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MEP To Join Huntingdon Commuters Protesting At Highest Fares In Europe

Posted by Alex Mayer on 2nd January 2019

Huntingdon commuters face an unwelcome price hike on their return to work as their season tickets rise in price by another £168.

Cambridgeshire Labour MEP Alex Mayer and local campaigners was outside Huntingdon Railway Station to slam the 36 per cent price hike since 2010 and say that Britain needs to learn from other European railways.

Britain’s long suffering rail commuters will spend up to five times more of their income than their European counterparts as a result of this January’s price hike.

Figures show on average Brits spend 55p per mile travelling by rail. But it costs half that in Ireland at 27p and Belgium at 24p, while German passengers pay just 19p a mile.

In Germany it costs £3,955.92, (4395 euros) for a BahnCard100, an annual ticket that covers travel across their entire rail network, coming in at a staggering £1496 less than a Huntingdon to Kings Cross season ticket.

Since 2010 British rail fares have risen three times as fast as earnings even though commuter satisfaction has dipped to a 10-year low.

The new year increase will push the price of a Huntingdon to London season ticket to £5452 a year.

Alex Mayer MEP said: “Give commuters a break. Surely after the delays, cancellations and overcrowding on the railways last year, the government should not be allowing fares to increase faster than many people’s wages. We need to be encouraging people onto trains not putting obstacles in the way.

“It is time to learn from Europe. Startlingly it costs more for the 65 mile commute from Huntingdon to London than it does to travel across the whole German rail network.

“The Government could have used its power to cap regulated fares, instead they have let train companies off the hook and failed to stand up for passengers.

“Labour would bring our railways into public ownership, this would mean capped fairs, more reliable services and more investment. It’s time to put passengers first, not profits.”