Estonia’s capital gives residents free rides
Looking for a free ride? Go live in Tallinn.
Estonia’s capital became the world’s first to introduce free public transport for all of its residents. All that’s required is a transit pass showing you’re a registered Tallinner — and the city’s buses, streetcars and trams are yours for free.
"I live on a tight budget since I don’t have too much work right now," said Mare Tulp, who recently registered as a Tallinn resident. "I need to save money wherever I can, so I’m very happy with the free public transit scheme. This is a good thing for the common person."
Three months after launching the initiative, city officials are hailing the experiment as a success, though skeptics call it an expensive, populist trick ahead of local elections.
The free-ride scheme is the brainchild of Mayor Edgar Savisaar, who wants to reduce congestion and pollution while alleviating expenses for the city’s poor.