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Anorak | Arriva Arriva! Speedy Rail Fares Set To Rise Again

Arriva Arriva! Speedy Rail Fares Set To Rise Again

by | 1st, June 2007

arriva1.jpgSMALL wonder more and more people are deciding to work from home.

With the Government doing all it can to discourage the humble commuter from travelling by car, it then expects them to pay through the nose for tardy and crowded train services.

Now rail passengers are facing the threat of even more big price hikes after two operators decided to substantially increase their fares.

In Wales, Arriva Trains have decided to raise their off-peak fares by over 30 per cent and South West Trains are targeting the off-peak traveller, hiking up their ticket prices by 20 per cent.

Surprisingly, these huge fare increases have not been challenged by the Office of Rail Regulation, leaving consumer groups and unions angry and fearful that other rail companies will follow suit and raise their prices.

Anthony Smith, chief executive of the consumer watchdog Passenger Focus, says: “It appears that off-peak passengers are left unprotected. It implies that 20 and 30 per cent rises are insufficient to trigger an investigation. If 30 per cent is not enough, it is hard to know what is.”

Smith also claims that passengers using Southern services into Victoria could be next in line for a massive ticket price hike.

However, the ORR, in responding to criticism over its inaction, retorts, “Just because a ticket price is raised significantly does not mean that it is excessive and an abuse under competition law.”

A 30 per cent increase isn’t excessive? I wonder how many ORR bigwigs travel to work by train.

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Posted: 1st, June 2007 | In: Money Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink