Two cross-border bus services are raising their fares following the implementation of higher toll charges by Singapore on Oct 1.
Handal Indah, which runs the Causeway Link bus service between Johor and Singapore, will raise its fares by up to 80 cents from next Monday.
Passengers boarding the yellow buses at the Queen Street station will be ticketed $3.30 if they pay cash, up from $2.50 now.
"It's just unfortunate," said Handal Indah's station manager in Singapore, Mr Johnny Low. "We did not increase the bus fares drastically at all for about 10 years."
This round of bus fare revisions began on Oct 1, when the Singapore-Johore Express, also at Queen Street, raised its fare from $2.50 to $3.Four other companies that operate cross-border bus services - Advance Coach, SBS Transit, SMRT and Transtar Travel - must go through the Public Transport Council to revise fares. So far, only Advance Coach has applied to raise its fare from $2 to $2.50.
Meanwhile, the fares for cross-border taxi services have remained at $40 for taxis leaving from the Queen Street kiosk, and $55 for a cab on call, said a Singapore-Johore Taxi Operators' Association spokesman. The Straits Times understands that a handful of Malaysian taxi drivers have started unofficially charging passengers more.
On Oct 1, toll charges were raised by Singapore from $1.20 to $3.80 for cars leaving the country. And while it was previously free to re-enter Singapore, it now costs $2.70. In combination with tolls levied by Malaysia on Aug 1, a two-way trip by car via the Causeway now costs around $13.
The higher Causeway tolls may have turned away some travellers to Malaysia this long weekend. Travellers The Straits Times spoke to between 4pm and 7pm yesterday said that it took a shorter time than usual to clear the Causeway.