Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Britain's first £1000 train fare

From The Daily Mail:

Britain's first £1,000 rail fare has caused a fresh row over the rising costs of train travel.
A first-class 'walk-on' return ticket from Newquay, Cornwall, to Kyle of Lochalsh, Scotland, now costs a staggering £1,002 - making it the first time passengers have been asked to pay such a high price for a UK journey since rail services began in 1825.
The record-breaking fare emerged in a survey by rail expert Barry Doe. It shows that since privatisation in the mid-Nineties fares for long-distance trips have soared by up to three times inflation.
A first-class 'walk-on' return from London to Manchester was £134 in 1995, the last year British Rail set all fares, but has trebled to £387.
Even inter-city fares 'capped' by legislation put in place at privatisation have risen far more than inflation.
In 1995 the cheapest 'walk-on' return to Plymouth was £39, but is now £72. This is a rise of 85 per cent compared with inflation of 45 per cent over the same period.
Rail enthusiast Michael Palin, whose first TV travelogue was a train trip to Kyle of Lochalsh, said: 'The fare is staggering. Fares do seem to be rising and complicated. If you're good on the internet you can spend a couple of hours and get good deals.
'If you're not so good you can end up paying £1,000. This is what happens in a free-market economy where railways have been privatised. I don't think this is a journey I'll be doing.'

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