On board

Bajans back planned PSV fare hike for students

The travelling public is throwing its support behind a plan by privately run public service vehicle (PSV) owners to increase the fare for school children in uniform from $1.50 to $2, bringing them in line with everyone else.

Having failed to get Government to grant duty-free concessions on new vehicles and spare parts amid what it said was escalating costs, the Alliance Owners of Public Transport (AOPT) said as of April 1 students travelling on board the PSVs would have to pay the full fare to help defray some of those costs.

It is a decision that has gone down well with Tyrone Moore who was at the Princess Alice bus terminal when Barbados TODAY stopped by today.

Tyrone Moore

According to Moore, the students have an option to travel at no cost on the state run Transport Board buses, but choose the privately run PSVs instead where discipline is not as rigid and their preferred forms of entertainment are easily available.

Therefore, he said, they should be charged more than triple what they currently pay for this privilege.   

“The school children have a mentality nowadays, they could ride on the Transport Board buses free but they decide to let the buses miss them for the vans. I believe they should charge them $5, not only $2, because what they do is foolishness. I would make them pay $5 simply because the Transport Board bus is free,” Moore said, while speculating that whatever the fare the students would continue to travel on the ZRs and minibuses.

“If bus fare raise to $2 for them, they will still catch the minibuses and ZRs. It will make no difference because they like the music, which they will not get on a normal bus. On the Government bus they have to be dressed appropriately but on the vans they can do what they feel like. Everybody can’t afford to pay $2 but the way that things are now I really don’t know.”

Like Moore, Latonya Belgrave said she was behind the AOPT all the way, although she was concerned about the possible impact of the increase on parents who have more than one child.

Latonya Belgrave

Belgrave readily admitted that she, too, had preferred the ZRs and minibuses when she was a student, for the very reason that today’s students do.

However, she said now that she is an adult she has a different perspective on the issue.

“I really don’t mind if the children pay $1.50 right now or even the $2. Yes, they could pay $2 but my thing is the parents who have a lot of children. The children should have a bus ticket to get on the bus free and that would be a good idea.

“As a school child I would take the van because it was popular and I would go with my peers, but now I have grown I realize what I was doing is total foolishness. Why not choose the free bus fare? When I was going to school I had to pay $1 and now it is free, they should take that advantage. But yes, the PSV operators should raise the fare,” she told Barbados TODAY.

Meanwhile, Kweku Jelani tried putting himself in the PSV owners’ shoes, arguing that with the cost of doing business continuing to rise, it was “only obvious that the van men will want to up their price”.

Kweku Jelani

“Everyone must eat,” Jelani said. “You can’t say it is not fair because the school children will have to pay more money, but at the same time it isn’t fair to the PSV operators.”

He also contended that students would continue to catch the minivans no matter the cost.

“It was so when I was growing up and it will be so forever,” Jelani said.

However, not everyone was onboard with the planned fare rise, with one woman who asked that her name not be published telling Barbados TODAY that in the current economic state, it would be unfair of PSV operators to ask students to pay as much as adults to travel on their vehicles.

“If we adults are paying $2, how can a child be paying the same amount? That can’t be fair. I really don’t like that move because people that have more than one child it will affect them a lot. People hardly have jobs right now to begin with so I am really not in agreement with it.

“All children are not the same and financially it will affect a lot of people  . . . the 50 cent raise is a lot in this day,” she said.

After a recent Parliamentary vote of $5 million to bail out the cash-strapped state-run Transport Board, the AOPT had called on Government to come to the rescue of the private arm of the transport industry, with the association’s president, Roy Raphael, cautioning that without duty-free concessions to quickly replenish their aging fleets, the PSV operators could soon suffer the same chronic bus shortages currently plaguing the state bus company.

14 Responses to On board

  1. Saga Boy March 13, 2018 at 11:44 pm

    I hope they are disciplined enough to make this work for the good of the country.

  2. straight talk March 14, 2018 at 4:47 am

    They should be made t pay the $2.00 from the time travelling free on the transport board buses were introduce .

  3. straight talk March 14, 2018 at 4:59 am

    Joy riding and nasty music pounding in they heads everyday is what them like, then going school disrespecting teachers and ready to kill each other and in learning nothing.

