SRT board considering substantial off-peak fare cut on airport rail link from October to end of December
The SRT Electric Train Company, the operator of the airport rail link service, will propose that the SRT board reduce fares by about 44%, during off-peak hours, from October until end of December, to ease the burden on commuters.
Suthep Panpeng, Managing Director of the SRT Electric Train Company, said today that the COVID-19 pandemic has seriously hampered train operations, with the anticipation that the number of commuters for the whole of 2020 will have fallen by about 40%, from 35 to 24 million.
During the height of the virus outbreak, he said that the number of daily commuters fell from an average of 90,000-100,000 to just 10,000 per day, but the number has recovered to about 57,000 since the Government eased lockdown restrictions.
He attributed the sharp drop in journeys to the disappearance of foreign tourists, as a result of the Government’s policy to close the country to foreign tourist arrivals.
Fare cuts during off-peak hours were introduced between March 30th and June 30th this year.
Suthep said that the current fares are between 15-45 baht, depending on the distance, and have not been increased since the launch of the service, despite the fact that, in normal practice, the fares should be adjusted every five years.
Operations of the airport rail link service will, next year, be transferred to the High-Speed Train Company, which was awarded the contract to build and operate the high-speed train project linking Suvarnabhumi, Don Mueang and U-tapao international airports.