A Queensland Government publicity campaign expected to give away up to 400,000 ‘go' transport smart cards loaded with $10 free credit has apparently backfired after it emerged that less than a third had been handed out.
The campaign aimed to lure users of paper tickets onto the electronic system before the paper system closes at the end of the year.
But a report in The Sydney Morning Herald today revealed that only 110,000 of the cards had been given away. The promotion was due to end within days.
The state opposition seized on the report with shadow transport minister Fiona Simpson labeling it a "sad state of affairs when [go card operator] Translink can't even give away free public transport fares".
"The Bligh Labor Government messed up the roll out of the go cards and now its delays have messed up the distribution of the free cards," Simpson said in a statement.
"How can [Transport] Minister [Rachel] Nolan say everything is okay when this Government can't even give these cards away?"
Simpson has been a critic of the smart card project, criticising it for card scanner malfunctions and distribution issues that made the cards hard to find.