Passengers who heeded the call to switch to cashless bus fares in Brighton and Hove are set to be hit by an above-inflation price hike.
Brighton and Hove Buses have been encouraging people to use keycards and smartphone mtickets by offering smaller fares than those available from the driver.
But while cash fares will be frozen, those who switched will be hit by a range of price increases – although the fares will still be less than cash ones.
Andrew Boag, chair of Brighton Area Buswatch, said: “The decision by Brighton and Hove Buses to freeze cash fares is welcome.
“However we are concerned that passengers who have been encouraged to switch to Key Cards and M tickets to get the best deals will lose out.
“It is important to discourage passengers from paying on bus because it slows the service down for everyone.
“This is particularly evident in North Street and at Churchill Square where buses can take several minutes to load.”
However, Brighton and Hove Buses managing director Martin Harris said the company was still keen for people to use cashless fares.
He said: “The scale of discounts still offered by keycards and mtickets is substantial and we are still encouraging people to switch from paying on the bus to paying off bus.
“We have frozen family, student and child ticket prices including all the key and mticket versions.”
Examples of fare rises:
One day keycard or mticket rises 2.4% from £4.10 to £4.20. Cash fare frozen at £4.70
Seven day keycard or mticket rises 5% from £18 to £19
Annual ticket on keycard rises 5.8% from £510 to £540
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