Transport business in Nairobi hits a low as travellers stay in town
By NAIROBI NEWS TEAM
Public Service Vehicles operators in Nairobi are experiencing low business during this festive season as most Nairobians have opted to stay in town for Christmas. A spot check by Nairobi News on Thursday also confirmed that transport business isn’t as brisk as in past years.
Unlike what has been a tradition during this time of the year when Nairobians leave town in droves for Christmas holidays, this year things seem to be different.
“In the past, at this time of the year, all the passenger collection points in the city are usually crowded with commuters heading upcountry. As you can see that is not the case this time,” a tout at Machakos bus terminus told Nairobi News.
Another PSV driver plying the Nairobi-Nanyuki route said: “I used to do almost four return trips a day by December 22, this time am still struggling to do two.”
Similarly, several matatus and buses have opted to marginally increase fares owing to the reduced number of commuters as compared to previous years when prices would triple.
“The heavy traffic in the city until this point, (December 24), means a majority of Nairobi residents are still here and they are not thinking of leaving town. But we can’t increase fares for town service because most people don’t seem have money,” a driver of a minibus belonging to Embassava Sacco said.
Not even the significant decrease in fuel prices this year has lured Kenyans to travel. Economists have, meanwhile, linked this scenario in the transport sector to the hard economic times that Kenyans are facing.
The “mad” travel period is expected to end around January 2, 2016 giving way to the opening of schools and other learning institutions.