London Daily

Focus on the big picture.

Rail fares in England to rise by up to 5.9% from March

Rail fares in England to rise by up to 5.9% from March

Regulated rail fares in England will rise by up to 5.9% from March, the Department for Transport has announced.

The rise is being capped at a level well below inflation, "to help reduce the impact on passengers", the transport secretary said.

Labour called the hike - which is still the second highest on record - "a sick joke", while a watchdog said passengers were not getting value for money.

Fares will officially rise on 5 March 2023.

Before the Covid pandemic, fares were raised in January each year, based on the retail prices index (RPI) measure of inflation from the previous July.

Inflation is the rate at which prices rise, and the normal formula for fares is RPI plus 1%.

However, the government said that "for this year only" rail fare increases for 2023 would be capped at 5.9%, well below July's RPI figure of 12.3%.

Like last year, the government is also freezing fares for January and February, so that passengers have more time to buy tickets at the existing prices.

Transport Secretary Mark Harper said the rise represented a "fair balance" between passenger and taxpayer needs, and described the move as "the biggest ever government intervention in rail fares".

"It has been a difficult year and the impact of inflation is being felt across the UK economy. We do not want to add to the problem," he said.

However, the increase to fares will be the largest since a 6.2% jump in 2012, according to analysis of Office of Rail and Road data by the PA news agency.

Labour said average fares had risen by 58% since 2010, twice as fast as wages.

"This savage fare hike will be a sick joke for millions reliant on crumbling services," said shadow transport secretary Louise Haigh.

"People up and down this country are paying the price for 12 years of Tory failure."

Transport Focus warned that more needed to be done to improve the experience of passengers on the railways.

"After months of unreliable services and strike disruption, it's clear that too many passengers are not getting a value for money service," said its director, David Sidebottom.

"Capping fares below inflation and the delay until March is welcome and will go some way to easing the pain, but the need for reform of fares and ticketing in the longer-term must not be forgotten."

Regulated fares cover about 45% of fares, including season tickets on most commuter journeys, some off-peak return tickets on long distance journeys and anytime tickets around major cities.

The rise affects England, and mainline services from England into Wales.

It does not apply to Transport for Wales trains, but their changes tend to match those made across the border.

Fares for rail services in Northern Ireland are set by state-owned operator Translink, which does not use RPI. The Scottish government has not announced its plan for next year yet, though it has said that peak fares on the publicly-owned operator ScotRail will be suspended for six months.

The pandemic saw a steep drop in the number of train passengers, as more people worked from home, and numbers have remained well below pre-Covid levels.

Rail passengers have also faced disruption due to a wave of strikes, with further industrial action planned over Christmas and in early January.

Workers are demanding pay rises that reflect the soaring cost of living, while also trying to stop job cuts and changes to working conditions.


Related Articles

London Daily
UK Man Jailed for Non-Consensual Condom Removal
Reform UK Surpasses Conservatives in Historic Poll
US, Britain, Canada Accuse Russia of Interference in Moldova’s Election
Taylor Swift Fans Create Seismic Activity in Edinburgh
Sunak Aide Under Investigation for Election Bet
Labour Leader Starmer Focuses on Wealth Creation for Upcoming UK Elections
G7 to Use Frozen Russian Assets for $50 Billion Ukraine Aid
Anti-Israel Irish MEP Clare Daly LOST her seat in the EU Election
Johnson & Johnson Settles Talc Safety Claims for $700 Million
EU Urged to Welcome Skilled Russians to Weaken Putin
EU Elections Overview: Far-Right Gains and Major Political Shifts
Israel Rescues Four Hostages from Gaza
Emmanuel Macron Calls for Snap Election
Jordan Bardella: Young Far-Right Leader Poised for Future Political Influence in France
World's Oldest Privately Owned Book Auctioned for $3.8 Million
Animal Rights Activists Deface King Charles' Portrait in Protest
Dutch Military Intel Uncovers Extensive Chinese Cyber Espionage
Turkish Student Arrested for Using AI to Cheat in University Exam
Rise in Dengue and Other Mosquito-Borne Diseases in Europe Due to Climate Change
EU Elections Overview: Far-Right Gains and Major Political Shifts
Far-Right National Rally Dominates France's EU Vote
Macron Calls Snap Legislative Elections After Far-Right Victory
Far-Right Gains Significantly in EU Election
UK Job Market Shows Signs of Recovery
Orban’s Fidesz Party Wins Majority in Hungary’s EU Elections as New Challenger Emerges
Meloni's Far-Right Party Wins European Elections in Italy
Key Insights from the European Union Elections
European Union Elections and Rise of Far-Right Parties
England Loses Over 260,000 Social Rent Homes in a Decade
Campaigners Urge Government to Block Shein's FTSE Listing
First NHS AI-Run Physiotherapy Clinic Launches This Year
British TV Presenter Michael Mosley Found Dead on Greek Island
Ukrainian Forces Claims First Strike on Russia's Su-57 Fighter Jet
Macron Dissolves Parliament and Calls Snap Elections
Russia Adds Yulia Tymoshenko to Wanted List
UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron Tricked by Hoax Caller Posing as Former Ukrainian President
Kate Middleton's Absence from Colonel's Review Due to Chemotherapy
UK Foreign Secretary Deceived by Prank Video Call
Sunak Criticised Over D-Day Exit in BBC Debate
Rishi Sunak Apologizes for Leaving D-Day Commemoration Early
UK Woman Sentenced After Causing Fatal Crash While Sending Selfies
Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen Assaulted in Central Copenhagen
UN to Add Israel to Human Rights Blacklist
Germany and France Oppose EU Luxury Car Restrictions to Russia
Plus-Sized Miss Alabama Sara Milliken Responds to Online Critics
Nigel Farage's Return Boosts Support for Reform UK Party
Labour Party to Pledge Recognition of Palestinian State in Election Manifesto
British Paratroopers Greeted by French Customs After D-Day Anniversary Airdrop
UK Statistics Watchdog Chief Urges Sunak to Clarify Labour Tax Claim Source
UK Conservatives Promise to Restore Child Benefit for Higher Earners