Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — Many transport agencies in HCM City plan to increase fares on Friday and Saturday (August 31 and September 1) of the upcoming three-day National Day holiday, though experts have disputed the rationale for the increase.
Kiều Nam Thành, general director of Miền Đông (Eastern) Bus Station, said the number of passengers is expected to increase by two per cent compared to the same period last year.
He predicted that the price would likely be raised by 30-40 per cent to cover the loss of inbound routes from other cities and provinces to HCM City.
The coaches used on the holiday will not have passengers coming back from the provinces to the city, so the fare increase to cover the loss is reasonable, according to Thành.
However, according to economic experts, the fare increase makes no sense. Bùi Trinh, for example, told Thanh Niên (Young People) newspaper that on normal days there is always an imbalance on two-way routes.
On holidays, the number of passengers on inbound routes falls two to three times, but it increases by three to four times on outbound routes. So the increase to cover the loss is illogical, Trinh said.
Lawyer Nguyễn Văn Hậu, chairman of the HCM City Commercial Arbitration Centre, said the transport companies are taking advantage of high passenger demand.
In particular, the fee will increase up to 30 per cent for routes from HCM City to Bà Rịa Vũng Tàu, Bình Dương, Bình Phước, Đồng Nai, Central Highland provinces, Ninh Thuận, Bình Thuận, Khánh Hoà, Phú Yên, Bình Định, and Quãng Ngãi.
For routes from the city to provinces in Mekong Delta, the fee will increase up to 40 per cent.
In addition, the number of passengers at the Miền Tây (Western) Bus Station is expected to increase 4-6 per cent compared to the same period last year, with the fare increasing by 40 per cent.
The station is working with other transport agencies to add 30 coaches to reach passenger demand during the holiday.
Coach fares same in Hà Nội
In the meanwhile, coach operators in major stations in Hà Nội have not announced any increases to coach fares during the National Day holiday.
This year, Việt Nam’s National Day – September 2 - falls on Sunday so formal workers have a day off on Monday, September 3.
Travel demand is expected to increase during the three-day holiday but it’s likely coach fares will not be hiked, at least at stations in Hà Nội.
Nguyễn Anh Toàn, director of Hà Nội Coach Stations Joint Stocks Company, said that up till now, the company had not received any proposals for fare increases from coach operators in stations like Giáp Bát, Mỹ Đình or Gia Lâm. — VNS