The Tourism & Transport Forum Australia (TTF) has renewed its calls for the NSW Government to develop a dedicated Tourist Opal card following the end of paper tickets on Sydney’s transport network.
TTF has been a vocal advocate of the need to develop a specialised Opal card targeted at domestic and international visitors to Sydney to simplify their travel experience and encourage greater use of public transport to travel to key tourism attractions and precincts.
A dedicated Tourist Opal card also could have the added benefit of including discounts and access to Sydney’s major tourism attractions and experiences.
“Visitors, holidaymakers and business delegates are not your average city commuter. They are here for a limited period and are looking for a transport solution that is easy to understand and takes the confusion out of loading travel cards with money,” said Margy Osmond, TTF CEO.
“In other cities across Australia and the world, local transport agencies have developed dedicated tourist travel cards that make it easy to hop on a train, bus, tram or ferry to see the sights.
“They also provide the opportunity to be packaged as part of a broader tourism experience with access or discounts for major attractions, exhibitions and cultural institutions included with the card.”
Ms Osmond said in Denmark, a visitor can purchase a Copenhagen Card that covers all modes of transport, including trips to and from the airport, in addition to regional rail. It offers unlimited travel for one, two, three or five days and includes free admission to 72 museums and attractions, along with a range of other discounts for car hire, tours, shops and restaurants.
“The introduction of the Opal card has been a success story for Sydney with more than 8 million cards in circulation and the NSW Government should be congratulated for its efforts in managing the transition.
“Now with the end of paper tickets, it’s time to look at how we can build on the Opal card and a key opportunity for Australia’s global city and tourist gateway is the development of a dedicated Visitor Opal card that can unlock transport and our visitor economy for millions of travellers to Sydney.”