Taipei mayor demands investigation into possible misuse of MRT monthly ticket

Holder of Taipei MRT monthly pass took NT$10,000 worth of rides, suspected of delivering goods

Taipei MRT monthly pass is intended to boost ridership. 

Taipei MRT monthly pass is intended to boost ridership.  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taipei City Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) on Monday (July 6) shined a spotlight on the hidden problems of the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) monthly ticket, demanding an investigation into a rider who used his pass for NT$10,000 (US$340) worth of rides.

During a meeting at the Taipei City Hall Monday morning, Ko said that the monthly riding program was intended to boost passenger numbers, but it has created a financial burden for the city government instead. Priced at NT$1,280 (US$44), the ticket allows unlimited rides on the MRT, city buses, and YouBikes in both Taipei and New Taipei for a 30-day period.

Ko said there should be discussions about placing a cap on maximum rides allowed for each ticket holder to prevent cases of misuse. He stressed that some passengers have taken rides at an abnormally high frequency, including an individual who used his pass for NT$10,000 worth of rides.

Ko said he suspected the individual took advantage of the fare scheme and was using it for delivery purposes. He added that the authorities should look into the passenger's routes for clarification, reported CNA.

To address Ko's concerns, the Taipei Department of Transportation (DOT) Division Chief Liao Yun-ling (廖苑伶) said that the average fare for an MRT monthly ticket holder is NT$1,600, and individuals "misusing" the program are a rarity. She promised that the DOT would investigate passengers who abuse their privileges, emphasizing that no ride limit would be implemented at the moment, reported ETtoday.

Taipei City Mayor Ko Wen-je. (CNA photo)