Taipei, Aug. 30 (CNA) A scheduled fare increase on Taiwan's bullet trains means that some riders will be paying almost 10 percent more per ticket starting Oct. 8.
The High Speed Rail Corp. said Friday that the price adjustments, which whill raise fairs between 7.1 and 9.6 percent, will be the first since the High Speed Rail (HSR) began commercial operation in 2007.
Under the new price scheme, a one-way trip from Taipei in the north to Zuoying in the southern city of Kaohsiung will jump to NT$1,630 (US$54) from the current price of NT$1,490.
The shortest trip offered by the HSR, from Taipei to Banqiao in New Taipei, will rise to NT$45 from NT$40.
The company plans to offset the sting of increasing ticket prices by expanding its "early bird" promotion program, which will offer 35 percent discounts on off-peak trips for passengers who book eight or more days in advance, it said.
The discounts will be effective as of Oct. 8, with early bird booking for that date available online starting Sept. 11, it said.
According to the Ministry of Transportation and Communication, HSR fares were originally set for an increase in 2009, but the date was moved back as a result of the ongoing global financial crisis at the time.
(By Lee Hsin-Yin)