NEWS

More opting for public transport

The recent strike by Greece?s taxi owners, which prompted the Athens Urban Transport Organization (OASA) to extend some of its key routes, has resulted in an upsurge in public transport users, early reports say.

Although official data from this summer season is not yet available, OASA employees spoke to Kathimerini of an ?unprecedented? increase in sales. Revenues from ticket sales in May rose by 23.5 percent, reaching almost 25.7 million euros, Kathimerini reported.

More and more people have ditched their cars over the past year because of the steep increase in gas prices, instead opting to use the bus, metro and tram.

Cabbies on Friday voted to suspend their strike 19 days after they began their protest against government plans to completely deregulate their sector.

Responding to stronger demand over the past weeks, two bus routes serving key Athens locations, including Piraeus port and Athens International Airport, have switched to 24-hour services. The X95 route, connecting the airport to Syntagma Square, has temporarily been extended to Piraeus.

?People seem to travel less because of the economic crisis, but at the same time there?s a clear shift to public transport,? Panayiotis Skaloubakas, deputy director at OASA, told Kathimerini.