25 November, 2022

2022 Fares Benchmarking Report released

The NineSquared Fares Benchmarking Report for 2022 has been released. The report is the eighth in the fares benchmarking series and again includes an assessment of the affordability of fares across 45 transit systems across 38 cities and 20 countries. The report uses data from the NineSquared fares database which contains a much larger dataset and much more detail on fares and fare products offered in 94 cities around the world. More detail on the NineSquared fares database can be found here.

The fares benchmarking report estimates the number of minutes needed to be worked at both the minimum wage and the average wage applying in each city in the database to provide a comparative snapshot of the relative price of public transport in each city. The cost at both levels of wage rates is estimated for:

  • The lowest priced, one-way, peak period ticket paid for using the lowest cost payment method available to full fare paying customers
  • The price of a 15km journey in each city, again, one way, in the peak period and paid for using the lowest cost payment method available, and
  • The price of taking 10 trips in a week and 40 trips in a month to customers, again, in a peak period and paid for using the lowest payment method available to full fare paying customers.

Key findings

Shortest journey fares

As in previous years, Beijing’s bus service leads the field in affordability on the basis of the minutes needed to be worked at minimum wage. New Zealand’s temporary, but long term 50% reduction in fares across government funded bus services has improved rankings this year for both Wellington and Auckland while Darwin, the capital of the Northern Territory in Australia rounds out the 5 most affordable cities in this year’s report.

Fares for a 15 km journey

The time required to work at both the minimum and average wages for longer journeys changes increases for distance and zonal based systems but not for the just over half of the cities in the database that offer their customer flat fares. Having said that, even with a distance-based fare structure, Beijing's bus service remains the cheapest public transport system across a 15 km journey requiring just 3.6 minutes of work at the minimum wage in that city. Beijing also is the most affordable when considering the number of minutes required to be worked at the average wage. Affordability in flat fare systems perform better as distances increase. Notable movements in affordability include Los Angeles which moves from 9th to 5th as distance increases and Jakarata's BRT system which moves from 12th to 7th place at the longer distance.

Download the 2022 Fares Benchmarking Report

More detail can be found in the Fares Benchmarking Report which is available for download from the NineSquared Website by completing the form below.


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