SunRail prepares for end of free trial service

FDOT will monitor if ticket purchases match riders' route

More than 10,000 people are riding SunRail every day during the free ride week, but what will happen on Monday when normal ticket sales resume?

Riders will start to hit the kiosks and purchase tickets on Monday. 

One-way tickets cost $2 and $3.75 round-trip within the same county. There are also passes for all day, all week and all month.

But with the high number of riders, the Florida Department of Transportation will have to monitor if riders are getting off at the correct stops they paid for.

The Florida Department of Transportation said conductors will spot check for tickets, so when a train is packed it's likely every passenger won't be checked.

FDOT said if they find passengers that purchased a one-way ticket and continued past their stop, they could face a $50 fine.

Steve Olson with the FDOT said the two-week trial has also taught them how to better handle capacity and resulted with the rail adding another 900-passenger train.

Businesses benefit from SunRail

The Winter Park SunRail station has brought more business to Park Avenue and one restaurant owner says he has seen a double-digit increase in business since the service started.

Richard Pannullo has been in the business for 22 years and says since the SunRail started, his lunch business at his restaurant, Pannullo's, increased 40 percent.

He knows it may not continue when people have to pay to ride starting Monday, but he says he's optimistic.

Pannullo said he hopes to hold on to 10 to 15 percent of that increase when the paying service starts Monday.

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