30.06.2015_bus_de_lisbonne_portugal_alain_gavillet_flickr_cc_by_2.0The government of Portugal is making € 35 million available to subsidise public transport for people on lower incomes across the country.

Access to the scheme, called Social +, will be assessed on the grounds of household income and will come into force in August. It applies to all Portuguese cities and towns except those in the metropolitan areas of Lisbon and Porto, the two largest cities.

Portuguese local authorities will conduct evaluations to see how many people in their area are eligible for the subsidy, and what kinds of transport they usually access. People living in rural areas often require long distance transport options, while city-dwellers typically travel shorter distances.
The subsidy scheme has been made possible by savings achieved elsewhere in the transport budget. Sérgio Monteiro, Portugal’s Secretary of State for Transport, said: ‘While we saved hundreds of thousands of euros from transport in Lisbon and Porto, we were creating the conditions to extend support to transport [elsewhere], and to make the system fairer.’