All 2 entries tagged Singapore

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September 22, 2010

Where did all that time go!

In about a week's time, I'll be flying back to the UK! 

Almost time to submit report and poster. Second draft of report is finished, poster is unfinished yet. Hoping to get everything done by next Monday.

Of course, I made a rather good prediction - with the CSC resources going offline far too often in the past month, I've just barely managed to scrape by with the simulations I need. I've even resorted to running some on my 5 year old desktop at home!

Note to self: Think further ahead when running simulations - get the parameters right! I now have data which are not very compatible with each other, sigh. Wouldn't be that bad if I had the resources to get my simulations re-run quickly!

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Turns out after I posted the last entry I had the chance to speak to a friend who's working with the Singapore Land Transport Agency (LTA), and so I had a chance to ask him about Distance-based fares.

"So, how did you guys come up with the 66% figure? Based on real data?"

"Yes, that's right."

"Hmm, alright. Is it also true then that the fare decreases are mostly less than 10 cents while the increases are mostly greater than 10 cents?"

"Hmm, yes, you could say that."

"So there's an overall increase in revenue?"

"Yes."

Before anyone misunderstands, I'm not criticising the increase in revenue, after all, inflation is (somewhat) a part of life. I just wish to point out how a figure being thrown about can be rather meaningless, in this case the two-thirds having lower fares being repeatedly mentioned. I have no access to the real data to verify if it is true in any case. (Britons, rejoice that you actually have the Freedom of Information Act!)

In any case, I've done my fair bit in abusing the new fare system. I had to take a bus ride back home, where I was faced with the option of getting off and walking 7 minutes home or changing to a feeder bus service right to my doorstep. Under the old fare system, the latter would cost me an extra 25 cents. It cost me only 8 cents now.



August 17, 2010

Distance–based fares

Not related to my project, but of some academic interest IMO.

Original Press Release

Latest News article

Something that I've been following somewhat with interest, mainly because it affects my family and I directly! Also a good distraction as I'm now almost done with the URSS project.

There was a poll conducted in popular Singapore web forum. More than 80% of the people who answered the poll said they saw an increase in their transport fares. I am highly sceptical about this as the thread itself was rather politicised, so there exists a fair amount of bias.

However, I'm also highly sceptical of the figures touted by official sources. Foremost is, how did they arrive at the figure quoted?

Indeed, if you were supposed to give such a figure, how would you model and arrive at your answer? 

Next question: Given how people's travel patterns vary hugely, would quoting a % of people who would see a decrease in fares be meaningful?

From a policy perspective though, I will have to say that a move to distance-based fares is a good idea in principle. However, implementing it would be a bitch wouldn't it? There's also the question of bus routes being far from optimal - this is one of the main reasons why I dislike taking buses in general!


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