Currently, in Luxembourg, the Democratic party has formed a coalition with the Socialist Workers’ party and the Greens. They’re led by the prime minister, Xavier Bettel, who recently started his second term in the position. This coalition government has wonderfully promised that they will make the environment their priority in the coming years.
It seems that the prime minister and his government have stayed true to their word. Now, Luxembourg is planning to make all public transport completely free.
The Route of the Problem
The catalyst for this ambitious project was because of the country’s capital city, which is named Luxembourg City. Despite its small population and size, it suffers from some of the worst traffic congestion in the entire world. This is because, although the population of Luxembourg City is only 110,000, approximately 400,000 more people commute to there every day for work.
It’s not just the capital that’s suffering either. The country as a whole has just over 600,000 inhabitants but has people from neighboring countries commuting there. Almost 200,000 people from France, Belgium, and Germany drive into Luxembourg every day for work.
The First Small Steps
This country has been trying to change how their public transportation system works for a while now. Currently, tickets for commuters only cost €2 and last for 2 hours. In such a small country, this is enough time to cover almost all journeys.
Along with that, they made all transport free for every person under the age of 20. They also set up free shuttles to take secondary school students from their schools to their homes.
A Progressive Government
Transport and environmental efforts aren’t the only things that they’re trying to reform. The government of Luxembourg is also looking at how they approach health services too. At the moment, debates are taking place about the possibility of legalizing the possession, purchase, and use of recreational cannabis.
Along with that, they’re also planning to create two new public holidays. On these days, workers will be given a day off and a chance to rest.
Plans for the Future
This summer, the coalition government plans to remove all fares on trams, buses, and trains to encourage people to use it instead of driving. Their aim is to reduce traffic congestion and lower the greenhouse gases emitted from the use of cars. They also plan to abolish all tickets by 2020.
There are still some kinks that need to be worked out before they can move forward with this, however. As of now, they have yet to make a decision on what to do about first and second-class tickets on public transport. Despite that, decisions will most likely be made before the summer begins.
It seems that Luxembourg and its government are making a lot of progressive choices. If things move forward as planned, they will be the first country in the world to make public transport free to everyone. It’s the kind of forward thinking that our planet needs to help reduce the effects of climate change along with making things better for its citizens.
Do you think that other countries should start making public transport free too? Share your opinions with us and your friends.