Much to the surprise of thousands of Cairo commuters, metro price tickets in the capital have increased on Monday.
The short-notice news had been initially announced on Sunday by Egyptian Transportation Minister Kamel Al Wazir, as per Al Ahram.
The most reduced ticket 3 EGP was scrapped entirely, leaving in its stead the 5 EGP one for the one to nine stops.
The ticket price for nine to 16 stops has also gone up from 5 EGP to 7 EGP and one to 16 to 40 stops now costs 10 EGP rather than 7 EGP.
Such an increase in prices has been justified through the fact that the revenues of the metro are 4 EGP billion although the operational costs of the metro, widely used by Cairo commuters on a daily basis, only amount to EGP 8 billion.
Last year, the state also increased the fees, sparking outrage and protests which lead to some arrests.
The rise in fares, gradual over the last years and also inclusive of other subsidies such as fuel, wheat and electricity, comes as Egypt implements tough reforms tied to a $12 billion International Monetary Fund agreement, aimed at boosting economic growth.
Egypt’s metro system is one of the oldest in the Middle East and Africa. It stands as one of Egypt’s most used and affordable means of public transportation as official taxi fares start at EGP 7 while Uber and now-Uber acquired Careem are considered pricier options.
Cairo’s metro transports around 3 million people every day. The ministry believes that the new stops will add at least 500,000 travelers to the already large commuting population.