FREE PUBLIC TRANSPORT
Free Public Transport
The idea of free public transport is one that has raised many views by both the proponents
and opponents. Indeed, it is an enticing idea. Belgium tried out the system for some years, but it
was later abolished. It is always a good thing to check out both sides of the issue. With the
current trade of climate change and global warming, the proponents claim that free public
transport is critical in reducing greenhouse emissions in our cities. Expectedly, the opponents
will rebut the claim. This essay seeks to illustrate that public transportation should not be free for
all city residents.
Firstly, free public transport will bring about crowding in the cities, especially during the
peak hours. Often, with a system of fares, it is cheaper to travel during the off-peak time than the
peak. Individuals have an incentive to move during the off-peak times. Hence, those with
significant flexibility will prefer to travel during this period. However, with free public transport,
there is no incentive and crowding occurs at peak times – the problem of congestion is barely
solved. Such trend is quite popular with free services. Consequently, fares can be used as a tool
to moderate demand and even control congestion in our cities (Prince, 2018).
Free transport is seen as a tool that brings equality. However, it does not produce fairness.
For some individuals, public transportation will hardly serve them well. Such include, high
profile individuals such as heads of major institutions, government officials, and even celebrities.
These individuals are taxpayers whose taxes are used by the government to fund the free public
transport program. They do contribute to the cost of service in which they barely use. That
results in the unequal distribution of resources (Prince, 2018). The costs of paying for public
transportation could be better spent elsewhere.