In the wake of a significant overnight surge in petrol prices, commuters in Pakistan are bracing themselves for higher travel costs as the All Pakistan Public Transport Owners Federation announced fare hikes ranging from Rs100 to Rs150.
Asmatullah Niazi, Chairman of the Federation, expressed his concerns over the detrimental impact of the relentless rise in petroleum product prices on their business. This upward trend in petrol costs is not only affecting the general public but also the public transport sector.
Niazi emphasized that a notification detailing the revised fare structure has been prepared and will come into effect starting tomorrow, following thorough consultations with transport stakeholders.
The proposed fare adjustments will see public transport costs to various cities increased by Rs150. This move is seen as a response to the dire financial pressures imposed by the incessant escalation in petrol prices.
The Federation Chairman made an assertion that, in the past, they refrained from increasing fares despite hikes in petroleum prices. However, the current situation has forced their hand in making this difficult decision.
Currently, the fare for a journey from Lahore to Rawalpindi stands at Rs2,550. This fare is set to be raised to Rs2,650 in light of the impending fare adjustments. Similarly, the journey from Lahore to Peshawar, currently priced at Rs3,200, will cost commuters Rs3,350 following the revision. Moreover, the Lahore-to-Faisalabad route, currently priced at Rs1,180, will soon be pegged at Rs1,300.
For those traveling from Lahore to Sargodha, the fare, which currently sits at Rs1,250, will be adjusted to Rs1,375. Likewise, commuters traversing the Lahore-to-Bahawalpur route, currently paying Rs2,500, will find themselves paying Rs2,650 post-fare revision.
The transport industry’s decision to revise fares can be attributed to the soaring petrol prices, which have had a cascading effect on their operational costs. While the Federation acknowledges the potential burden on commuters, they emphasize that these fare adjustments are necessary to ensure the sustainability of public transport services.
As the new fare structure comes into play, both transport operators and passengers will need to adapt to the changing landscape of travel expenses. As the economy grapples with the impact of rising petrol prices, finding a balance between maintaining affordable transport options and ensuring the viability of the public transport sector remains a challenge that requires careful consideration and collaboration between all stakeholders involved.