Road Safety and Transport Authority’s (RSTA) revised fares for passenger bus and taxi will come into effect from October 1.

Fares for passenger bus has increased by Nu 0.08 – 0.15 for both local and long distance, while fares for taxi service has gone up by Nu 2 for both long and local distance.

With the revision, it would now cost Nu 20 a kilometer (KM) to travel by taxi in a local area and Nu 18 a km for long distance.

For journeys outside a district in a coaster bus, the existing rate for the hilly route is Nu 1.29 a km, which has now increased to Nu 1.44. A passenger travelling from Thimphu to Punakha (71Km) in a coaster bus will now pay Nu 102.24, Nu 10.65 more than the existing rate of Nu 91.59.

The city bus fare has also increased from Nu 1.83 a km to Nu 1.98 a km.

According to RSTA, the fares have been revised due to an increase in fuel price and other operating costs. “All concerned are requested to note and comply with the revised fare rates.”

RSTA officials said operating cost includes fuel price, cost of vehicles, drivers’ salary and maintenance cost, among others.

The cost of petrol has increased by Nu 2.7 a litre and diesel by Nu 3.2 a litre in Bhutan as of September 16. The fuel prices in the country change every fourth night.

Petrol in Thimphu now costs Nu 69.07 a litre and Nu 66.89 a litre in Phuentsholing while a litre of diesel in Thimphu costs Nu 68.12 and Nu 66.16 in Phuentsholing. This is the highest fuel price the country has experienced in the last three years.

Last year, the country witnessed the highest petrol price of Nu 65.54 a litre and Nu 58.67 a litre for diesel.

Since June 1 this year, there have been four increases and three reductions in the price of both petrol and diesel, resulting in an increase of petrol by Nu 3.68 a litre and diesel by Nu 4.83 a litre.

The authority last revised the fares for public transport in December last year.

The revised fare charts for both bus and taxi are available on the authority’s website.

Dechen Tshomo