Rail operators should be given incentives to cut fares



Eurostar

Eurostar

The transport secretary has urged rail operators to be given more incentives to cut their costs, leading to lower fares for all, and a break for everyone’s credit and debit cards.

Phillip Hammond urged train companies to change their ridiculous fare system, that sees empty trains leaving just minutes before extremely busy ones, because the empty train falls a minute into the peak ticket area.

Hammond did stop himself from supporting fellow Tory MP, Penny Moduant, who called for the different train franchises to be given instructions on how to run their trains, with set criteria for numbers of seats, and standing room.

Penny also claimed that certain operators were running sub-urban trains on mainline routes, and called for franchises not providing a certain level of comfort to have their franchises revoked.

Mr Hammond explained that despite the limited capacity, commuters who live close into London didn’t want the seats pulled out of their trains to make more room for standing.

He said in Commons, “The key thing is that we have to drive down the cost of our railway. We have to make our railways more efficient, we have to close the productivity gap with competitive railways in Europe in order to relieve the pressure both on the taxpayer and on the fare payer.

“The changed franchise specifications will give train operators incentives to drive down costs, something which frankly they have not been incentivised to do under the current system.”

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