Commuters crushed by fare hikes

Rebecca Rutt's picture

Travelling around the country has turned into a bit of a luxury and with news this week that rail fares could shoot up by 30% for off-peak fares in the next three years, it looks like buying a bike might be a good alternative.

Fares are already excessively expensive for UK travellers and it’s disgraceful how much people have to pay just to get from A-Z.

I agree with Alice Ridley, spokesperson for the Campaign for Better Transport, who says passengers are already paying too much, what with the effects of inflation, and an overly complex ticketing system.

If you book way in advance you can get some very cheap tickets. I recently booked a return trip to Cardiff, 12 weeks before, and got the whole thing for £15. But it’s rare for me to be so organised and to know what I’ll be doing three months before. If I did the same journey with an anytime return ticket on the day it would cost £124.75 – and that’s with a 16-25 rail card which gives 30% off the fare.

With the London 2012 Olympics coming up, it’s time the government did something about the ridiculous fees and rubbish service we get. It’s bad enough in London with non-Oyster journeys costing £4.10 a trip, but there’s no excuse for yet more hikes in transport costs.

And what really makes me mad is the service we’re forking out for. The Waterloo to Basingstoke commute is not only expensive but very poor. The trains are over crowded, most of the journey is spent sitting on the floor, it’s vastly over-priced and there is no other alternative.

It’s not acceptable we’re having to pay such high fees to travel and makes a mockery of the government trying to make us more environmentally conscious. Most of my friends will drive instead of getting the train if they’re going long distance because it usually always works out cheaper.  This is not the way it should be.

Your Comments

Increasing fares is being used as an easy target. The fundamentals of the industry need addressing - Network rail and the scale of it's debt, and the government subsidies it receives. The length of franchises need increasing so that that train operating companies can invest in additional rolling stock. We need to be encouraging further growth in the use of rail travel not the opposite.

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