A STUB bus, Source: Município de Bragança

Free public transport seems here to stay in Bragança

Free public transport seems here to stay in Bragança

The beneficial measure was instituted during the COVID pandemic, and the current mayor would like it if it could go for as long as possible

Free public transport in the Portuguese city of Bragança has evolved in stages to where it is today, and according to mayor Hernâni Dias, it will continue to be offered in the foreseeable future, or at least for as long as he occupies that position.

"It will stay like this until we take a measure that reverses this decision, I think it should not happen, at least, while I am mayor it will continue," said the social-democratic mayor, who is serving his last term, as quoted by Lusa news agency.

In his view, European public transport operators are moving towards a trend of providing free services for residents, which is something his city should be proud of as it is ahead of many other municipalities in that matter.

Public transport: a social and an environmental cause

Several years ago, the Bragança Urban Transport Service (STUB) began offering free services to children and teenagers. However, when the COVID pandemic arrived in 2020 this caused difficulty to many families to use private transport, which is why the local government decided to expand the benefit of free mobility to everyone and since then no tickets have been sold by STUB.

In fact, free transport applies not only to the city limits but also to the public bus routes linking Bragança with nearby localities in the same county!

The mayor stressed that the objective is also that “public transport is used, not only to ease the financial issues of the citizens themselves but also for environmental issues”, encouraging the use of public transport to contribute “to the preservation of the environment and the goals of the strategy to combat climate change”.

The measure, as he noted, “has some financial impact” which he did not specify and which he considered “not extremely relevant”, noting that “it is a measure of support for all families” in a municipality where, like the entire Trás-os-Montes region, the only public transport is the bus.



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