people with an area of 2, 586 square kilometers. Though only 100,000 people live there, an additional 400,000 commute into the city for work.

It's hoped that by 2020, all tickets for public transportation will be abolished, leaving no need for fare collection and policing of ticket purchases and a significant reduction in traffic congestion.

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Commuters need only pay €2 (US$2.20) for up to two hours of travel, which in a country of just 2,590 square kilometres covers nearly all journeys.

A free shuttle service is provided for secondary school students between their homes and school and earlier this year free transport was introduced for under 20s.

Bettel only just scraped back into government in the recent election.

Part of the cost of eliminating public transport fares will be covered by removing a tax break for commuters.

Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel promised to prioritise the environment.

His Democratic Party will form a government with the left-wing Socialist Workers' party and the Greens.

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