    • Lester March 14, 2018 at 5:53 am

      Blame dah parents children running things bout hey igrant parents produce igrant children

  4. Everick March 14, 2018 at 6:36 am

    Lester, you are so right.

  5. Cecil Brooks March 14, 2018 at 1:56 pm

    Who in B’DOS will really profit from this, we the public have be blindsided once again. If you tell me school children are destructive and cost you to spend more money on repairs, pray tell me why would you want them on your vans. I know for sure this is not the reason for the increase bus fares on school children. We in B’DOS need to open our eyes, and ask some questions, who stands to benefit from this action the most? Our government (BLP and DLP) has destroyed the Transport Board, Now we have no Transport Board Service in key high volume areas example The pine, Bush hall, Haynesville etc. These areas have lots of school children who need transportation and unlike the long haul routes (low volume) where children can take the Transport Board bus for free, the children in the high volume areas have no option but to catch Zr’s and Mini Buses and this government is hell bent on never having the Transport Board return to these areas. I am amaze that the government discontinue bus services on routes that are the most lucrative, money that can help the cash strap Transport Board. Iam also sure that as Clifton Hall is in St John, if a public investigation was to be done on the owners of the Zr’s and Mini buses that are on these routes, we would really understand the mountain of corruption in this country of Barbados. I am still waiting for the news media and or Ministers Lashley or Jones to tell the nation what is the official position on the law as it relates to bus fares for children in uniform travelling on ZR’s and Minibuses.

  6. Samantha Best March 14, 2018 at 3:45 pm

    Everyone around here likes to jump on the bandwagon. There are some routes which have no Transport Board Service. So there is no choice for those children who live in these areas. Namely:-

    Club Morgan
    Rendezvous Gardens
    Howells & Ivy

    Additionally check the areas these Minibuses and ZR”s serve. Mostly depressed neighbourhoods-Brittons Hill, Silver Hill, the Ivy, Bay Land, the Pine. How is the ZR culture impacting on these children and the schools they attend? It may be cheaper in the long run for the Gov’t to invest in the buses than having to expand the police service, more prisons, social workers, psychologists, psychiatrists etc. Parents from these neighbourhoods not serviced by Transport Board will have to find the additional fare or let the children walk.

    We always look at these matters while wearing donkey blinkers.

  7. Carson C. Cadogan March 14, 2018 at 5:18 pm

    What kind of bogus survey is this???

    You all interviewed THREE(3) idiotic people with jaundiced views and came away with the grand conclusion that : ”The travelling public is throwing its support behind a plan by privately run public service vehicle (PSV) owners to increase the fare for school children””.

    I have never seen anything more stupid in all my life.

    Slow news day or what?????????????

  8. Mas March 14, 2018 at 5:40 pm

    Is it legal for PSV owners to increase fares?.

    I suggest they carefully read the act under which they operate.

  9. Mac March 14, 2018 at 7:26 pm

    Is it legal for PSV owners to increase fares?

    I would like to suggest they read the act and regulations under which they operate

  10. Blaazer March 14, 2018 at 8:40 pm

    I thought that bus fares was regulated by the government, so if the association can increase the fares of school children, what is stopping them from doing the same for adults.

  11. Cecil Brooks March 14, 2018 at 10:01 pm

    iam trying to understand you people at Barbados Today, you seem to play games with information. You have in bold ” on board, Bajan back planned PSV fare hike for students”. what is your motive, do you as a news organization profit from this nonsense. Do you know that there is no Transport Board bus service in a number of places on this island, so these children have no option but to take the ZR’s and Mini Buses. This alone makes your story, because this is not anything but a story so false. so my question to Barbados Today will you do over this news item again, for the simple reason these children who live in areas where there is no Transport Board bus should be protected from this kind of unjust profiteering. Please public my comment done on 14th March,2018 at 1.56 pm

  12. Latonya Belgrave March 14, 2018 at 10:34 pm

    I love my country. I cannot speak for others but in relation to what Mr Carson C. Cadogan said about the survey . Should say alot about ones character and motives . This is not political ! It is facts and ideas from the people of barbados. Who isn’t crying down on what others are trying to achieve . Understand clearly love latonyaBelgrave.

  13. Kevin March 15, 2018 at 9:35 am

    BT getting like Brasstacks. Taking the opinion of a few, and then stamping that opinion on the whole of Barbados.


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