Golden Ticket: Free travel, bikes on peak hour trains for CBD commuters

Minister for Transport and Main Roads The Honourable Mark Bailey

Golden Ticket: Free travel, bikes on peak hour trains for CBD commuters

Commuters can win free travel for a year as part of a Palaszczuk Government initiative to encourage more workers to return to South-East Queensland’s city centres.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said a Golden Go Card would be given to a lucky traveller who had used public transport on a Friday across the month of June.

“The randomly selected draw at the end of the working week is open for all registered Go Card users,” Mr Bailey said.

“The Gold Card promotion is just part of a wider push to get more workers back into the CBD and supporting small businesses in SEQ city centres at the tail end of the week.

“Thanks to Queensland’s strong response to the pandemic, patronage on public transport is sitting at around 70% of pre-COVID levels, much better than New South Wales and Victoria.

“We’re continuing to deliver Queensland’s plan for economic recovery and offices and workplaces are filling up again.

“Now, four lucky commuters will get a golden opportunity to enjoy free trips on trams, trains, buses and ferries for a whole year.

“This is about encouraging more Queenslanders to support retailers and hospitality workers as we continue the state’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Mr Bailey said the Golden Go Card lottery comes just ahead of the restrictions around taking bikes and e-scooters on peak hour trains being relaxed from July 1 in a six-month trial.

New smart ticketing readers have been installed at 10 SEQ train stations and will be operating from this week as part of the next phase of the $371 million roll-out of this technology.

“We want to do all we can to encourage more travellers onto public transport and coming into our city centres,” Mr Bailey said.

“The moves are a key part of the Palaszczuk Government’s plan to continue driving Queensland’s economic recovery.

“Queensland’s public transport system is currently undergoing an historic transformation.

“Cross River Rail, the next stage of Gold Coast Light Rail and the smart ticketing rollout, will motivate more and more people to get out and explore the south east.”

Bicycle Queensland CEO Rebecca Randazzo said the six-month trial of allowing bicycles and e-scooters on peak trains was a win for cyclists and scooter users.

“Every time someone uses the combination of bike and train to get around SEQ, that’s one less car on the roads,” Ms Randazzo said.

“And combining public transport and bike riding helps you find your 30 minutes of physical activity for the day, while reducing carbon emissions.”

These travel incentives come as TransLink continues installing and testing its new Smart Ticketing system at 10 SEQ train stations.

New device readers have been installed at: Gympie North, Eumundi, Woombye, Beerwah, Glasshouse Mountains, Murrumba Downs, Petrie, Strathpine, Northgate and Albion train stations and will be activated for go card use from Tuesday 1 June.

Technicians will progressively install another 550 readers across 154 stations which feature larger, brighter screens and hoods so they are easier to see and hear.

“Smart Ticketing is about giving people more choice and freedom in how they pay for public transport,” Mr Bailey said.

“Testing the system on our train network is the next step in the rollout by the end of 2022 after trialling the technology successfully on Gold Coast trams in December.

“Once all new platform readers and gates are installed and fully functional for go card use, we will start testing new payment methods for train passengers including credit cards, mobile phones and smart watches and devices.”

“Our Smart Ticketing system will service one of the largest geographical areas of any ticketing system in the world and will be designed to adapt to future growth and new technology.

Anyone with a registered go card who travels on the TransLink SEQ network with their go card on a Friday in June and fills in the entry form on the TransLink website is eligible to win a golden go card.

The golden go cards are non-transferrable and will cover the entire SEQ TransLink network.

Winners will be randomly drawn and announced each Monday in June with free travel for a year between 1 July 2021 – 30 June 2022.

Background:

TransLink’s COVID-Safe Public Transport Plan explains how we are keeping passengers safe and the Service Capacity Tracker can help commuters see how much space is available on services.

For more ways to save money with your go card, including a 20 per cent off peak discount when you travel between 8.30am and 3.30pm and after 7pm, as well as half-price concession rates, visit here.

Registering your go card is easy and protects the money on your card if it is lost or stolen. It also allows you to check your card balance, travel history and set up auto top-up online so you don’t have to add money to at a ticketing machine or station.

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