Market Research Shows Grim Times in Store for Rail Commuters

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25th June 2012 16:26 - Transport and Distribution

The Campaign for Better Transport (CBT) has conducted a new survey which reveals the happiness rankings for rail commuters in different cities across the UK.

Respondents from 11 cities were asked to give their satisfaction ratings for criteria covering train service affordability, overcrowding and punctuality.

In total, the Welsh capital of Cardiff was found to have the happiest commuters since they experience the most-affordable fares and comparatively low overcrowding, while those in Manchester are the most miserable due to higher fares relative to local wages.

After Cardiff, Newcastle upon Tyne came in second as the next happiest rail commuter location, followed by Nottingham, Birmingham and Leeds.

Thereafter, the list of commuter satisfaction or misery contained Liverpool, Leicester, Sheffield, Bristol, London and finally Manchester.

This survey coincides with the final week of the public consultation by the Government on rail fares - commuters will suffer a January 2013 rise in season tickets of RPI inflation plus 3%, with the figure dependent on the RPI rate in July this year.

Even though RPI inflation has fallen considerably in recent months, commuters in Britain could still have to fork out around 6% more for their season tickets in the New Year.

CBT Campaigns Director, Richard Hebditch, commented: "Surveys show that affordability is the most important issue for passengers, even more than punctuality or overcrowding, and our list shows just how much it affects their experience of rail travel.”

He added: "With rail fares already sky high across the country, and the Government set to raise fares by 3% above inflation next January, the chances of finding happiness on the daily commute are going to be slim."

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