Southeastern rail commuter 'would rather cycle through hurricane' than pay train fare hikes
RAIL passengers in the south-east are reeling once again at a hike of season ticket prices rise that will see fees rising by up to £124.
The government has told Southeastern, with all other UK rail companies, they can raise their prices by 4.2%. But some areas are being hit harder than others.
As of January 1, season ticket commuters between Bexley and London will pay £1,800 which is a rise of £72.
London to Bexleyheath commuters will pay £1,576, an increase of £60.
Commuters between Bromley South and London will pay £1575 which is a rise of £60.
From Orpington and London will be £72 more expensive, with £1,800 a ticket.
London to Gravesend commuters will pay £3,084, an increase of £124.
Commuters between Dartford and London can expect to pay £88 more, at £1,212 a ticket.
Crayford to London commuters will pay £1,800 which is a rise of £72.
Scott Mullins, of Herbert Road, Bromley, regularly commutes to London Victoria.
The 28-year-old said: "Fat cats at Southeastern seem more intent than ever on lining their own pockets by squeezing every last penny out of struggling commuters.
"Rather than stump up for another season ticket I’m planning on splashing out on a set of bike lights.
"I’d rather cycle to work in a hurricane than let Southeastern get their grubby hands on any more of my money.
"These train companies have got their loyal customers over a barrel and are spanking their backsides for no good reason. Shame on them."
Brian Milligan, a 49-year-old commuter from Swanscombe to Lewisham, said: "For me personally it’s a bloody rip off, it’s absolutely outrageous.
"Commuters in the south-east seem to be penalised a lot more than others.
"They say the money will improve services but it doesn’t feel like you are getting anything different. They did the same thing a couple years ago.
"I got a train the other day that was three minutes late, only half the length it normally was and had half its seats missing.
"Where is the ceiling? I just don’t think it’s going to stop. It just doesn’t feel right and I don’t think it’s fair at all.
"They say on one hand they are encouraging people to use public transport but on the other hand it can be cheaper to drive."
The 4.2% rise includes inflation plus a 1% rise on top.
A spokeswoman from Southeastern said: "“Nobody likes to see prices rise but there are only two sources of funding for the railways, the general taxpayer and the fare payer.
"It is the government, not train companies, that decides how much season tickets should rise on average each year.
"Ministers have been seeking to cut the contribution from taxpayers towards the running costs of the railway and increase the share that comes from passengers."