Living in Greece

A practical guide to moving, living, working & traveling in Greece, plus musing and misadventures from an American in Athens

Public transport tickets to rise on January 1

The Greek transport ministry decided that the price of a single ticket for the metro, elektrikos, bus/trolley and tram will be raised from €0.80 to €1.00 starting January 1, 2009.

Like the 0.80 euro single ticket, it entitles the passenger to a one-way ride of up to 90 minutes from the time of validation, using all modes.

For those keeping track, ticket prices were last increased on May 1, 2008. It was explained that the rising cost of gas/petrol was to blame. Gas prices have plummeted since then, but everyday expenses continue to go up.

The good news is the price of daily, weekly and monthly passes on qualifying unlimited routes remain the same, and the price of an annual card will go down. It’s meant to be an incentive to leave cars at home to reduce traffic and pollution, and reward those who use public transportation on a regular basis.

* There will be a transitional grace period for ticket holders to use old tickets, and more information will be posted as it comes available or changes.

Amount of Increase since January 1, 2008

Mode May 2008 Jan 2009
Bus/trolley 50% 100%
Tram 33% 66%
Elektrikos 15% 43%
Metro 0% 25%

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Greece vs. USA price comparison 2008

9 Comments »

  FMS wrote @ December 31st, 2008 at 06:28

And, of course, inflation is still very low (according to ND) and the Greek economy is in a wonderful condition. A doubling of bus fares in one year shows the true intent of the current regime, which is to push the financial burdens of Greece onto the poor while the rich steal ever more money. Just shameless behaviour…

Why are young people rioting and looting our cities? If they have no bread, let them eat cake! (Marie-Antoinette Karamanlis and King “Canute” Papandreou).

  Demitris wrote @ January 2nd, 2009 at 19:51

Simply inexcusable. In fact government should have been working at decreasing those fees by at least 30%. This is daylight robbery and everyone can see it. Aren’t citizens encouraged to make more use of public transport to lower congestion & pollution, these increases won’t help the situation one bit.

  Bel Ludovic wrote @ January 3rd, 2009 at 00:13

Before you complain too much, remember that a one-way Underground (metro) ticket between two destinations in central London can cost as much as €4… I know Londoners earn more, but it’s mainly non-London-residents who end up paying those prices rather than regular London commuters.

And London public transport prices rise EVERY year, on January 2, without exception; prices never fall. The rises are sometimes quite steep, too.

Compared to the rest of Europe (at least what I’ve experienced of it, on my travels), Athens’s public transport has always struck me as representing fair value, being both a) quite good and b) quite cheap.

  FMS wrote @ January 3rd, 2009 at 13:46

Bel: several comments. First, the UK is an international disaster zone for public transport, so almost anywhere in the world is better. Secondly, Athens buses are unreliable, frequently do not go to where you want, with no place to put shopping bags, and usually crowded with too many passengers. They used to be cheap, at least. Thirdly, the Athens metro when it started was reliable and not such bad value for money: now, they close it for early for holidays, go on strike, etc etc. Fourthly, the taxis are a nightmare for both Greeks and foreigners: the price has nothing to do with it, it is the failure of the state to control crooks that is the problem.

Overall, there is no justification for raising the costs of public utilities when the population cannot afford it. The rich should pay more taxes, the corrupt should be imprisoned with the assets confiscated, and the politicians should be held accountable for their terrible performance. It is not acceptable for the government to make the poor pay for the Greek budget deficit, when it is the corruption of politicians and their friends which has caused it.

  The Scorpion wrote @ January 4th, 2009 at 11:06

FMS, if you have a complaint about taxis, I found this great, new number you can report them anonymously: It’s tel # 1019. You just tell them the details and the taxi’s license number and they do the rest.

  Marina wrote @ January 5th, 2009 at 12:52

I disagree with FMS and I agree with Bel Ludovic.
I live in Athens and I don’t own a car. I mostly use the bus, and I always buy the monthly ticket. Now we also have tickets for a whole day, and for 5 people with one ticket.
The main difference from the transportation abroad is that ours mostly belongs to the state, and that’s why it’s relatively cheap. That’s why we have strikes.
Also another problem is that many people still don’t validate their tickets.
Buses are packed full mainly because we are always too late at the station, when we see the bus no matter how full we still get in, because we are late for work (I am doing it also because I know that in the next stop someone instead of me will miraculously be able to squeeze in), and sometimes the buses are late or are disappearing because there is a demonstration downtown and all the roads are closed.
I don’t think it has to do with taxes, I think in this case, and maybe only in this case they are trying to catch up their loses.
I really-really hope that this will help the longevity of the transportations so that no firings or cut downs or privatisation should occur.

  Val wrote @ January 5th, 2009 at 13:58

Just found your interesting site and thought of poor husband off to work today after the Xmas break with his exact change for the metro counted out -80 cents each way- (well pinched from my purse) Hope he can beg the fare off one of his colleagues to get home!

  KT wrote @ January 5th, 2009 at 23:47

FMS, poly wraia ta les!!

  FMS wrote @ January 10th, 2009 at 00:01

Thanks, KT: it’s nice to get some agreement for once!

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