Humza Yousaf, Via SNP

Humza Yousaf announces Scotland peak rail fares to be removed in a six-month trial

The Scottish First Minister, Humza Yousaf, officially unveiled plans to remove peak fares for rail travel across ScotRail services, coming as a six-month trial that is set to begin this coming October.

The project comes as part of the vision to improve the social value of Scotland’s rail network, with Mr Yousaf stating his ambition to “make our public transport system more accessible [and] we’ll make it more affordable.”

This pilot scheme will be utilised to assess the overall fares across the Scottish rail network, with the potential for permanent changes to be implemented, dependant upon the trial results.

Addressing MSPs in Holyrood this Tuesday, Mr Yousaf said:

"I can confirm today that the six-month pilot to remove peak-time fares from ScotRail services will start in October of this year.

"The evidence from this pilot - and our wider fair fares review - will allow us to bring forward further targeted measures, from next year onwards, to ensure that the costs of transport are more fairly shared."

The trial will see prices of some rail tickets cut in half, such as fares between Edinburgh and Glasgow coming down from the heights of £27.60 at peak times, down to £14.20.

This mass reduction in price will come at an important time, as it will provide people with more affordable travel as most of the UK is still combatting the ongoing inflation and cost of living crisis.

As the rail sector is still in recovery from the recent pandemic lockdown schemes, this measure to attract people back to rail will also majorly benefit the sector as returning passenger numbers will mean a return for strong and consistent revenue generation.

Whilst providing people with affordable travel is great for passenger care and improving their experience using rail travel, encouraging more people to use trains as their primary form of transport will also be transformative to cutting carbon throughout the UK, aiding in the ongoing fight to achieve the Government’s ambition to achieve Net Zero.

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