14 August 2012 10:09
Commuters will be hit by a rise in season tickets by nearly 11% next year, with thousands of train users having to pay more than £5,000 a year when the new price rises come into effect.
The July retail prices index (RPI), which is used to determine the following January's annual rise for regulated rail fares including season and saver tickets, is expected to come in at 2.8% when Office for National Statistics are released. The average fare increase is calculated by adding 3% to RPI, meaning an average increase of nearly 6%, while some fares can go up by a further five percentage points as long as they are balanced by cuts on other tickets.
Elsewhere, the wider consumer prices index (CPI) rate of inflation is expected to remain flat at 2.4% between June and July, as lower food prices are offset by petrol price hikes and fewer discounts from retailers.
A CPI figure of 2.4% would still be its lowest level since November 2009, as inflation continues to fall from its peak of 5.2% in September, reflecting a slowdown in the global economy.
Stephen Joseph, chief executive of the Campaign for Better Transport, said: "If the Government sticks by its policy, rail fares will rise three times faster than salaries. With the economy flatlining this is untenable. The Government know they cannot continue to hit commuters."