Opal card trick to get unlimited public transport in Sydney for $15/week

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Mattg

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As reported in SMH:

Opal card shuttle: Sydney Light Rail stops in Pyrmont help commuters beat the system

One of the well-known perks of the Opal card is that you only pay for the first 8 trips per week. According to this article, you can walk between Star City and Pyrmont light rail stations (200m apart) 8 times, tapping on and off each time, to rack up the 8 trips at a cost of $2.10 per journey (which eventually caps out at the daily cap of $15/day). After tapping on and off 8 times, travel should be free for the rest of the week!

Anyone here do this??

Unfortunately the Sydney airport station access fee doesn't count - you'll still have to pay it if going to/from an airport station. Though if you are prepared to walk a couple of kilometres for the weekly savings outlined above, you may consider walking from the domestic terminal to Mascot or from the international terminal to Wolli Creek to avoid the fee - both are pleasant ~20 minute walks.
 

kelvedon

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When the Opal card was first introduced a few colleagues at work would do the extra "trips" in their lunchtime. But I don't think travel between Wynyard and Town Hall counts as a trip, necessitating a longer trip to Central.
For me my lunchtime is more valuable.
 

kpc

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Easily fixed. Only 2 trips per day count towards the 8 trips which triggers free travel for the rest of the week:idea:
 

Alanslegal

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Two people in my team at work do it, they say they save $30 per week each. One person carries both cards, so they both do not need to double up on the tapping-on runs - and then they alternate who goes on these trips.

I don't have any need for an Opal Card however if I did have one, I'd definitely ask those two to join in their little strategy. $30 per week may be peanuts to some but it can be pretty worthwhile, it totals $1,560 per year which is almost enough money to buy points for a return business class ticket to Asia.
 

Timba-Jet

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When the Opal card was first introduced a few colleagues at work would do the extra "trips" in their lunchtime. But I don't think travel between Wynyard and Town Hall counts as a trip, necessitating a longer trip to Central.
For me my lunchtime is more valuable.

I do the lunchtime Wynyard-Townhall shuffle now & then. No need to go all the way to Central.
 

phily

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Simplest method for city workers would be to catch a bus for just one stop during one's lunch break. That'll get one's list of Journeys to 8 by lunchtime on Wednesday.

People here are chatting about Trips. It's Journeys that count, not Trips. A Trip is any ride using the Opal Card. It's Journeys that count towards the weekly "travel reward" after 8 Journeys. Two trips that are less than an hour apart are counted as 1 Journey. The requirement for a Journey is to leave an hour between Trips. That's why a lunchtime bus trip between just two bus stops in the city is so rewarding, especially for those who commute long distances.
 

mannej

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Health advocates should be all for this!
 

medhead

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Should be able to achieve this quicker travelling between airport stations, but at the cost of an additional gate fee.
 

DeKa

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As reported in SMH:

Opal card shuttle: Sydney Light Rail stops in Pyrmont help commuters beat the system

One of the well-known perks of the Opal card is that you only pay for the first 8 trips per week. According to this article, you can walk between Star City and Pyrmont light rail stations (200m apart) 8 times, tapping on and off each time, to rack up the 8 trips at a cost of $2.10 per journey (which eventually caps out at the daily cap of $15/day). After tapping on and off 8 times, travel should be free for the rest of the week!

If you read the article to the end, you'll see you need to do this walk/run/cycle between stops 27 times (assuming you already took one "journey" on public transport to work on Monday morning). This is because there's another rule nested in the system: whilst a journey is any trip separated by an hour, if you do four trips in quick succession, those 4 trips counts as one journey. You need to get the journey count to eight, so assuming you took one journey in the morning, you need another 7 journeys which means 28 tap on/tap offs achieved in 27 walks back and forth.

You could do it 8 times, but they'd have to be an hour apart.
 

medhead

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If you read the article to the end, you'll see you need to do this walk/run/cycle between stops 27 times (assuming you already took one "journey" on public transport to work on Monday morning). This is because there's another rule nested in the system: whilst a journey is any trip separated by an hour, if you do four trips in quick succession, those 4 trips counts as one journey. You need to get the journey count to eight, so assuming you took one journey in the morning, you need another 7 journeys which means 28 tap on/tap offs achieved in 27 walks back and forth.

You could do it 8 times, but they'd have to be an hour apart.

I think you could cut it down to 23 walks as there is also the journey home in the afternoon, which should be free under the daily travel cap.
 

Mattg

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If you read the article to the end, you'll see you need to do this walk/run/cycle between stops 27 times (assuming you already took one "journey" on public transport to work on Monday morning). This is because there's another rule nested in the system: whilst a journey is any trip separated by an hour, if you do four trips in quick succession, those 4 trips counts as one journey. You need to get the journey count to eight, so assuming you took one journey in the morning, you need another 7 journeys which means 28 tap on/tap offs achieved in 27 walks back and forth.

You could do it 8 times, but they'd have to be an hour apart.

I was wondering if I missed something. Yes, it would seem you're right.

So to clarify, individual "journeys" can be on any mode of transport, as long as they are at least one hour apart? Otherwise 4 trips without the hour gap make up a journey?

With the stops only 200m apart, this still seems very doable in under 2 hours. Good exercise too.

Also, my understanding is that only paid journeys count towards the weekly 8 trip max, so it will only count if you pay something for each trip, right?
 

JohnK

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Good to know about the 1 hour "journeys".

Got a couple of Opal cards recently for the Everyday Rewards promotion and my brother is kicking himself for not getting one earlier. His return trip to the library used to cost $4.80 and it now costs $2.10 using Opal card. It may not sound like a lot of money but do that a couple of times a week and it all adds up.
 

Moody

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I have an Opal card but only use it when on the train. For the Light Rail I save $1.80 by buying a cash return ticket. Is this the only example where Opal travel is not the cheapest option?
 

moa999

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I have an Opal card but only use it when on the train. For the Light Rail I save $1.80 by buying a cash return ticket. Is this the only example where Opal travel is not the cheapest option?

Cheaper for a few (definitely not all) light rail, a very limited number of bus journeys (eg Bondi Beach to Junction which is 2 sections but >3km) and for those who take <8 ferry or bus trips and can save more using TravelTen.

But generally Opal is the same or cheaper and with some optimizing can be much cheaper
 

ric_melb

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Still a great disappointment that Interstate Seniors can't yet get a Gold Opal card. Would be so convenient.
You can get a daily "Pensioners Excursion Fare" for $2.50, but need to get a supply of these at a Newsagent. Can't be bought for future use at train stations.
 
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moa999

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Still a great disappointment that Interstate Seniors can't yet get a Gold Opal card. Would be so convenient.
You can get a daily "Pensioners Excursion Fare" for $2.50, but need to get a supply of these at a Newsagent. Can't be bought for future use at train stations.

I suspect its because the interstate agencies can't be bothered doing the database api to enable Opal to validate the right to concession.

Much like only a few Unis, no TAFEs and no other schools issue the Student Concession.
 
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