Passengers waiting for a Rodalies train

Madrid and Barcelona’s regional trains will be free to ride from September to December

Madrid and Barcelona’s regional trains will be free to ride from September to December

The Spanish government has decided to tackle the energy and inflation crisis with a pioneering move

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez announced yesterday a package of measures aimed to mitigate the growing inflation and energy crises in his country. Part of this package is the provision that commuter and medium-distance trains will be free to use from 1 September until 31 December.

In essence, this includes services operated by railway company Renfe, such as Madrid’s Cercanías and Barcelona´s Rodalies lines which connect the urban centres with their satellite towns. Media Distancia (Medium Distance) services are trains that connect smaller towns to their provincial centres, covering trips of less than 300 kilometres.

Which tickets are eligible?

Sánchez underlined that promoting public transport is one of the necessary measures to promote energy savings in a context in which the war in Ukraine may cause greater restrictions on the supply of gas from Russia to Europe.

His government’s aim is to encourage regular usage of public transport. That is why, there is one notable exemption to the free use of the listed train services – it will only apply to holders of multi-trip vouchers and monthly passes.

This means that single tickets will not be free. Neither will be Madrid’s multi-use pass which allows passengers to travel on Metro, EMT buses and Cercanías commuter trains. Earlier this month, however, the authorities had already introduced a 30% discount on tickets for the urban bus and metro services.

Other measures announced by the Spanish government, include new subsidies for solar panels and electric vehicles, as well as rewarding the creation of energy communities. Energy companies and banks will have to pay extra taxes on profits made from energy production or interest levying during the period 2023-2024.



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