Rail passengers, commuters to take a leap in cost with new sms and mobile phone services


By Peter CuthbertsonThe Globe and MailStaff are getting new phones, cheap SMS service and an all-day low cost smst service on trains, buses and ferries.

The new services will cost $1.29 per day or $4.35 per month on a daily basis for passengers travelling in groups of four or more.

The high-speed service, which will start this week, will offer free calls, texts and messages to passengers who choose it.

The $1-per-day fee will apply to customers travelling on the new service.

The low-cost service, in partnership with the Canadian National Railway, will start on Thursday and runs every 30 minutes between Toronto and Vancouver.

The new service will cost only $4 per day.

“It is a significant change in pricing and I think it will allow people to take advantage of the service at an affordable price,” said Tristan Johnson, president of the Canadian Union of Public Employees.

“If you’re a regular customer, you probably know that it’s $1 a day for voice, $4 for SMS and $4 on mobile phones.”

Low cost serviceThe low cost service will be offered on all train lines except for the Toronto-Vancouver line.

The lower price is for the new low-price service.

In a news release, CUPE Canada said that while there are no plans to expand service, the low-priced service will help people who are on limited income or who are travelling on a low income.

The company said the service is designed to help families with limited financial resources.CUPE said the low cost services will be available on the following lines: The Blue Line from Toronto to Victoria, from Victoria to Windsor and from Windsor to Toronto. 

The Red Line from Kingston to Ottawa, from Ottawa to Calgary, from Calgary to Calgary and from Calgary airdrop to Edmonton. 

Transit Yellow Line service from Montreal to Winnipeg and from Winnipeg to Edmonton, the lowest cost service. 

Airdrop service from Edmonton to Edmonton for customers travelling from the Blue Line or from Montreal. 

Train service from the Ottawa-Edmonton to Edmonton-Ottawa service.

Train service to and from the Montreal-Halifax to Toronto service.

Service to and through the Calgary-Edison-Halton border crossing for customers flying direct from Calgary, Edmonton or Ottawa.

CupE is one of several unions representing low-income and transit workers in Canada.

Its members are members of the Railway Employees Union (ROU), Local 8, Local 8A and the Canadian Transportation Workers Union (CTWU).

The new service has been in the works for several years and will cost a total of $8.8 million.

CUPEs general secretary, Scott Macdonald, said it is good news for rail workers and the general public, adding that the new services are an important part of improving the lives of our community.

“We are committed to supporting our members and working to make them a more secure, productive workforce and we are thrilled that these services will help us all in that endeavour,” he said.

The train services will also be available in other cities and communities, including Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary and Montreal.

The new low cost mobile service will also come on line for those travelling between Toronto, Victoria, Windsor and Vancouver and will be on-demand, but not for those using it on the train.

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