Commuter rail fares to rise by 4.9% in March 2024

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
London Assembly Labour Transport spokesperson, Elly Baker AM described the hike as a “slap in the face” for Londoners who are already struggling with the cost of living crisis.

Commuter rail fares in England will increase by 4.9% from March 2024, the Department for Transport has announced.

The increase is below the 9% July’s retail price index (RPI) figure on which fare increases are historically based and will be delayed from January when hikes usually come into force.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The rise is announced after passengers have faced disruption to services due to strikes by rail workers over the past 18 months.

London Assembly Labour Transport spokesperson, Elly Baker AM described the hike as a “slap in the face” for Londoners who are already struggling with the cost of living crisis.

“Any ticket price rise means it will be harder for workers to get to their jobs, kids to get to school and to connect families and communities across the city,” said Baker.

"The government should invest in public transport and keep fares low to encourage post-pandemic recovery, as we are seeing in many other cities abroad.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"I have called on the government to follow the mayor of London's pre-pandemic example and freeze all fares but it appears that they would rather squeeze Londoners’ incomes more than properly fund our transport network.”

Rail fares in England will increase by 4.9% in March 2024Rail fares in England will increase by 4.9% in March 2024
Rail fares in England will increase by 4.9% in March 2024 | Getty Images

While London TravelWatch, the capital's travel watchdog, said the increase was "unwelcome" and warned passengers would not be getting value for money.

A TravelWatch spokesman said: "These new rail fares will see already hard-pressed passengers hit with another unwelcome price hike.

"Reform to rail fares and ticketing could not be more urgent now. Government needs to set out an alternative vision that makes public transport appealing - this includes affordable fares, rolling out contactless payment options, and improving train service punctuality so passengers are getting real value-for-money."

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The hike applies to regulated fares which include most season tickets, travelcards, some off-peak returns, and anytime tickets around major cities. Currently around 45% of tickets are regulated by the government.

The fare increases are set to begin on March 3 2024.

Transport Secretary, Mark Harper, said: “Having met our target of halving inflation across the economy, this is a significant intervention by the government to cap the increase in rail fares below last year’s rise.  

“Changed working patterns after the pandemic means that our railways are still losing money and require significant subsidies, so this rise strikes a balance to keep our railways running, while not overburdening passengers.

“We remain committed to supporting the rail sector reform outdated working practices to help put it on a sustainable financial footing.”

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.