Fares, rail policy and DfT news

30.11.18

‘Another kick in the teeth’: Rail fares to rise by 3.1% in New Year

Rail fares will rise by an average of 3.1% in January, the Rail Delivery Group has confirmed today.

The new fares, coming into effect from 2 January next year, will add around £100 onto the cost of many season tickets.

The fares are set at July’s RPI, which was 3.2%, and train companies have today confirmed an average increase of 3.1%. This will mean another £148 on the cost of a season ticket from Brighton to London, for example, and £100 for commuters traveling from Manchester to Liverpool.

PA Graphics PA Graphics press Association

This fare rise follows the biggest fare increase in five years last January, when prices rose by 3.4%, prompting backlash from unions and the Opposition.

Metro mayors called for a price freeze in the north in September as a response to the chaotic new timetables introduced in May, although Grayling refused to comment on the freeze when asked in Parliament last week. It is also unlikely that he would back such a measure given his criticism of Sadiq Khan’s fare freeze in London, which the government argues has led to its current financial difficulties and helped contribute to Crossrail’s delay.

The independent watchdog Transport Focus remarked that passengers now spend more than £10bn a year on the rail industry alongside government investment, “so the rail industry cannot be short of funding.”

Its chief executive said: “Many passengers, still reeling from summer timetable chaos and frustrated by ‘autumn’ disruption, won’t believe fares are going up again! Until day-to-day reliability returns – with fewer significant delays and cancellations – passenger trust won’t begin to recover.”

The organisation’s survey showed that just 45% of passengers were satisfied with the value of their train tickets, and the watchdog once again called for fares to change in line with the allegedly fairer Consumer Prices Index instead of the “discredited Retail Price Index.”

But the Rail Delivery Group’s chief executive Paul Plummer defended the rise, and reaffirmed his promise that 98p of every pound will go into the day-to-day running of the railway and investment into new rolling stock, services, and infrastructure upgrades.

He added: “Nobody wants to pay more to travel, especially those who experienced significant disruption earlier this year.

“Money from fares is underpinning the improvements to the railway that passengers want and which ultimately help boost the wider economy. That means more seats, extra services and better connections right across the country.”

The RMT, however, slammed the fare hike, calling it “another kick in the teeth for passengers on Britain’s rip-off privatised railways,” and accused Grayling of “political cowardice” and of making a “cynical attempt to blame this rise on frontline rail staff.”

Image credit -  Ben Birchall/PA Wire/PA Images + PA Graphics

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

related

rail technology magazine tv

more videos >

latest rail news

Rail North Partnership review sets out recommendations

19/07/2019Rail North Partnership review sets out recommendations

A review of the Rail North Partnership, headed by Leeds Council leader cllr Judith Blake and rail minister Andrew Jones, has set out recommendati... more >
TfL announces 4G for London Underground in 2020

19/07/2019TfL announces 4G for London Underground in 2020

Transport for London (TfL) have announced that 4G will be available on parts of the London Underground from March 2020. The eastern half of ... more >
Study of light rail finds Manchester Metrolink one of best in the world

19/07/2019Study of light rail finds Manchester Metrolink one of best in the world

An international study of light rail systems has identified Metrolink as one of the best in the world. The system was rated as fifth best in... more >

editor's comment

23/01/2018Out with the old...

Despite a few disappointing policy announcements, especially for the electrification aficionados amongst us, 2017 was, like Darren Caplan writes on page 20, a year generally marked by positive news for the rail industry. We polished off the iconic Ordsall Chord (p32), hit some solid milestones on Thameslink (p40), progressed on ambitious rolling stock orders (p16), and finally started moving forward on HS2 (p14) ‒ paving the way for a New Ye... read more >

last word

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

This summer, Arriva Group's CrossCountry and the Scout Association joined to launch a new partnership to promote rail safety among young people. Chris Leech MBE, business community manager at the... more > more last word articles >

'the sleepers' daily blog

Apprentice to Co-leading the Rail Sector Deal

05/06/2019Apprentice to Co-leading the Rail Sector Deal

In a series of Q&A’s with key speakers on the run up to TransCityRail Midlands, we caught up with TransCityRail panellist and Amey’s commercial account director, Anna Delvecchio, for her insight into what the Rail Sector Deal means for the rail industry and its supply chain. Anna started her career as an apprentice at the age o... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >

comment

The challenge of completing Crossrail

05/07/2019The challenge of completing Crossrail

With a new plan now in place to deliver Crossrail, Hedley Ayres, National Audit Office manager, major projects and programmes, takes a look at ho... more >
Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

04/07/2019Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

The move to decarbonise the rail network involves shifting to cleaner modes of traction by 2050. David Clarke, technical director at the Railway ... more >
Sunshine future beckons for South Wales Railways, says 10:10 Climate Action’s Leo Murray

02/07/2019Sunshine future beckons for South Wales Railways, says 10:10 Climate Action’s Leo Murray

Smart electrification is the way to boost clean energy resources, argues Leo Murray, director at 10:10 Climate Action. Contractors are clear... more >
Ambition doesn’t have to be expensive, says Midland Connect's Maria Machancoses

02/07/2019Ambition doesn’t have to be expensive, says Midland Connect's Maria Machancoses

The TCR Midlands conference is only days away and tickets are going fast for the sector event of the year at the Vox Conference Centre in Birming... more >

rail industry focus

View all News

interviews

Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

24/06/2019Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

By Ewan Quayle, Rail Technology Magazine Reporter Andrew Haines, the Chief Executive of Network Rail, has told the Today programme on R... more >