Only 447 young people have signed up for free transport in Lisbon in the first week of the measure, reports CNN Portugal. In contrast, almost 6,000 elderly people in Lisbon have signed up for free transport.
The measure was rolled out for elderly people in Lisbon on July 25. After almost a month of the measure being available to the elderly, over 20,000 people over the age of 65 signed up.
Young students between the ages of 13 and 23 years old have only been able to sign up since August 16. These can start enjoying free transport in September.
Of the 447 young people that signed up, 318 were between the ages of 13 and 18. Only 129 were between the ages of 19 and 23.
Chegou a vez dos mais jovens!
Se tens ‹23 anos podes aderir a partir de hoje, 16 de agosto, para começar a viajar gratuitamente em setembro.
— Carlos Moedas (@Moedas) August 16, 2022
However, the measure excludes those with a fiscal residency in the municipality, which includes relocated students that benefit from scholarships.
The Social Action Services (SAS) from the University of Lisbon have criticized the fiscal residency factor. SAS said that “economically disadvantaged students, with a fiscal residence outside of Lisbon, including those living away from their families,” will not be able to benefit from free transport.
Lisbon City council said that the measure “will be permanently evaluated and monitored to look for more solutions, whenever they are possible.”
The free transport measure was announced in April by the Lisbon city council. The Mayor of Lisbon, Carlos Moedas from the Social Democratic Party (PSD) celebrated this decision, reminding us that only a few European cities have taken this step to fight climate change.
The measure will cost around €6,266,000 in 2022, and for 2023, 2024, and 2025, should cost around €14,900,000 a year.