Page last modified/checked: Saturday, 02 October, 2004

In this chapter of our website, we explore the metropolitan Neighbourhood fare structure which replaced the zonal based system from Sunday 13th November 1983 and was in situ for almost six years. Often, the neighbourhood system was referred to as "The Met(s) Ticketing System", however, this should NOT be confused with the latter term "MET TICKET" which was unrelated and years into the future.

The neighbourhood fare system remains as the single greatest upheaval that Melbourne's public transport ticketing arrangements have ever gone through - indeed, if the previous zone system was viewed as the cocoon, then the neighbourhoods were the metamorphosis. Long standing ticket dating and issuing methods/practises were gone overnight. At railway stations, the role of the Edmondson dating press was all but redundant. The MMTB's Gibson and Almex ticket machines had no place in the new system and were scrapped. Tram conductors continued to carry a kit and used ticket nippers which they would be even busier with dating the bulkier and larger pads of paper and card tickets they now carried. The metropolitan private bus operators should not be overlooked either, for they were now well and truly roped into the system. A very interesting observation has been made of their predicament in that by virtue of issuing and accepting tickets valid on all modes, they now acted merely as agents to the State Government.

The neighbourhood fare structure is perhaps an interesting system to review, as it lies in the middle ground between the trials with multi-modal tickets in the 1970's and the automation of Melbournes fare collection in the mid-1990's. The system represented the fruition of those 1970's ideas, and then itself, was responsible for concepts that the later AFC system had to be designed to accomodate. However, for ticket collectors and transport historians, neighbourhood tickets represented such a radical departure from what they preferred, most turned their backs on it. Little was saved - even less was recorded.

Therefore, it is from THIS POINT ON, commencing with this chapter on neighbourhood ticketing, that our website heads into unchartered ground and relies solely on our own efforts and observations of the past. The previous section of our website detailing the zonal system outlined the new Metropolitan Transit Authority, something the former Cain Labor government gave priority in establishing. Now there was a single controlling body for Melbourne's public transport. The next step was to develop a single ticket system to fit the picture.

  This chapter details exactly what this was.....