At a time when Liberal Democrats have been called out for backing off their pledge to end above inflation pricing on railway fairs, consumer advocate group Which? is campaigning for clearer pricing information. The group claims that unclear pricing structure is leading many riders to pay more than necessary for train tickets in the UK.
It appears as if the problem stems from websites selling tickets that have a clear lack of information on pricing. According to the consumer advocate group, most travellers now purchase their tickets online which is creating a certain degree of confusion. After being surveyed, only 1% actually understood all the parts of the tickets on all the main types of tickets. This, in itself, can lead to buying more expensive tickets than necessary.
For example, 61% of those surveyed did not know that Advance tickets are non-refundable and an amazing 48% of people questioned did not know that Advance tickets are only good on specific trains. As well, if the traveller should miss the train, the ticket becomes null and void which requires purchase of a new ticket. This information is not made clear and if it is on the ticket-selling websites it is not in an obvious location easy to spot.
Even the costlier Anytime tickets for the return journey had a high amount of uncertainty. Although these tickets have the fewest restriction, three-fourths of those surveyed did not realise they could make the outbound trip within just five days whilst more than half did not realise they could return at any time within a month of having purchased the ticket.
In the end it boils down to the fact that those travelling on the rails are known to be in a higher income bracket because of the inflation-busting pricing policy that has prices skyrocketing and unaffordable to the average wage earner.