Report: Free WRTA rides more economical than collecting fares

Full and original article posted on Worcester Business Journal

A new report by the Worcester Regional Research Bureau, Inc. encourages the Worcester Regional Transit Authority to continue with its fare-free program, arguing the cost of collecting fares would be more expensive than simply not having them.

“Paths towards continued fare-free should be seriously considered by the WRTA,” said the report, which WRRB published in March and pushed out on Wednesday.

Since March 2020, riding the buses operated by the Worcester Regional Transit Authority has been free of charge. Fare-free rides were implemented as a result COVID-19, and the program has been extended multiple times through June 2023, when it is set to expire unless the WRTA Advisory Board again extends the program.

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