Passengers will benefit from cheaper fares, made simpler through changes to contactless payments and smart ticketing designed to improve passenger experience.
As part of the smart ticketing rollout planned by the Department for Transport (DfT), Pay As You Go (PAYG) journeys are being introduced in a number of locations such as Potters Bar, Radlett and Brookmans Park; it is part of the drive to create a passenger-focused railway.
To achieve this, and to truly ensure the passenger experience is upgraded, fare trials and smart ticketing are key reforms.
A key element of the reforms is a new trial – backed by the DfT – that will boost confidence and flexibility in booking train tickets, which has the potential to save passengers money.
As of January 2020, LNER will commence trials on a fare system that is designed to make train travel simpler and clearer; on trial routes from London to Leeds, Newcastle and Edinburgh, return tickets will be removed and instead, passengers will be able to buy cheaper, single leg tickets.
This will mean prices are more in line with those half of the price of a return journey.
Again, the idea is to improve the overall passenger experience, and Grant Shapps, Transport Secretary, spoke about what the changes will provide.
“These announcements are vital for providing passengers with a more convenient, flexible and fairly priced experience.
“New ‘contactless’ PAYG journeys at Potters Bar, Radlett and Brookmans Park will help make travel cheaper, quicker and easier, with our smart ticketing roll-out also set to benefit passengers at Luton Airport and Welwyn Garden City later this year.
“We are also taking action to simplify fares as LNER begins single-leg fares trials next year.
“This will save many people money with substantially cheaper single tickets, boost customer confidence and ensure passengers up and down the country get the modern transport service they expect.”
Smart ticketing is fast becoming the main method of purchasing rail travel; many authorities are moving forward with plans and this is set to continue.