Re: Canberra Tram Patronage.

Canberra light rail passenger numbers down in first week

- [image: Andrew Brown]

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The first week of paid tram travel saw almost 30,000 fewer boardings than
the weekly average during the first month of free services.

Transport Canberra points to the Reconciliation Day public holiday
impacting figures in the first week of full fares, and the "three coldest
days of the year".
[image: There were fewer passengers on the Canberra light rail in its first
paid week. Picture: Sitthixay Ditthavong]

There were fewer passengers on the Canberra light rail in its first paid
week. Picture: Sitthixay Ditthavong

In the first week of paid services between May 27 and June 2, there were
77,668 boardings across the week excluding the public holiday Monday,
compared to the average of 106,279 boardings in a week in the free trial.

Figures show an average of 14,876 boardings on the light rail a day in the
first paid week, after a month-long free trial.

However, it represents a drop of almost 2500 passengers, from the average
of 17,297 boardings in the four-week free period.

Despite the drop, a spokesman for Transport Canberra said more data was
needed to determine trends on the light rail network and it was too early
to determine if passengers were declining.

"Historically, we see reduced patronage across the network due to poor
weather and holidays," the spokesman said.

"The week of May 27 to June 2, we experienced three of the coldest days of
the year and Monday was a public holiday."

More services had been added to the light rail network during the four-week
free period due to increased passenger demand.

One extra service was added to the morning peak while three more were added
to the afternoon peak.

The Transport Canberra spokesman said the number of services running since
the introduction of paid fares had not changed.

"Service and capacity levels are continually monitored and any increase to
service levels will be made as the need is identified," the spokesman said.

Overall, Transport Canberra says boardings had been better than
anticipated, already topping numbers expected in two years time.

"Transport Canberra is very pleased light rail is so popular. We're already
hitting our 2021 business case passenger numbers."

While passenger numbers on the light rail may have been down in first week,
Transport Canberra has said there was an increase in people using public
transport in Canberra across the whole network compared with the same time
last year.

Overall, more people are using buses and trams put together than used the
buses this time last year.

Passenger journeys have increased 9 per cent this year compared with the
same point in 2018, while boardings are up 13 per cent.

"Journeys across the entire new network are up 12 per cent," the spokesman

"Transport Canberra expects that patronage will continue to increase week
on week from previous years."