Minister keeps out of train ticket row

Junior transport minister Tineke Huizenga, in charge of the introduction of the new public transport smart card, is not planning to take direct control of the system despite soaring complaints about the complicated fee structure, the Telegraaf reports on Friday.

Provinces, city councils and the public transport firms must sort out the problems themselves, the paper quoted her as saying. ‘I assume they will be able to reach an agreement,’ she said. ‘They have not disappointed me so far.’
In parlicular MPs and passenger lobby groups are angry that travellers have to pay a second fee when they switch between train companies . For example, train passengers who switch from a state-owned NS train to a privately-owned Veolia service during the same journey have to pay a second boarding charge.
And single-journey tickets sold on Amsterdam city buses are not accepted on Connexxion buses which serve nearby towns, forcing passengers to pay twice.
Before the introduction of the public transport smart card – ov-chipkaart – the Netherlands public transport system was completely integrated. Bus, tram and metro companies all acceped the same paper tickets as did train operators.
The smart card is currently only compulsory on the Rotterdam and Amsterdam metro.

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