The industry expects billions in additional costs for the 49-Euro ticket in Germany.

Die Finanzierung des DeutschlandticketsAccording to a forecast by the Association of German Transport Companies, public transportation will become significantly more expensive next year. This information was reported by the news agency dpa, citing a document from the Association of German Transport Companies (VDV). According to the association, there is an additional need of a total of 4.09 billion euros to maintain affordable tickets for 2024 – over one billion euros more than previously estimated.

The Association of German Transport Companies (VDV) suggests increasing ticket prices and expanding the number of users as potential measures to reduce the higher subsidy requirement. The VDV warns that if the funding is not covered, the ticket may be discontinued. Without sufficient financial provision or a liability for additional payments, the transport companies would not be able to continue issuing and accepting the ticket.

Wissing sieht Länder in der Pflicht

Since May 1, 2023, the ticket can be used for 49 euros per month – as a digitally bookable, monthly cancellable subscription throughout Germany. The losses incurred by the industry are shared equally between the federal government and the states. They amount to approximately three billion euros from 2023 to 2025.

Auch mögliche Mehrkosten über diesen Betrag hinaus sollen im ersten Jahr je zur Hälfte durch Bund und Länder geteilt werden – diese sogenannte Nachschusspflicht ist aber nur für 2024 gesichert; um ihre Fortsetzung streiten Bund und Länder. Bundesverkehrsminister Volker Wissing (FDP) lehnt eine höhere Kostenbeteiligung des Bundes ab und verweist auf die Zuständigkeit der Länder für den Regionalverkehr.

The Deutschlandticket is doing well – too well.

According to the forecast by the VDV, the money promised by the federal government and the states for 2023 is sufficient to cover the losses incurred by the Germany ticket. The main reason for the higher demand for 2024, as stated by the association, is the increasing number of passengers switching to the 49-euro ticket. This leads to lower revenues from other subscriptions and ticket sales, which are not offset by the revenues from the Germany ticket.

Given this, the VDV also estimates the effect of a price increase from 49 to 59 euros per month. This would result in lower sales figures, but higher revenues. Depending on the timing of the price increase, the subsidy requirements from the federal government and states would decrease – however, the extent of a negative customer reaction to a price increase cannot be accurately estimated.

According to the VDV paper, the sales figures for the ticket are currently in a „ramp-up“ phase for all alliances and companies. The association expects around 13 million regular users per year after its introduction, which is by the end of April 2024. However, the option for monthly termination is being used more intensively than expected. This creates more planning uncertainty for the transportation companies.

According to the VDV, overall, the price reduction in public transportation through the Deutschlandticket leads to „noticeable decrease in revenue“.