YUSU Campaigns Officers are set to clash with the First bus company after the Ftr ten journey ticket was discontinued at the start of term.
Students bought the £11 discount ticket to avoid the flat rate of £1.50 single and £2.50 return fares. The replacement passes of £99 a term and £269 for a full academic year are seen as inadequate. It is thought the move by First is part of an attempt to standardise pricing across the country, and that the ten journey ticket has been phased out as a result.
At a meeting of the Union Senate it was decided that a petition would be the first step in trying to lower prices for students. Campaigns Officer Chris Swann said: “We will petition them directly at HQ, and petitions will appear across colleges and hopefully in town.” If this were to prove unsuccessful, direct action would be taken and sanctioned by YUSU. Swann said: “I’d support a boycott, but what’s unfortunate is that some second and third years have to take the bus every day. A boycott might not be in their best interest.”
Freshers were thought to be buying the higher priced term and yearly passes without realising that York town centre was just 25 minutes away on foot, and were therefore spending needlessly large sums of money on a service they would not always require.
The latest development in the ongoing dispute between First and its customers began at the start of this term, when Your: Shop displayed signs telling students that the popular discount pass was no longer available.
The weekly and monthly passes that First also offers are not as popular because the majority of campus residents, who are the primary customers at Your: Shop, do not need to use the bus daily. The Ftr is the only bus into town from campus and therefore has a monopoly on student customers. Students seem to be frustrated with the cost of the bus, together with faulty barcode scanning equipment, leaving many with fines for unpaid fares.