Rail fares to be hiked up by 2.7 per cent in the New Year

Passengers across the UK are being advised to expect to see an increase in rail fares from as early as January 2nd.

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According to reports fares are expect to rise by 2.7 per cent and some long-distance commuters could also see the annual cost of getting to work increase by more than £100.

Paul Plummer, chief executive of industry body the Rail Delivery Group – which published details of the latest increase, said: “We understand that no-one wants to pay more to travel, which is why train companies have for the third year in a row held the average fare increases below inflation while still investing to improve journeys.

“Passengers will benefit from 1,000 extra, improved train carriages and over 1,000 extra weekly services in 2020.

“The industry will continue to push for changes to fares regulations to enable a better range of affordable, mix and match fares and reduced overcrowding on some of the busiest routes.”

However, Mick Cash, general secretary of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union, said passengers are being “fleeced thousands of pounds every year for the privilege of travelling in crowded, unreliable services”.

Only 47 per cent of passengers have said that they are satisfied with the value for money of train tickets, according to the latest survey by watchdog Transport Focus.

Office of Rail and Road figures show that since January 1995 – around the time the network was privatised – average fares have increased in real terms by 21 per cent.

And, Network Rail data shows that only 65 per cent of trains arrived at their scheduled station stops within one minute of the timetable in the past 12 months.

The increase in around 45 per cent of fares, including season tickets, is regulated by the UK, Scottish and Welsh governments.

This is predominantly capped at July’s RPI inflation figure, which was 2.8 per cent, whilst other fare increases will be decided by train companies..

Examples of potential season ticket increases include:

– Brighton to London: Increase of £125 to £4,581

– Gloucester to Birmingham: Increase of £119 to £4,357

– Barrow-in-Furness to Preston: Increase of £117 to £4,285

– Edinburgh to Glasgow: Increase of £114 to £4,198

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