Bus fares throughout the Central Okanagan could be on their up after Kelowna city council was asked to approve a hike all types of bus tickets and passes.

Central Okanagan bus fares expected to increase

Kelowna city council approves an increase to all fares, including a new standard $2.50 per single ride.

Kelowna city has approved the first hike in local transit  fares in three years. Now it’s up to municipal councils in West Kelowna, Lake Country, Peachland,the regional district board and the Westbank First Nation council to agree.

At its regular Monday afternoon meeting, council was asked to support a move to standardize all single trip fares at $2.50 each, up from the current $2.25 for adults and college students and $2 for seniors and elementary, middle school and high school students charged now. Children under five will continue to ride for free.

In addition to hiking the single trip fare, sheets of 10 tickets will jump in cost to $22.50 from 20.25 for adults and college students, while seniors and students up to Grade 12 would a hike of $2.25 to $20.25.

Day passes for everyone will also be standardized at $6.50 each, up from the current $6 for adults and $5.50 for seniors and students,while monthly passes will increase by $10 for adults to $70 each, $3 for seniors to $45 each, $7 for college students to $55 each and $7 for students up to Grade 12 to $45 each.

Family Max for Students passes will jump by $17 each to $112 each, while the UPASS for university and college students would cost $70 as of September 2016, up from the current $60 if approved in a referendum of UBCO students.

City staff say the increases, the first since 2012, are needed achieve a 27 per cent per cent cost recovery for the local transit system. The municipality’s had said they wanted a 30 per cent cost recovery but that would have required a 29 per cent increase in fares.

The transit system in the Central Okanagan is funded by Kelowna, Lake Country, West Kelowna, Peachland, the regional district and the Westbank First Nation and B.C. Transit, with the municipal partners’  portion reduced by revenue raised by fares.

Last year, transit cost $20 million to provide here.

Kelonwa Mayor Colin Basran supported the fare increase saying he did not buy the argument that the hikes would push more people off the bus and back into their cars.

He said while the transit system is good, its not perfect but to make it better more revenue is needed from the fare box.

The municipal partners discussed increasing fares last year and recommended a 16 per cent fare increase instead of the then-recommended 29 per cent increase local transit planners said was needed to achieve the 30 per cent cost recovery.

The fare and pass increases will go into effect in September if supported by the other area local governments.

Just Posted

Column: Make it a green Christmas

Instead of purchasing a cuddly stuffie this year, put your money towards helping the real thing.

Sagmoen neighbours recall alleged hammer attack

Woman was screaming outside Maple Ridge townhouse in 2013

Kelowna city councillor suggests bringing back photo radar

Gail Given says it could help generate traffic fine revenue for the city—and make roads safer

‘Game changer” research deal between three B.C. Interior universities

UBCO, TRU, UNBC say deal will help innovation, research, aid students and increase quality of life

What’s happening

Find out about the events happening in your community this weekend

Lind nets three in Rockets win; Dube and Foote named to Canada’s roster

Kole Lind returns from national junior camp to lead Rockets to victory in P.A.

Interior Health holding immunization clinic in Vernon Saturday

IH issues list of Okanagan meningococcal immunization clinics

Court denies WestJet’s bid to toss out discrimination lawsuit of former worker

Mandalena Lewis is suing WestJet over allegations of gender-based discrimination

VIDEO: 3 months later, rescued sea lion released back into ocean

The young animal was found in Campbell River three months ago

Annual Christmas meal held as Kelowna Gospel Mission

The meal will be held tomorrow from 12 to 6 p.m.

Michaels: Big Brother has become a big letdown

“You have nothing to fear if you have nothing to hide, but privacy should still have some appeal.”

One convicted, two cleared in 2014 deaths of men in B.C.’s Cariboo

Andrew Jongbloets convicted of manslaughter in deaths of Matthew Hennigar, 23 and Kalvin Andy, 22

Accused Shuswap drug smuggler to be extradited

Supreme Court of Canada upholds extradition order for accused Shuswap drug smuggler, Colin Martin

Most Read