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Charlotte Amalie
Wednesday, June 19, 2024
HomeNewsLocal newsVITRAN Fare Changes Take Effect This Summer

VITRAN Fare Changes Take Effect This Summer

VITRAN fares are scheduled to increase June 1. (Photo courtesy VITRAN website)
VITRAN fares are scheduled to increase June 1. (Photo courtesy VITRAN website)

The Virgin Islands Department of Public Works announced a fare increase to the Virgin Islands Transit System fixed-route and paratransit services will take effect in June.

Starting June 1, fixed-route services will be $2 and paratransit services will be $4. Discounts for Medicare cardholders and free rides for seniors will remain in effect, a press release stated.

“Since 2021, we have been analyzing the financial viability of the services provided by VITRAN,” said Commissioner Derek Gabriel. “We have seen services being adversely impacted by global economic factors, such as the pandemic and operating costs have skyrocketed. While we have implemented revenue generating opportunities, the fact is we cannot continue operating under the current fee structure.”

According to the release, as mandated by the Federal Transit Administration, DPW officials conducted a public comment period from Feb. 28 through April. They decided on the new fares following this period. Originally, the changes were scheduled to go into effect April 15, but department officials decided that a summer date would provide more time for residents and visitors to prepare for the change.

The current fare has not changed since the inception of VITRAN services in 1994. An increase is necessary to offset rising fuel and maintenance costs and to provide more reliable services. VITRAN cannot sustain itself, expand, or hire more drivers without an increase, stated the release.

“I fully understand that the global economic factors confronting VITRAN affect our riders as well, which is why this decision is difficult,” Gabriel added. “However, the very survival of the service depends on this increase.”

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