Valley Metro increasing bus and light rail fares

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Valley Metro increasing public transportation fares

PHOENIX - A ticket to ride is on the rise and getting around the Valley will be more expensive for lots of commuter.

There was a vote on Thursday to boost the fare for light rail and bus trips. Ridership on the light rail is way up but still the price to ride is about to go up too and that has riders taking notice.

Frank Conley, who rides bus, says, "I don't feel like parking or paying for gas."

It is the reason why Conley and thousands of others ride the bus and light rail.

Starting July 1, public transportation will cost you more money. Susan Tierney, with Valley Metro, explains, "Our costs continue to rise and we don't want to cut services." So Valley Metro is raising the one-way light rail and bus fare from $1.25 to $1.75.

Tierney says, "If you bought an all-day pass for the local bus or metro light rail that would increase to $3.50.

Riders 3TV spoke with say they are not surprised or disappointed. One admits, "That's not that bad of a hike." Daniel Leamon, who rides the bus, adds, "It's only 50 cents so I'm not worried about it."

The last rate hike was in December 2007 and prior to that in 1994. Valley Metro says this rate hike will help compensate for declining sales tax revenue and bus riders like Joel Trachtenberg say, "It's still going to save me money from my commute. I'll still take the bus."

Still the best advice is to plan ahead purchasing your pass because the convenience of buying on the bus will you cost $5.25, which is three times the one-trip fare.

Tierney says, "Because we want to help speed up the boarding of those passengers getting on and help our buses run more efficiently."

So again, save money and plan ahead. There are more than 80 outlets all over the Valley where you can buy bus tickets and there are vending machines at all 28 light rail stops. You can also purchase monthly passes online.