Biggest Rail Fare Increases In Five Years
5 December 2017, 18:19
Rail passengers will be hit by the largest fares hike in five years next month across Cambridgeshire.
Average ticket prices across Britain will go up by 3.4% on January 2, industry body the Rail Delivery Group (RDG) said.
It is the sharpest rise since 2013, when fares increased by 3.9%.
Passenger watchdog Transport Focus compared the news to "a chill wind" blowing down platforms as many passengers' incomes are stagnating or falling.
Chief executive Anthony Smith said:
"While substantial, welcome investment in new trains and improved track and signals is continuing, passengers are still seeing the basic promises made by the rail industry broken on too many days."
One in nine trains (12%) failed to meet the rail industry's punctuality target in the past 12 months.
That means they arrived at terminating stations more than five minutes late for commuter services or 10 minutes late for long-distance journeys.
Another kick in the teeth
The Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union described the fares announcement as "another kick in the teeth" for passengers.
General secretary Mick Cash said: "For public sector workers and many others in our communities who have had their pay and benefits capped or frozen by this Government, these fare increases are another twist of the economic knife.
"The private train companies are laughing all the way to the bank."
So where IS the money going?
:: From 2018, new Thameslink services means passengers will be able to travel from Cambridge direct to the south coast. Passengers from Peterborough will also have an improved service with trains running direct to Gatwick Airport
:: Great Northern will double train capacity by adding 3,000 more seats from Cambridge to London King's Cross in the morning rush-hour
:: Weekend services between Cambridge and Stansted Airport have almost doubled with 31 extra trains running in each direction
:: Passengers from Peterborough will be able to reach Heathrow with a single change, and it'll avoid using the tube with a connection for all Thameslink trains with Crossrail (Elizabeth Line) at Farringdon
:: From 2020, Greater Anglia are replacing and expanding all their trains, with more than 1000 new carriages being delivered