Cheaper fares for Juneau

Letter to the editor

Posted: Wednesday, September 07, 2005

The price of getting out of Juneau appears to be a primary motivating factor for many of the road supporters in Juneau.

As Alaska residents, we own the ferry system. The managers are public servants, working for us. I propose that we (the public, including individuals and our local governments, businesses, and organizations) ask that fares for the ferry be adjusted to ensure that the system is being used at maximum capacity.

The ferry system demonstrated that half-price fares on trips to Pelican and Bartlett Cove could lure a lot of us out for day trips. Specials should be extended to other routes, including Juneau-Haines-Skagway. Businesses routinely use Web fare specials, discounts for advance purchases, standby fares, permanent fund dividend specials and other adjustments to fill vacant spaces that otherwise represent lost revenue (and, in the case of a public resource like the ferries, lost public service).

Fare reductions on excess capacity could be implemented immediately. Those who want to could then have an affordable fall getaway this year, even this month. Our ferry system would also realize increased revenues. Perhaps a simple solution can unite the community and region, and meet our transportation needs.

Karla Hart


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