Thursday, 3 January 2013

Are British train fares the most expensive in Europe?

The annual increase in train fares was a major news item yesterday. Fares are rising this month by an average of 4.2% and the annual increase has been greater than the rate of inflation every year since 2004.

Naturally, passengers resent any fare increases, especially those that exceed inflation or pay rises. You also hear the claim, as the Guardian asserted, that “British train tickets are the most expensive in Europe”.

But is this true?

To find out, The Man in Seat Sixty-One compared British fares with those in France, Italy and Germany. The results certainly surprised him. And they might surprise you.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, but being able to get a £10 first-class train ticket from say London to Edinburgh (of course, valid only on specific trains) to visit your family once a year isn't much consolation when your annual season ticket has gone up yet again and this year it's £2,500. Sorry, plucking figures out of the air I know, but you get my point I hope. With all due respect to Mark Smith, aka Man in Seat 61, he's an aficionado of long-distance leisure train travel, but that perspective is not very relevant for those of us who have to use the trains to travel to and from work most days, and who find it increasingly difficult to make ends meet when the cost of their commute has yet again risen faster than their salary.


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