Watchdog criticises 'eye-watering' rail fares rise
A PASSENGER watchdog yesterday condemned inflation-busting rail fare increases as a "disappointing early Christmas present".
Tickets will go up by an average of 4.2 per cent on 2 January - nearly twice the current inflation rate of 2.3 per cent. Peak fares and season tickets will increase by 3.9 per cent and others by an average of 4.5 per cent.
However, as The Scotsman revealed yesterday, some fares will rise far more sharply, with many First ScotRail off-peak tickets going up by 10 per cent and some on GNER by up to 28 per cent.
Anthony Smith, of the Rail Passengers Council, said: "The rail industry is going to have to work hard to demonstrate that these rises represent value for money.
"Good value rail travel can be had - if you can get hold of the tickets in advance. But many walk-on fares are now at eye-watering levels."
But George Muir, director-general of the Association of Train Operating Companies, said: "We need the revenue from fares to pay for the big improvements being made to the railways.
"Our railways are the fastest growing in Europe and operators will continue to introduce new trains and better passenger facilities."
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Edinburgh
Thursday 20 June 2013
Temperature: 12 C to 21 C
Wind Speed: 7 mph
Wind direction: South east
Temperature: 11 C to 19 C
Wind Speed: 12 mph
Wind direction: West