The consultation is focusing on three key areas:
- What a pay-as-you-go travel area is, and how it would work in general
- Where a pay-as-you-go travel area could cover
- The changes that could be made within the area
The deadline is 1 May 2019 and the South East is one of the key geographical areas being looked at in this consultation.
BACKGROUND TO THIS SURVEY
A recent consultation with passengers about rail fares, the biggest ever carried out and delivered by the Rail Delivery Group in partnership with the independent passenger watchdog Transport Focus, has found widespread agreement for change:
- 8 out of 10 wanted the fares system overhauled
- 9 out of 10 wanted smart or electronic tickets across the whole network
- 8 out of 10 wanted fares which encourage travel during quiet periods when there are empty seats
In all, nearly 20,000 people from across Britain took part – with additional input from over 60 umbrella organisations representing over 300,000 other organisations, authorities and individuals, including businesses, accessibility groups and local authorities.
The proposals in the consultation include:
- ‘Easier fares for all’: enabling a transparent, simpler to understand fares system (‘tap-in, tap-out’) across the country
- ‘Best fare guarantee’ of getting the cheapest fare for your journey and hassle-free refunds
- Automatic delay repay payments, enabling train operators to automate compensation payments when passengers are eligible.
- Fares that better reflect modern ways of working: helping passengers get more appropriate tickets for flexible working, with fewer and fewer people now travelling the same journey to and from work, five days a week.
- New types of fares could give season ticket holders with flexible needs the opportunity to save money by travelling at quieter times, incentivising more off-peak travel and helping reduce peak-time crowding.