#FlattenTheFares Stories - Laura

I used to take the bus all the time; I dealt with sometimes being late or overcrowded on the #12. I paid cash because the extra 5 cents is nothing when a driver sees that your transfer just expired because they were late and lets you on anyways.

My eldest needs a child's fare now, so when I travel with him it costs $5.45. We often go to CHEO for appointments and essential medication. It's only 6km from my house but almost an hour by bus. We can't do the trip on a single transfer so it's $10.90 for a round trip. That adds up fast.

I bought a cargo bike when the bus got too expensive. It's not always easy carting two kids around on a bike, but I manage. With the bike, that CHEO trip takes half the time. And I don't have to worry about missed connections or buses that don't come. I really wish the bus was a more viable option. What about the people who can't bike?

We need a good public transit system that is affordable if we have any hope of meeting our emissions reduction targets. But with Covid-19 plus a fare increase, I'm worried that we're going to see people give up on transit for good. People are already worried about their safety while taking the bus or LRT and are looking for safer options.

Once we start raising fares, it's even easier to justify driving instead of taking the bus, especially since there's so much free parking everywhere. I want to do my part to make sure my kids have clean air and a stable climate, but it's hard to justify not taking a car when a day out on transit costs us $18.10 as a family of 4. Public transit should be a much more affordable option.



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