Business, News

Rail fares rise twice as fast as pay over the past seven years (and are set to go up another 4% in 2018) –

The Government hikes prices every January in line with July’s Retail Price Index (RPI) measure of inflation, which will be announced by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) on Tuesday.

At the moment an off-peak return from London to Bath costs £63.50. After January’s expected price rise of 3.9 per cent it would cost £65.98.

Standard fares have shot up 32 per cent in the last eight years, while average weekly earnings increased by just 16 per cent.

‘Meanwhile it’s pay day for private rail companies, whose owners gifted themselves nearly a quarter billion in dividends last year.

Separate research claims that UK commuters spend up to six times as much of their salary on rail fares as other European passengers.

An annual season ticket for a passenger travelling from Chelmsford to London now costs £4,000 – a fifth of a new nurse or police officer’s salary, the Rail, Maritime and Transport Union (RMT) claim.

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