Rail passengers face biggest fare rise in five years

RAIL passengers will face the largest fares rise in five years next month.

Ticket prices will go up by an average of 3.4 per cent from January 2, the Rail Delivery Group announced.

The increase, the biggest since 2013, covers regulated fares including season tickets and unregulated fares, such as off-peak leisure tickets.

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Anthony Smith, chief executive of passenger watchdog Transport Focus, said the rise was a “chill wind”.

He added: “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.

“Passengers’ immediate priorities are clear: a more reliable railway, better handling of disruption and better value for money.”

The Rail Delivery Group admitted it was a “significant” rise, but said that more than 97 per cent of fare income went back into improving and running the railway.

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