The aim of this research is to study the feasibility of implementing free city bus riding program, whether it is reasonable to be implemented in cities around Malaysia. This will involve investigating current bus services in towns and their strengths and weaknesses, and thus deducing the ultimate feasibility of such program. This report will access the advantage and disadvantage of the current bus service and free city bus service.
1.2 BACKGROUND INFORMATION
Free city bus ride is a program that provides the public a free bus service just like GOKL which is meant to serve the Kuala Lumpur Central Business District, with specified routes around the town. Free city bus service provides free transport to local people and even the tourists. However, this free city bus riding service currently is still an under-consideration program has yet to be implemented in all cities around Malaysia. This is because the constraint to implementing this free city bus riding program is whether it has more advantages than the disadvantages compared to the current bus service in town.
2.0 COMPARISON: The current bus service and free city bus service. 2.1 CONDITION OF THE ROAD
The condition of road congestion will be improved because special lanes will be provided for those free city buses to ensure their smooth flow. Thus, we can avoid traffic jam during pick hours which may cause the delay of bus schedule. In contrast, the current bus service has not been provided with these special lanes. Hence, this would add to the congestion on the road rather than easing the traffic flow.
2.2 THE PULL-PUSH TRANSPORT STRATEGY TO ENCOURAGE PUBLIC
The free city bus program acts as a strategy to encourage the usage of public transport service. The free city bus provides a wide network of connection
between one destination to another destination within the town as well as some circuitous routes are well chosen as a tourist landmark in the city center. This indirectly increases the income of the country as we can attract more tourists and at the same time maintain the usage between the private vehicles and the public transport. On the contrary, the failure of current bus service among the public is caused by the poor networking within the town. The citizens rather use their own vehicles than public transport. Consequently, the increasing number of vehicles on the road will in turn lead to higher rate of traffic accidents.
2.3 INDIVIDUAL BENEFIT
Implementation of this program could solve the matter of long period of working hour. The free city bus program is a systematic program that implements the job rotation to reduce the working hours of the bus driver. Hence, this could help to decrease the rate of unemployment as this program needs more bus driver. On the other hand, the current bus service still implements the old fashion rule which the working hours of drivers exceed 8 hours per day. Definitely, this does not comply with the labor rules and regulation. This matter has caused a sharp increase in bus driver complaints due to prolonged work and result in staff turnover.
Free city bus riding program is better and brings more advantages to citizens compared to the current bus service. Overall, this program has three main advantages. Firstly, it helps to reduce the road congestion and traffic accidents. Second, it helps to encourage the public transport usage. Third, it is more systematic and has proper work schedule for drivers compared to the current bus service.
After considerations, I would recommend that we can cooperate with the Ministry of Tourism to launch this program nationally and not limit to certain states only. By doing this, it can help to promote tourism because we have chances to introduce the interesting places and delicious Malaysian cuisine all around the cities to city bus passengers. Besides that, we can
decorate the wall of free city bus with travel posters and put some brochures and city maps in the bus as tourists guide. As a result, we can increase our national income as well as our nation’s image. This is because this program brings a lot of convenience to people especially tourists who are not familiar with the routes in our country.