Cochabamba, one of the agricultural cities and is the fourth largest city in Bolivia, has a population of 1.3 million and the growth rate is 2.6% in 2019.  It is the most socially and economically progressive part of the country.  It leads to high demand for public transportation.

Overcharge problem

Micros bus – This is the most common means of transport in Cochabamba (also in La Paz). For the most part, the buses are models from the sixties most of the Dodge and the GMC brands.

When boarding, you must pay the driver the cost of the ticket (about USD20 cents) and to get off, you need to shout “Me quedo (I stay here)”, “Bajo (Down)” or “Esquina (at the corner)” about 50 meters ahead of your destination.

Mini-vans (trufis) – No set stops in order to get off.  Fares are 1.90 Bs., but most drivers don’t carry sufficient change and will charge you 2 Bs.

Business opportunity

Although Bolivia has a GDP per capita of USD 3671 in 2019, there is a social need for public transportation improvement especially in Cochabamba with 1.3 million population.

From the lesson from different countries, the improper financial management of public transportation can be improved by introducing an automatic fare collection (AFC) system.

With all these old micros and mini-vans, it is hard to finance an expensive AFC system.

However, with AFC, it must generate sufficient revenues for its financial sustainability, to continually service the ever-expanding social and economic demand.

The overcharged problem could also be solved.

The writer is a frequency traveler.  For more detail, please visit





Post Author: GCSharing

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