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Navigo à prix unique? Not for now.

One of the things I aim to focus on in 2013 is to work on improving my French. To that end, not only will I try to revise my knowledge of grammatical aspect of the language, I need to correct the way I speak (sounding “cute” just doesn’t cut it) and to also read more in French. In particular, I should be reading more newspaper/news article online.

For good reasons too, since I’ve somehow along the way missed the memo on changes to the use of public transport system in the last few weeks.

Metro station at Chatelet

You may recall I wrote last year on dézonage of Navigo at weekends and on public holidays, and based on information available then, New Year’s Day should see a new implementation where there is a fixed-price for Navigo for all zones. The price for Navigo zones 1-2 should see a small increase but otherwise it should be beneficial for all.

Well, that’s not happening anymore.

Not for now anyway.

The authority to be has decided to shelf this initiative for the time being, citing high cost of implementation as the reason behind this change. The fact that this deal was also brokered involving political figures before the election, and now the financing of the programme is being disputed, it means securing a State backing and perhaps integration into the Finance Bill would be required before the complete dézonage can be rolled out.

On the other hand, a different change in the form of “complément de parcours” will take place on 1 January. That is to say, a Navigo holder would not have to buy full price tickets to travel beyond the zones already paid on his/her pass, but to pay the price difference between the cost covered by the pass and the final destination. E.g. a passenger with pass for zones 1-2 wishes to go to Versailles which is in zone 4; under this sytem, he/she needs not buy a separate full-priced ticket for zones 1-4 but will pay only for zones 3-4, thus complementing the pass with the supplementary cost.

I have not tested this out myself but how it works is as follows: at the train station, use the ticket machine to pay for the supplementary ticket and it would be recharged into the Navigo. Mind, the supplementary ticket is only valid for 3 hours so use it or lose it. A bit cumbersome if you’re hoping to be able to buy, say, return tickets in advance for a day trip somewhere beyond one’s normal Navigo zones. No such thing as queueing just once for both your supplementary tickets if you intend to be away for more than 2-3 hours.

On that note, I am pondering – did no one think of allowing Navigo users to use their passes on a top-up basis? In another word, instead of having to buy supplementary ticket ahead of each journey, why not let passengers recharge a certain amount of money to the card, and to have relevant supplementary costs deducted automatically from this fund? Perhaps the cost to replace card readers at turnstiles that incorporate such deduction calculation is too prohibitive…

Broken dézonage promise notwithstanding, the prices for most tickets to access public transport are being increased. The carnet of normal t+ tickets is up from €12.70 to €13.30, an increase of 4.7%, while Navigo zones 1-2 is €2.20 more expensive, an increase of 3.5%. Accordingly, the price hike should go in some way to raise finances needed to cover the shortfall due to the current weekend/public holiday dézonage programme as well as paying for investment in improved infrastructure.

Category: Paris

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2 scribbles & notes

  1. med says:

    wow…somehow sounds like the KL trains ticketing is much more convenient, cheaper and simpler hehehe ;) cant say the same on the reliability though

    • Lil says:

      i have no idea how ticketing in KL works, but honestly it’s reasonably priced to use the public transport here (i doubt you get a monthly unlimited bus + train + tram use in KL for some 65 quids) – and they are normally very efficient and reliable, until there’s a work strike going on :p

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