Domenica, 04 Dicembre, 2016

Train fares to increase by 2.3% on average next year

Southern railway Rail fare to rise by average of 2.3 per cent next year
Remigio Civitarese | 02 Dicembre, 2016, 12:41

Train fares in Britain will go up by an average of 2.3% from 2 January next year, the rail industry has announced.

The average increase will take effect from January 2 across all types of National Rail ticket.

Mick Cash, general secretary of the RMT union, called the announcement "another kick in the teeth for British passengers" adding that travellers in the United Kingdom paid some of the highest fares in Europe "to travel on rammed out and unreliable trains".

"Once again the rip-off private train companies are laughing all the way to the bank as they whack up fares and axe staff in an all-out dash to maximise their profits".

Lianna Etkind of the Campaign for Better Transport condemned the hike, saying people were being "priced off the railway".

"Between 1995 and 2016 passengers have seen average fares increase by 23.5% and much more needs to be done by train operators and the government to give them a truly affordable railway".

The industry body, which represents train operators and Network Rail, acknowledged the move was likely to prove unpopular with already disgruntled customers, but insisted it was working to improve services and simplify fares.

"We understand how passengers feel when fares go up, and we know that in some places they haven't always got the service they pay for", said Paul Plummer, chief executive of the Rail Delivery Group.

'Around 97p in every pound passengers pay goes back into running and improving services.

"This money helps government to support the biggest investment in our railway since Victorian times".

According to Network Rail not all rail fares will increase, with some either remaining the same or reducing in price.

"We have always fairly balanced the cost of this investment between the taxpayer and the passenger".

Southern rail s eason ticket holders will be able to claim a refund for the equivalent of a month's travel as there has been major disruption to services in recent months.

More than 84,000 people with season tickets will be compensated for the delays, disruption and strikes on the company's routes.

"I think its's very bad news for passengers", she said.

But Southern passengers will benefit from a one-off compensation payment after enduring months of travel misery due to a stand off between bosses and the Rail, Maritime and Trasnsport (RMT) union.

From December 11 they will be eligible for a pay out for train delays over 15 minutes, rather than the current 30 minutes.

Fares previously went up 1.1pc this year, 2.2pc in January 2015 and 2.8pc in January 2014.

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