In view of the expiring 9-euro ticket, the Berlin mobility researcher Andreas Knie has called for a nationwide monthly ticket for 29 euros including a taxi. This should apply to all buses and trains and also to long-distance traffic, the sociologist demanded in an interview with the Evangelical Press Service (epd). The so-called “last mile” should also be included: “So a flat rate on the taxi, with which I can travel from my home to the starting point and finally to the exact destination.”
Scheduled buses in rural areas can no longer keep up with car companies, said Knie. “Buses were a good idea before the invention of the car.” Now these means of transport only worked in urban areas. Even in cities with 100,000 inhabitants, the journeys were no longer worthwhile. “A bus that drives somehow is a pure alibi event.”
With the so-called pool taxi, on the other hand, rural areas could be developed better and more cheaply, emphasized the scientist from the Berlin Social Science Center. “The taxi must become a means of mass transport and it can do that.”
A 29-euro ticket would cost 14 billion euros, said Knie, who researches transport, technology and science policy. “But if you collected the diesel subsidy, the commuter allowance and the company car tax, we would have this sum immediately.” People would have to pay more for driving, but those with higher incomes could afford it. That would be ideal not only for social and climate policy reasons, but also with regard to peace policy, since a third of the oil still comes from Russia.
The 9-euro ticket for local and regional buses and trains, limited to three months, did not result in people switching from cars to public transport, said Knie. However, with almost 40 million tickets sold, it led to a “gigantic image enhancement”: “It was a huge try-out program, especially for people from lower income brackets.” (epd)