SO Stewart Aldcroft is now a tunnel Autopass convert (South China Morning Post, December 20).
Well done Stewart. The management and shareholders of the Cross Harbour Tunnel must be rubbing their hands with glee.
So if you use the two tunnels 50 times a month, that works out at less than 40 cents a trip. Or, as you point out, $20 a month.
Or, alternatively, another way of putting it is $240 a year that you are willing to pay for the Cross Harbour Tunnel Company to have to provide fewer men in their booths.
Of course, they will snap back that they had to pay a vast sum of money for the equipment with which to offer this service.
How much I wonder? Let us consider that perhaps they now have three thousand vehicle owners, (a gross underestimate I should think) all willing to pay $240 a year, each and every year, from now on.
At the end of one year, according to my rather rough arithmetic, that means that they have received $720,000 to cover the cost.
If they never get another person to join, still they will be receiving that amount every year.
Or are they, perhaps, going to cancel the charge once the equipment is paid for? Let me take issue with your statement that it is a pity there are not more lanes open for Autopass users.
This could well become a subtle form of blackmail as more lanes are opened, forcing those who do not wish to further fill the stockholders' pockets into longer and slower queues until eventually most will throw up their hands in despair and join you in your headlong flight to save five minutes.
Incidentally, Stewart, what do you do with all of those five minutes? Save them all up for the weekend and have a glorious couple of hours' spin in the New Territories? Courtesy of the Cross Harbour Tunnel? EAON R. JACKSON Kowloon