Rail fares are still going up - the North gets hammered

traintrack Rail fares are going up by 2.5% in January and waxy old George Osborne has capped the ticket prices for the second year running, so it's slightly better news than the feared 3.5% - 5.5% increases.

He also announced that he was scrapping the ‘flex’ system where train companies could cheekily raise some fares by up to 2% above the permitted average.

It will cost the Government £100 million though, so they'll claw that back from you elsewhere no doubt.

As if pre-programmed, Mr Osborne trotted out his: "Support for hard-working taxpayers is at the heart of our long-term economic plan."

"It's only because we've taken difficult decisions on the public finances that we can afford to help families further."

However, rail passengers in the north of England are not going to be feeling very supported for their hard work and tax payments, as new rules mean that passengers in Greater Manchester and parts of Yorkshire won't be able to buy off-peak return tickets for travel between 4pm and 6.30pm. That basically means that, because they'll be buying 'peak' or 'anytime' tickets, it'll cost them 40-50% more than off-peak fares.

So, if you're catching a train from Rochdale to Wigan, it'll now cost you £11 when it would've cost you £4.20.

Martin Abrams of the Campaign for Better Transport isn't happy: "The DfT's extension of peak fares on Northern is part of an incoherent strategy to make existing passengers pay more for outdated services instead of investing in better quality rail for the future across the region."

1 comment

  • The S.
    Yet again, the poor excuse for the railway franchises (better trains and service for everyone!), is exposed as the money making exercise long suffering commuters have always suspected it was. Enough with the wi-fi on board (which you have to pay for) and thriving mini-towns masquerading as refurbished railway stations (where you always pay over the odds). Enough with the putting on a two carriage train when normally there would be nine carriages to get around the late train penalties. Enough with being charged substantially more than our European cousins for a lesser efficient and less clean service. The days of British Rail's slam shut ancient stock looks positively romantic now. (All views above are my own and are not necessarily endorsed by Bitter Wallet or any of their representatives. Bitter Wallet/HUKD network should not be help responsible for any of my views, rants or venting of my spleen). :-)

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