Unions warn of rail fare rises


Inflation busting train fare rises will continue every year until 2019, a leading rail union warned today.

The Transport Salaried Staffs Association said the Government was "misleading" passengers by announcing that the annual fare rises in January 2013 and a year later will not be as high as planned.

The coalition had intended to allow train companies to raise the average price of regulated fares - which include season tickets - by RPI inflation plus 3% in the new year and in January 2014.

But Prime Minister David Cameron said that the rise for the next two years will be RPI plus 1%.

Manuel Cortes, general secretary of the TSSA, said: "Ministers are misleading passengers when they claim they will end inflation busting increases as soon as possible.

"Their own plans for the next seven years are based on passengers paying RPI plus 1% between 2014 and 2019. Passengers now contribute 60% towards the cost of running the railway - £6 billion a year.

"They will be soon be paying 75% under George Osborne's plans to squeeze them until the pips squeak. We don't need a crystal ball to see what is coming down the track.

"Fares will have risen by over 20% under this coalition and we can see more of the same if they are re-elected.

"A 4.2% increase will put the cost of a Corby season ticket to London city up from £6,800 to over £7,000. That eye watering figure shows that Tory privatisation of the railways has failed and it is passengers who are paying the price every day for that failure."