Luxembourg is set to become the world’s first country to make all of its public transportation free. The newly re-elected prime minister Xavier Bettel and the coalition government have announced that they will lift all fares on trains, trams and buses next summer.
Landlocked by Belgium, Germany and France, Luxembourg has more than 400,000 commuters traveling in to work from neighboring countries and suffers from some of the worst traffic congestion in the world. It currently has the highest number of cars for its population in the European Union. A study suggested that drivers in the capital spent an average of 33 hours in traffic jams in 2016.
This year, the country started offering free transportation to everyone under the age of 20. Secondary school students have also been able to ride free shuttles between school and home.
As The Guardian reports, Luxembourg has increasingly shown a progressive attitude to transport. Commuters need only pay €2 (£1.78) for up to two hours of travel, which in a country of just 999 sq miles (2,590 sq km) covers almost all journeys. Beginning in 2020, all tickets will be abolished to save on the collection of fares and the policing of ticket purchases.
The policy of the new government that has caused the most debate, however, has been that of legalising the purchase, possession and consumption of cannabis for recreational use.