Monday, October 26, 2009

Having a moan about Dunedin's bus service

Those of you who follow my blog know I have just got back from working in Australia for nine months and now have a two month contract as education programmer and facilitator at Otago Polytechnic, which is eight minutes car drive from my house.

In an effect to reduce my carbon footprint, I've decided to use the bus to get to and from work. I am very lucky...there is a bus stop right outside my house. So I can get from door step to door step, although I do have to swap buses in the center of town, and it takes 30 - 40 minutes, depending on connections. But the time isn't so much of an issue because I like to read the newspaper on the bus and watch the world go by.

What has shocked me is the price of the bus fare. A return journey is $9 ... and that includes a discount! So even allowing $5 for parking, it is cheaper to drive to work. Apparently, what stuffs me up is the fact I have to catch two buses so I get charged two bus fares, instead of being charged one amount for the whole journey.

Not a great incentive to stop driving my car! And goodness knows how people on social benefit etc can afford $45 per week it's going to cost me on bus fares.

PS: In Brisbane, my bus journey to work cost me $6 return (which was about an hour long and took two buses) and in Darwin cost $4 return (40 minutes long).


Merrolee said...

and they wonder why we don't catch buses in Dunedin! I have resorted to biking - 13 mins if all the conditions are right - ie not too windy, able to cross major intersections immediately etc. However, biking is not well encouraged - we bikers share the same path as walkers - no clear pattern - so walkers sometimes on the left, sometimes on the right but mostly smack bang in the middle of the route and what they don't realise is I'm coming along with a tail wind sometimes at 30km an hour - accident just waiting to happen! Also, many people crossing the overbridge - just walk out straight in front of bikers... we should have clearly marked lanes for bikers and walkers that people respect and adhere to... and cars should give way to bikes crossing the main routes (just as they do in biker friendly countries such as Netherlands, Germany and Austria!

Sarah Stewart said...

I'm trying to walk one way to work every day to save money & get some exercise. But I have a choice...what about the people who don't have that choice?

classyadele said...

I've been moaning about DUD's buses since the recent price hike. I am convinced that taking the bus to work in DUD is NO LONGER a cost-effective mode. It's not a 'cheaper' alternative anymore. Infact, I would dare say it's considered a luxury to take the bus to work now!

Ive got a lot to gripe about. Firstly, the buses are infrequent (it's a 30-45 min wait in btwn buses, even during peak hours). I sometimes wonder what sort of brains were placed in charge of scheduling the arrival of buses. It's nonsensical to me. Like, if you miss a bus, u've effectively missed 'all buses' that go to town, as ALL the buses arrive more or less the same time - when it would have been more logical to 'space-out' the arrival of buses that passes by a bus stop in ur area. U know what I mean? So that if u miss ur bus, u still have the option of taking the next bus, which is prolly 5-10 mins away. But no, all the buses arrive within a time span of 5 mins, and if u miss the last one, u'd have to wait for the next one in 30-45 mins!

Like you, I have to catch 2 buses to reach the Commerce building. But I usually take 1 bus (can't be bothered waiting for the 2nd bus), but will have to do a bit of walking (which I dont mind - depending on time, eg. meetings to attend, etc.).

It now costs me nearly $6 for a return journey per day. That's $30 a week, effectively $120 a month! Driving is certainly cheaper - albeit the hassle of getting a carpark. If u park at Logan Park, a bit of walking is needed, but at least it's convenient to have a car. Unlike buses, the last bus that leaves the Commerce Building (which is near the Polytech) leaves at 6.50pm, which is too early for me.

Sarah Stewart said...

It's crazy...what can we do about it?