Monday, September 27, 2010

Dublin Docklands - New Tram Service Starts On Wednesday

Luas tickets are purple in colour and credit-card sized. They bear a magnetic stripe on the back although this is not used on Luas itself. Uniquely among Dublin's public transport, tickets are not checked upon boarding trams and an honour system, combined with random inspections, is used.

Ticket machines operate at every Luas stop and these are the only source of single-journey and return tickets. They also sell 1-day, 7-day and 30-day tickets, valid in either some or all the fare zones, for adults, children and students.

It is also possible to purchase tickets valid on Luas and Dublin Bus. There is also a ticket valid on Luas plus Irish Rail commuter and DART services as far as Balbriggan and Maynooth. This is only available from Irish Rail ticket offices, not machines, and cost €8.60 as of May 2008.

Certain ticket combinations are not possible (for example a one-day student ticket), and tickets can only be valid from the stop at which they are purchased and must commence their validity immediately. Certain tickets require the user to hold an ID card and write the number on the ticket, to prevent the ticket from being transferred to another person.

Beginning from 21 April 2008, ticket machines do not accept credit card payments for transactions exceeding €50, until Chip and pin technology is introduced.

Luas tickets are sold at newsagents and other shops, mostly in the vicinity of Luas stops. Joint Dublin Bus and Luas tickets can also be purchased from Dublin Bus ticket agents, although these must be used at least once on a bus before they are valid for use on a Luas (since Luas does not use ticket validation systems upon boarding the tram). Certain tickets are cheaper in shops than at ticket machines.

The red line is divided into four zones, and the green line into three zones. Fares are calculated based on how many zones a journey is taken through. There is a stop on the border of each zone, which is considered to be in whichever zone is more beneficial to the traveller. The central zone is common to both lines. The two lines do not connect, but it is possible to purchase tickets which are valid for a journey using both lines. It is necessary to walk or take other transport between the two lines, most commonly between St. Stephen's Green (on the green line) and Abbey Street (on the red line). Alternatives include buses (the number 92 links St. Stephen's Green to Heuston and the number 18 links Ranelagh to Kylemore, although these are not included on the ticket) and taxis.

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