Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Opal card now active on all Sydney Trains lines - NSW TrainLink by the end of next week but not ETA for Concession or Students cards

Opal Card certainly has been successful in its rollout, with the new ticketing system now available and operational on all Sydney Ferry routes and all Sydney Trains suburban lines, with NSW Trainlink availability to become fully operational by the end of next week (11 April 2014). However one question yet remains to be answered - when will concession card holders and students get their own cards?

Now whilst most people might see this as a petty move, it actually isn't. For example, since October last year, the Sydney Trains, NSW TrainLink, Transport for NSW and the Transport Minister, Gladys Berijiklian announced that anyone needing to get concessional fares from the stations ticket windows after 9am, on weekends and public holidays, this caused major frustration and anger within the disability community, as this would make things a little more harder for people with disabilities.

For example, someone in a wheelchair, walker, or using walking sticks has to travel from Blacktown to Richmond or to Cambelltown cannot get a ticket from the Richmond line concourse, they need to head over to the main concourse to get their ticket, then travel all the way back to Richmond Line concourse to get on their services.

Now whilst Blacktown is only one "minor" case according to the Transport for NSW, there are similar issues at NSW TrainLink Stations such at Tuggerah, Wyong, Morisset on the Newcastle & Central Coast line, Mt Victoria on the Blue Mountains Line, Mittagong, Moss Vale, Bowral, Bundanoon on the Southern Highlands Line with Dapto, Albion Park, Dunmore, & Thirroul on the South Coast/Illawarra Line having similar issues.

Transport for All NSW has sought comment from TfNSW and the Transport Ministers office along with Cubic who run the Opal Card system on behalf of the NSW Government and we are so far still awaiting to hear or be given a reply in regards to this matter.

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