Despite full trains: According to polls, most people are satisfied with the 9 euro ticket. But with the arrival of the summer holidays, another endurance test in local public transport is already on the agenda.
Summer holidays in North Rhine-Westphalia have already started and soon in other federal states. Due to the € 9 ticket, many buses and trains should be full again – often overcrowded.
“Of course, there will be tense situations on the individual regional transport routes between the large cities in North Rhine-Westphalia and towards the North Sea,” said the president of the Association of German Transport Companies (VDV) of the German Press Agency, with a view to starting the holiday season in the most populous federal state. “We encourage passengers to plan more time, be more understanding – and leave their bikes at home.”
Four weeks in use
Most passengers with a € 9 ticket should get used to this notification by now. The special ticket has been available for almost four weeks and entitles you to use local public transport throughout Germany in June, July and August. Ticket once again increased the demand on buses and trains. About 16 million tickets were sold nationwide from the start of sales to mid-June, according to VDV.
For example, the use of Berliner Verkehrsbetriebe (BVG) is now almost at pre-Corona levels, the company said a few days ago. In May, before the ticket was introduced, demand was still 20%. lower than pre-crisis levels.
But as expected, the ticket also shows bottlenecks in transport companies and the route network. Numerous construction sites across Germany are slowing down rail traffic. After all, the subsidiary DB Regio can offer 250 additional journeys per day during the ticket period. But with around 22,000 regional train journeys a day, that’s not much
“But companies can certainly not modernize anymore, as there are neither vehicles nor staff, especially in NRW,” said Karl-Peter Naumann, Honorary Chairman of the Pro Bahn Passenger Association. “We recommend to all travelers: if you want to go on vacation now, you should take long-distance transport and book your seats there.” Moreover, the demand is too high, especially on routes with a high-speed regional express connection.
Long-distance travel is still popular
In fact, long distance transport seems to be a popular option for many travelers, despite cheap regional transport deals. With a vacation in North Rhine-Westphalia in mind, VDV observes that “holidaymakers on long journeys, for example towards Bavaria or Berlin, sometimes switch to long-distance rail transport or long-distance buses, which require less changes and are faster,” said the president of the association Wortmann.
But many obviously don’t care about full trains. In a recent representative population survey by the Forsa opinion research institute commissioned by VDV, almost 90 percent of those polled said they were satisfied with a public transport ticket on their last trip. The most important motivation to buy – over 70 percent. voted for this option – so is the price. According to the study, for at least 40 percent. the main reason is the lack of a car.
But from Pro-Bahn CEO Naumann’s point of view, this could be especially the commuters who give up public transport due to the high demand for tickets. “We have a clientele that uses full trains due to the low price,” he stressed. “But we also have a different clientele, which is quite a deterrent.” After all, far fewer people are likely to be driving on the road at peak times during the summer holidays. (dpa)