19 Feb 2011

Soaring petrol prices send people to bikes and buses

6:48 am on 19 February 2011

The rising cost of petrol - now more than $2 a litre - is expected to make cycling and public transport more attractive to many people.

The cost of 91 octane broke through the $2 mark this week.

The last time that happened, in 2008, people cut back on using their cars or opted for alternatives such as car pooling, public transport, cycling and walking.

KiwiRail says the number of passengers in Wellington went up by 7% then and the pattern appears to be repeating itself.

The number using peak services rose by 2% in January and is up by 3% this month.

The Cycling Advocates Network says more people are using bikes because of high petrol prices, while the Wellington Regional Council says bus patronage is likely to increase.