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Bus Transport and Railroads at the Time of Euro Changeover

Last update: 02.01.2009 06:00

Slovak Lines, a.s. - bus transport company
Železničná spoločnosť Slovensko, a. s. - railways

The Slovak Lines company has already performed the major bulk of preparations related to the euro changeover.
Inevitable software modifications have been completed and buses were equipped with new ticket machines. These upgrades were undertaken on a national scale by other bus transport companies as well.

The new ticket machines are capable of displaying dual fare prices both on the inherent display and the ticket. At the Bratislava bus station, near the cash desks, in the vehicles and on the Internet, the passengers can see the prices in both currencies – the euro and the Slovak koruna. Further notices and information will be supplemented.

Due to parallel use of two currencies, the first two weeks of 2009 will be difficult, yet manageable. In this transitional period, the use of a transport card in the cashless payment for fares will be a great timesaver for passengers and transport companies. With less effort having to be invested in handling a number of small coins, passengers may be served faster.

Moreover, the holders of transport cards do not have to worry about the balance on their cards. At the turn of the new year, at midnight, the balance on the transport card will be automatically converted to euros at the fixed conversion rate.

As of 20 August 2008, the Slovak Lines bus transport company launched the sales of transport cards for a discounted price of SKK 99 including a card pouch; prior to this date, the transport cards were priced at SKK 135 for students and SKK 155 for adults. This effort is aimed at motivating passengers to use transport cards as frequently as possible.

The Železničná spoločnosť Slovensko (Slovak Railways/ ZSSK) company became one of the signatories of the Code of Ethics for the Euro Changeover in May 2007. As part of the activities prescribed by law, the company offers dual display of prices on its tickets as of 24 August 2008 in the following manner:
Domestic fare – pricelist in Slovak korunas.
On the tickets, the final amount (not partial amounts) is indicated in Slovak korunas, while the price in euros is displayed for information purposes along with the conversion rate. The passengers pay in Slovak korunas.

Tickets with a pre-printed price (stubs) are exempt from the dual display obligation.

Vending machines are not subject to dual display obligation. The pricelist showing the fare in both currencies is displayed on the vending machines or in immediate proximity thereof.

International fare – the pricelist is prepared in the euro currency, without dual display. The travel ticket indicates the price in the Slovak currency and euro. Unlike other sectors, in the case of railway systems around Europe the fare is calculated on the basis of the so-called single railway exchange rate set by the transport company on a monthly basis. The exchange rate is published in the Transport and Tariff Pricelist issued by the Ministry of Transport, Posts and Telecommunications of the Slovak Republic. The conversion rate is therefore not printed on the ticket. The passengers pay in Slovak korunas or euros at the selected train stations as before.