STAFF REPORTER

PALMA
AN all-purpose travel card will be available on Majorca at the beginning of next year which will mean the cost of travelling by rail, metro and bus could be reduced by as much as 50 percent.

The regional Transport ministry, which said yesterday that it will be the longer journeys which benefit most from price reduction, is to develop the new tariff system and fix the price of Palma's metro ticket at 0.90 euros, the lowest anywhere in Spain.

Minister Gabriel Vicenç explained that the new measures mean dividing the Island into five main tariff zones which, he claimed, will offer a fairer deal for those living in out-of-the-way places. The travel card thus allows users to swop from one type of mode of transport to another, incorporating in the price the cost of one free ride.

Analysing the offer a little more closely, the card allows two types of integrated travel: the T-40 which is valid for 45 days and is designed for people travelling on a daily basis; and the T-20 which can be used over the course of 120 days. More specific options will be available - a one-way ticket, a return, and a “reduced” fare which will mean half-price journeys for young people under 26 years-of-age, for the retired, those over 65 and families with several children.

The priorities of the multi-purpose travel card and its discount pricing is to attract both regular and occasion travellers to the use of public transport. Such a system is intended to cover the whole Island and in places where the railway has not yet reached, the concessionary tariff will be applied to coach routes that connect outlying Majorcan towns with Palma.

In this way, the combination of two or more modes of transport - rail, coach, metro, bus - using the new travel card, will mean significant changes in the cost of journeys. As an example, the cost of a train journey between Palma and Manacor under the T-40 system will drop from 1.75 to 1.20 euros. By coach, travel will be even cheaper - a journey between Palma and Son Servera will fall from 8.65 to 4.34 euros. The system will be introduced gradually with Palma municipal buses not forming part of the agreement at first.

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