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Opal fares increase by an average of 3 per cent

NSW commuters are now paying more when they tap on with their Opal card after an average price hike of 3 per cent came into effect for all fares on Monday.

The increase is double last year’s average price rise of 1.5 per cent, though Transport for NSW said the 3 per cent rise was “below inflation to help ease cost of living pressures”.

Examples of the changes include the cost of a train trip from Hurstville in southwestern Sydney to Town Hall going from $4.55 to $4.71 for peak fare, while taking a peak metro service from Rouse Hill in northwestern Sydney to Chatswood has gone from $5.23 to $5.42.

Opal cards force ticket booths to close
Camera IconOpal fares have increased by an average of three per cent. Credit: News Corp Australia

A ticket for the Manly ferry has also gone from $7.76 to $8.04.

The 3 per cent increase is below the 5 per cent rise recommended by the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal last year, while it is also less than the 4.4 per cent increase in the Sydney consumer price index.

But despite the increases, some services have remained untouched.

The $50 weekly cap for adults, the $25 weekly cap for youth and concession holders and the $2.50 daily cap for gold senior/pensioner Opal customers have not been changed.

The $2 transfer discount ($1 for concession) when transferring from one form of public transport to another within one hour is also still in place, while the fares for bus and light rail journeys up to 3km have not been changed.

Transport for NSW chief operations officer Howard Collins said the price hike was kept “to a minimum” to make sure their services were still affordable.

Camera IconTransport for NSW chief operations Officer Howard Collins the price hike was kept ‘to a minimum’. NCA NewsWire / Gaye Gerard Credit: News Corp Australia

“Opal fare adjustments for the next 12 months have been kept to a minimum and for the vast majority of our customers these fare changes will mean an increase of less than $1 a week,” he said.

“Any impact on heavy public transport users and pensioners will be further alleviated by the Opal weekly cap and the gold senior/pensioner Opal daily cap, which will be maintained at current prices.

“We want our customers to continue to access affordable and convenient public transport across light rail, metro, trains, ferries and buses.”

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