Demand for rail travel back to 70% of pre-pandemic levels

Rail has recovered from the coronavirus crisis more slowly than road traffic and buses.

Neil Lancefield
Wednesday 03 November 2021 16:41
Demand for weekday rail travel has recovered to 70% of normal levels for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic began (Victoria Jones/PA)
Demand for weekday rail travel has recovered to 70% of normal levels for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic began (Victoria Jones/PA)

Demand for weekday rail travel has recovered to 70% of normal levels for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic began.

New Department for Transport figures show that the number of journeys made on Britain’s railways was at that level every day between Tuesday October 12 and Friday October 15.

The recovery of rail travel has been slower than that of road traffic and buses.

There is still a way to go before numbers are back to pre-Covid levels

Rail Delivery Group

Latest figures show weekday car use is at around 92% of normal levels, with bus travel outside London at approximately 75%.

A spokeswoman for industry body the Rail Delivery Group said: “The railway is crucial to Britain’s recovery, so it’s encouraging to see more people taking the train, with every journey helping to tackle congestion and clean up the air in towns and cities while boosting local businesses and the national economy.

“Leisure journeys in particular are recovering strongly, but there is still a way to go before numbers are back to pre-Covid levels.

“To help passengers travel with confidence, train companies are continuing with effective ventilation and extra cleaning, along with providing value for commuters with the new flexi season tickets.”

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