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Saturday, January 23, 2010

Transport fare study for buses in Karachi City

Final year project by | Saad Shahid and Muhammad Shahrukh


In every country around the globe there is a rationale approach for the assessment of an efficient public transport affected by fare. Unfortunately, limited amount of work has been done in this field during the past few decades in Pakistan.

Public incomes are always vulnerable to fare. No efforts have been made before to develop an assessment model which could provide efficiency of public transport for analyzing the condition of buses. Therefore, our purpose here was to establish a post efficiency transport model. “Efficient public transport usage and existing mechanism of Karachi with reference to land use and fare policy” consists of understanding the public bus service mechanism and understanding the perception of public regarding fare change.

Fares will be sent with a full understanding of the cost of service operation with respect to the variable operating and fixed costs, and the relationships to trip generation so that services are provided at a minimum cost against agreed quality of service.

The model could be further extended to analyze the household income of the consumer affected by fare and find the affordability in terms of fare and quality of service.

Bus routes and the relation with the bus stops would be analyzed and the land use along the university road would be observed for the purpose to find out trip generation and dependency on public transport.


Conclusion and recommendation

Bus Stop and user’s relationship
  • Travel time to reach the bus stop: 2-3 min
  • But improper headways maintained by public transport buses so problem faced by users.
  • Waiting time: average 5-6 min.
  • Problem is that bus operators do not follow officially placed bus stops. Less people use the facility.
  • Reason is that more people use those points which the bus operators have made as their stop points.
This is due to the following reasons:
  • Security problems.
  • User mentality.
  • Improper location of officially placed bus stops.

The people interviewed on the routes have to walk 2-3 minutes to reach the bus stop from the nearby areas and the bus stops officially placed on the road sides are taken in consideration and are marked in our study. The area to be noticed is that the bus stops are not being followed by bus operators but they have their own areas of stop, that is due to the limited placements of the bus stop location by authorities.

The commercial lands generate a greater amount of population using public transport. Educational institutes and government institutions have the greatest amount of user groups of public transport. This shows that the university road has a tremendous public transport dependency.



In spite of all the drawbacks, a system of transport does exist in Karachi with almost negligible support from public sector. It cannot be suddenly and totally replaced (in the given set of conditions), only a gradual process, spread over a period of time , is feasible. Nevertheless there is room for further improvements in access to and quality of public transport for sustainable livelihoods of the poor. Our study came out with the fare value of 9 Rupees average fares which has maximum affordability.

One of the major factors behind the lengthy travelling of the present system is the unplanned and irrational distribution of routes across the city. The findings of the research revealed a number of examples of passengers having to travel long distances in the wrong direction because there are no connections or direct routes to their destination. The land use pattern of university road shows that from morning 7 AM the peak hours of public transport initiate and end at 4 PM, the commercial market attracts a greater flow of public in the night hours 8 PM-12 AM.


Vehicles should be tested properly for fitness. Corruptly issuing a certificate without a proper examination can endanger lives, and should not be allowed to happen. Traffic police should really control traffic and the curb violations, not make the routine check-ups simply a source of bribes. Drivers should not speed: owners should not create conditions that force the drivers and conductors to speed.

Karachi Circular Railway If bus arrives on time and a passenger don’t have to keep changing the buses then public who travel in car will certainly afford it. Owners of buses and minibuses are not very educated people and they have got stereotype attitude and they charge high price on fare. Actually government withdraw from the facilities, like transport and circular railway, and have left the citizen on the mercy of private bus owners and these caused to establish their monopoly. This study has paved the way for an affordable transport cost for both the operator and user group.

Transporters are of the opinion that we collect the money and give it to mafia just to save our skins otherwise our transports are full of flaws and any one can catch us anywhere. That makes the mafia very strong and they provide bribery to police officials to senior administrator so all of them have stakes in the system. It can be improved only from the top and through policies.

The ability of official agencies to cope with transport problems has also been impaired by lack of sufficient resources, particularly trained staff. When serious transport problems arise, agencies often have little choice but to resort to stop gap solutions. As a result, the overall transport situation deteriorates and the efficiency of the urban areas suffers. Thus considerable attention must be paid to institutional reorganization and the training so that public transport schemes can be properly planned. Designed, implemented, and enforced.

At the official level, appropriate responsibilities include the development and  monitoring of transport policies, standards, specifications, and laws. Identifying and supervising research are also important responsibilities. In addition official agencies should provide advice and assistance to local level agencies on the planning, design, and implementation of traffic management schemes. Eventually the agency should develop the ability to identify, appraise, and supervise urban transport policy including the fare which is acceptable to both consumers and transporter groups.

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Saad Shahid

Saad Shahid(left) and Muhammad Shahrukh (right) are Urban Engineers from NED University. They received their undergraduate degree this year (2010).

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