The Campaign for Better Transport reports today that the Government and train companies are failing part time and flexible workers. They say that their research has shown 20 other European countries had flexible ticketing that made commuting more affordable for part time workers. They have launched a petition for a better deal.
There are some great examples of what can be done from their research:
- Northern Ireland Railways have a “3 day select ticket” which provides an option to choose 3 specific days of travel between two stations within a seven day period and 16% off the cost of three Day Return tickets.
- Poland Railways have a “subscription ticket” valid for 7 return trips on a specified route within 3 months. It is priced at the cost of 5 return trips, so there is a 29% discount. You do not have to specify dates in advance; you just re-validate the ticket for each journey.
- Belgian Railways have a “10-journey card“, designed for those who occasionally travel by the same route, but not frequently enough to get a season ticket. It covers 10 single journey within a year from issue. There’s no discount, but you do not have to specify in advance which dates – you just fill in the date as you use each journey.
We strongly support the development of better options for part-time commuters and flexible workers from the Sevenoaks area. It’s disappointing that the franchise the Department for Transport have given to Southeastern neither requires nor incentivises this sort of innovation.