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Commuters spared stricter two-hour tickets - for now

Date

Bridie Smith

The roll-out of strict two-hour public transport fares has been delayed, as Victoria's transport authority irons out potential glitches in the new system.

The fares, which would expire after exactly two hours instead of taking effect from the next whole hour after touching on, were due to begin on Tuesday.

A Public Transport Victoria spokesman said the strict two-hour fares would now be introduced next month, although a date wasn't specified.

The spokesman would not elaborate as to why there had been a delay, other than to say testing was in the final stages and authorities were still ''finalising system requirements''.

Under the current system, travellers can use public transport for up to two hours and 59 minutes after validating. 

In a statement, the PTV spokesman said the stricter fare would aid public transport cost recovery and enable greater investment in the system.

Public Transport Users' Association president Tony Morton said a lack of publicity ahead of the July 1 deadline, would have taken a lot of people by surprise had the new system started on schedule. He encouraged authorities to raise awareness now, ahead of the anticipated introduction of stricter fares in August.

Dr Morton said the stricter fares could also make it harder for commuters to remember the time their fare expired. 

''It's easy to remember an on-the hour expiry time. It's not easy to remember 2.47pm,'' he said.

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