View Full Version : Free Bus and Tain For More Services in Bangkok

Kanok Karn
16th August 2011, 11:29
The Ministry of Transport will decide again whether the free services on public buses and economy-class trains, which have been adopted for a few years to help low-income earners, will be continued or not.

Bangkok Mass Transit Authority (BMTA) Director Opart Petchmunee stated that the decision to continue the free bus and train services will depend on the new government while the BMTA is ready to comply with the policy.

Mr Opart elaborated that over 900,000 passengers are using free buses daily on average or 30 million per month. The BMTA is receiving about 190 million baht each month in compensation for the free bus scheme, and the budget disbursement from the Ministry of Finance has so far been smooth, the director said.

Meanwhile, State Railway of Thailand (SRT) Governor Yutthana Thapcharoen echoed the viewpoint of the BMTA, saying the SRT also has no problem if the policy will be continued or not.

The governor elaborated that there are about 28-30 million passengers using free train service each year while the compensation is about 62-82 million baht per month. He believed that the number of train passengers will drop if the free train service is cancelled.

Mr Yutthana noted that he personally wanted the free train service to continue because a train fare of over 100 baht for a provincial trip means a lot for low-income earners; therefore, this policy is very important for them.

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