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Metra Hikes Fares, Heads off Ticket Hoarding


It's "hoarding" when you try to protect yourself against price increases.


Metra wants to prevent commuters from buying reams of 10-ride tickets at the existing lower fares

Metra officials on Friday [11/11/11] approved a 25 percent fare increase that would start in February.

The biggest jump in nearly four years is meant to offset an anticipated $53.6 million budget deficit in 2012. Metra officials believe the hikes are better than cutting services, and riders seem to agree according to an online survey.

Board member Arlene Mulder said riders overwhelmingly told her they didn't want to see service cuts and that fare hikes would be more palatable if the trains were equipped with wi-fi.

Under the plan, one-way tickets would go up an average of 15.7 percent, 10-ride tickets an average of 30 percent and monthly passes 29.4 percent.

In anticipation of the board's approval, Metra proposed steps to prevent commuters from buying reams of 10-ride tickets at the existing lower fares.

Traditionally, 10-ride tickets were good for one year. But signage is proposed for Metra stations, warning riders that effective Saturday through January 31, 10-rides will expire next Feb. 29, 2012.

Metra says when fares were last raised in 2008, they saw a sudden, 67 percent increase in 10-ride sales. The agency estimates the ticket-hoarders cost them as much as $2.7 million in lost revenue.

Money that remains in the citizen/consumer's pocket is "lost revenue". Angry

Entry #659


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