10 May 2015

KL-Singapore High Speed Rail could cost RM240 per trip, experts predict

  10 May 2015

KUALA LUMPUR, May 11 — Users of the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore high-speed rail can expect to pay around S$90 (RM240) each way once the line connecting the Malaysian capital to the republic is complete, according to estimates from transportation experts.


Polled by The Straits Times in Singapore, they suggested that ticket pricing could be between S$80 and S$90 in each direction, and said it was unlikely that prices will be low enough that the average office worker could expect to afford a daily commute between both destinations.

“I have great difficulty believing that the price of a ticket will be at a rate that regular workers can afford for daily commute,” Nanyang Technological University transport economist Walter Theseira told the Singaporean newspaper.

Theseira cited as example the 345-km Taipei-Kaohsiung rail line — of comparable distance to the KL-Singapore link — which charges NT$1,630 (RM190) per trip as a likely benchmark for ticket prices.

Another analyst, National University of Singapore transport expert Lee Der Horng also predicted a low capacity for the rail line, expecting it to be able to carry no more than 80 people in its 12-carriage trains.

Industry observers told the ST that the rail link may also use budget plane tickets as a yardstick for its own prices, and is likely to adopt the fluctuating price model used by airlines that change according to low and peak periods.

According to Theseira, the biggest benefactors of the line will be companies sending their representatives in either direction.

“Companies now book rooms for delegates for a night. With the HSR, they can return on the same day. This will significantly reduce the cost of doing business and spur partnerships between both countries,” he said in the ST’s report.

The rail line is also likely to boost tourism between the neighbours — Singapore is already Malaysia’s biggest source of tourist arrivals — as Ngee Ann Polytechnic tourism lecturer Michael Chiam said it will encourage more day trippers.

- See more at: http://m.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/kl-singapore-rapid-rail-could-cost-rm240-per-trip-experts-predict#sthash.kVBmIzh2.dpuf

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