Germany to introduce nationwide €49 ticket
German transport ministers agreed on a €49 monthly fee ticket for all local public transportation in Germany. However, operators warn that service may be interrupted as a result of unsolved finance concerns. As part of a package of efforts to reduce inflation, Germany made headlines this summer by substantially lowering the cost of its local public transportation to €9 monthly tickets. Bus and train usage increased as a result of the strategy, but it also led to congestion.
In place of the trial €9 ticket, the federal and 16 state transport ministers in Germany have decided to support the deployment of a national €49 local public transportation ticket. According to TV station ZDF, a comparable ticket would soon cost €49 per month.
Unresolved financial issues
Federal Transport Minister Volker Wissing stated during a news conference that “with our decision today, we are getting the biggest reform of public transport underway.” The 49-euro ticket should be available countrywide on local trains and buses. Preferably it will be implemented by the beginning of 2023. However, issues with finance must be resolved before the ticket can be implemented. States are willing to shoulder some of the estimated expenses of three billion euros, but they urge the federal government for an extra 1.5 billion euros to improve local public transportation options and as compensation for rising energy prices and pandemic relief.
The pricing offer is intended, in the opinion of the transport ministers, to encourage automobile owners to utilize public transportation. The important conclusions of the transport minister’s conference are summarized as having a significant percentage of new consumers and a strong climate effect, according to Süddeutsche Zeitung. The 49-euro ticket should only be available digitally and operate on a subscription basis. Although customers will have the option to cancel at any time.
The plan was made in response to the popularity of the 9-euro public transportation ticket, which was implemented to help offset rising gasoline prices. 52 million tickets were sold between June and August 2022 throughout the period. Environmental organizations have praised the idea but are concerned that the cost may prevent widespread adoption.