Tips and rumours

Aug 20, 2014

Tips and rumours

Government appointments in the family ... NSW Police wins the Fail Award ... Vic Young Labor plays the Hunger Games


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5 thoughts on “Tips and rumours

  1. leon knight

    Love the “Dolebludger”app, what a corker of an idea….let’s hope it goes viral quickly..!!

  2. zut alors

    As Tasmania has such high unemployment amongst the young Erica Betz will be flush with non-existing-job aoplicants.

  3. Prefix

    I have to take issue with ‘It seems impossible to implement a new ticketing system in an Australian capital city without stuffing it up and confusing everyone’. Perth’s SmartRider system (props to Alannah McTiernan) has been more or less trouble-free since it was implemented. As it was installed years before Myki, it’s hard to understand how Melbourne stuffed it up so much.

  4. Scott Grant

    I am guessing, but I think part of the reason Perth’s system worked reasonably well (so I am told) was that Perth already had a simplified system of fares. If my memory is correct, the same company that implemented the Perth system was contracted to do NSW by the NSW Labor government. They failed and ended up in a court battle with the government. Possibly a much larger population and transport network had something to do with it, but I believe one of the major factors was the attempt to automate an existing, arcane, ticketing system, without any modification.

    As for the Opal card, I am finding it does work acceptably. I had a lot of trouble training myself to “tag off”, but I have done so now.

    Despite the official line, there ARE machines that sometimes failed to register properly. And customers ARE overcharged. This happens because, if the tag-on and tag-off are not correctly registered, you not only get charged the maximum amount, but it is not counted as a “journey” for the purpose of the so-called “travel reward”. That, to me, is an outright rip-off.

    I can accept paying a maximum if I forget to tag off. I am slightly more annoyed about it when I do tag off and I find out several days later that the machine failed to register it. BUt after paying more than double for my trip I am ropable when I find it is not counted as a journey, and at the end of the week I am not getting the free trips I expect. That means a no-tag-off costs more than 3 times the normal fare.

    However, I have noticed that some machines I have had trouble with in the past, now seem to work without a problem. Maybe they have fixed some software glitches.

  5. My Comment

    There are more serious problems with the Opal system.

    (1) The biggest problem is probably that Opal does not properly integrate different modes of transport. It is cheaper and more efficient for the government to run a train carrying lots of passengers than buses each carrying relatively few passengers, so ideally Opal would encourage passengers to move from buses to trains. Assuming that timetables match, this would also give the passenger a faster journey.

    But Opal encourages the opposite.

    It is more expensive for a passenger to catch a bus to the train station then transfer to a train for the remainder of the journey than to remain on the bus for the full trip.

    (2) The fares are more expensive for many people on Opal, despite the Government’s continued statements and advertising. For example, for some people buying off-peak return train tickets, the weekly cost will go up by 12% from 1 September.

    (3) Opal is more expensive and complicated for families. Separate cards are required for each child. Upfront payments are required for each card, even if it will take years to use them up. The Family Fare deal (only pay for the first child) is not available on Opal making fares even more expensive for larger families.

    (4) Privacy: as has been covered elsewhere.

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