Commuter headache as UK train fares set to rise three times faster than wages

Commuters face spending over a third of their take-home pay on rail fares after another punishing price hike.

A 3.2 per cent rise in season tickets, announced last Friday, capped a year of delays, cancellations and other misery.

Fares are rising around three times faster than wages and the cost of daily long-distance commutes is increasingly eating into income.

And it is workers living outside London and the south- east who are worst hit, our analysis reveals.

In Swindon, Wilts, where the average salary is £23,478 a year, a yearly season ticket to London will jump from £8,740 to £9,020 when the price rises take effect on January 2.

The journey from Norwich to London will rise from £8,164 to £8,425.

The average annual salary in the Norfolk city is £20,256.

People travelling from Exeter to Bristol will see season tickets rise from £5,260 to £5,429, a big chunk of their £23,329 average salary.

Anyone going regularly to Cambridge from Birmingham, where the average wage is £24,036, will now pay £8,652 instead of £8,384.

Darren Shirley of the Campaign for Better Transport, urging an end to rises, said: “Passengers have endured enough already.”

Shadow transport secretary Andy McDonald called it another example of “regional inequality”.

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