Only overseas train tickets and first class tickets will remain chargeable at specific points of sale. From Saturday 29 February, Luxembourg will gradually withdraw the ticket machines from the stations, and grant free access to trains, buses and trams.

This measure was applied since August 2018 to those under 20 years of age. It is thus generalized.

"I'm happy, it's a good ecological measure. It makes life easier by not having to buy a card (25 euros) every month," says Anna Beirrao, getting out of a tram.

At the central station, this Saturday is the last day of opening of the counter.

The agents must be reclassified which does not prevent some anxiety. "We do not yet know what will become of us. All the public transport mobility agents are worried. It is not yet clear," said one of them, Yannick, at AFP.

Some 40% of households use public transport in Luxembourg and free travel, touted by the government as "a social measure", will represent an estimated savings of around 100 euros on average per household per year.

The car is queen

Traffic jams are frequent in this prosperous little country of 610,000 inhabitants where the car is king. Some 47% of business trips are made by this means.

The bus is only used for 32% of trips to work, in front of the train (19%). By way of comparison, in Paris, almost 70% of workers use public transport.

Some 200,000 cross-border workers also travel to Luxembourg daily to work, including 100,000 from the Grand-Est. They mostly use the car.

A plan that is not unanimous

This free service is part of a global strategy which provides for massive investments in projects intended to improve transport infrastructure.

For the train, 3.2 billion euros are planned to increase the capacity of the rail network until 2027, after 2.8 billion euros between 2008 and 2019.

This plan is not unanimous. "We have invested for years in the construction of roads. The government is making efforts, but there is a huge delay in terms of the development of public transport", explains Blanche Weber, president of the Luxembourg ecological movement, an environmental association , for whom "improving supply" is more important than free.

With AFP

The France 24 week summary invites you to come back to the news that marked the week

I subscribe

Download the app