'I spend $90 a week just to get to university'- Wellington becoming too expensive to live in, students say


Tertiary students in Wellington are paying full price to get to university and saying it's just too hard to make ends meet.

The capital is the only city that doesn’t offer tertiary students discounted fare on public transport.
Source: 1 NEWS

Ali Leota has to travel from nearby Porirua and spends "roughly $90 a week" on buses.

"Cost of public transport outweighs other necessities and it makes basic living a challenge," Mr Leota told 1 News.

Auckland students get savings of 35 per cent or more, while Dunedin students get savings of about 33 per cent.

Victoria University Wellington Students Association President Rory Lenihan-Ikin says the cost is affecting students' ability to get to university to learn.

"By subsidising public transport for students in wellington as it is done in cities around the country and around the world, we can enable a whole lot more people to get into tertiary education," Mr Lenihan-Ikin said.

Now VUWSA has made a request to Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) to give students half price fares, with the GWRC indicating it will discuss the issue further as part of possible fare changes.

National MP Chris Bishop says that's too long and has started an online petition to accelerate the process.

"Had over 1000 people - not just students, but primarily students - from around the region having signed that petition and I'll be presenting that to the regional council as part of their annual plan deliberations," Mr Bishop said.

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