World Half Full
Luxembourg raises the free PT stakes
As we reported last December, many cities have begun introducing free public transport — the most recent, Kansas City in Missouri. Luxembourg has gone one better and become the first country in the world to introduce a free public transport system for all. From March 1, residents and tourists alike were able to ride ticket-free on all buses, trains and trams.
The world-first is all part of a government drive for Luxembourg to become a “laboratory for mobility”. The government’s reasoning behind free PT? Crucially, it wants to rid roads of cars. Luxembourg has long had a major traffic problem with lengthy rush-hour delays a lived reality of the daily commute for Luxembourgers. And no wonder, the Grand Duchy has more cars per 1,000 people than any other country in the EU.
“The introduction of free public transport is an important social measure," said Luxembourg's minister for mobility, François Bausch. "You could describe it as the social icing on the cake of the global strategy for a multimodal revolution.” He added: “We want to acknowledge all those people who have already made the choice in favour of public transport.” It’s hoped ticket-free PT will further entice car owners onto public transport and increase the number of users by 20 percent by 2025.