The nine-euro ticket apparently brings relief on the streets during rush hour. An analysis by the traffic data specialist Tomtom for the German Press Agency shows a decrease in the level of congestion in 23 of the 26 cities examined compared to the time before the introduction. The data "suggests that this decline is related to the introduction of the nine-euro ticket," said Tomtom traffic expert Ralf-Peter Schäfer. "Commuters lost less time driving to and from work in June than in May in almost all cities surveyed."
Specifically, the experts compared the congestion levels in rush-hour traffic on weekdays in calendar weeks 20 and 25. The periods were chosen to avoid the effects of vacations and public holidays. The result is clear: "In the first few days after the introduction of the nine-euro ticket, the data from Tomtom showed hardly any effects of the measure on car traffic. In the meantime, however, a positive effect on traffic flow can be seen in almost all cities in Germany find out," said Schäfer.
"The decrease in the loss of time varies from city to city," explained the expert. The improvement in the congestion level was particularly clear in Hamburg and Wiesbaden. There, the congestion level dropped by 14 and 13 points respectively. This means that on a route that would take 30 minutes without traffic, drivers lost an average of 4.2 minutes less in Hamburg and 3.9 minutes less in Wiesbaden. Tomtom only observed slight deterioration in Kiel and Nuremberg. In Karlsruhe, the level of congestion remained unchanged.
21 million tickets sold
According to the Association of German Transport Companies (VDV), around 21 million special tickets were sold nationwide in June, the first month of validity for the nine-euro ticket. "Together with the approximately ten million subscribers who automatically receive the discounted ticket, the number of 30 million tickets per month previously calculated by the industry has not only been reached, but even slightly exceeded," said VDV President Ingo Wortmann With. The figures relate exclusively to June. According to surveys by the VDV, people are said to have signaled a similarly high level of willingness to buy for July.
However, it is more difficult to determine how the ticket is actually used than the sales figures. Deutsche Bahn, through whose channels most of the special tickets were sold, speaks of an increase in passengers of ten to 15 percent in its own regional transport in June compared to the level before the Corona crisis.
However, according to the company, it is comparing different periods of time, namely June of this year with the demand at the end of 2019. The comparison is therefore limited. The fact is: Buses and trains were full, especially on the tourist routes. Because at the same time construction was at a record level, there were repeated cancellations and delays in many places. Frequently, passengers with bicycles had to stay outside.
After all, the railway subsidiary DB Regio offers 250 additional trips daily during the ticket period, according to its own statements. But in view of around 22,000 regional train journeys every day, that's not too much. "But the companies certainly can't retrofit any more, because they have neither the vehicles nor the staff," said the honorary chairman of the Pro Bahn passenger association, Karl-Peter Naumann, recently.