Sharp train fare rise ahead for some

RAIL passengers from Ipswich could see some fares more than double later this month as a result of the launch of new train company One.Differential pricing between Anglia and Great Eastern services is to be abolished from May 23.

RAIL passengers from Ipswich could see some fares more than double later this month as a result of the launch of new train company One.

Differential pricing between Anglia and Great Eastern services is to be abolished from May 23.

That means some of the most popular fares, especially with families, will become a thing of the past.

Passengers will then either have to pay more to travel to the capital – or get themselves more organised and book day trips well in advance.


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At present one of the most popular tickets to London for parents and children is the Family Travelcard.

It's valid only on Great Eastern trains and you have to take at least one child.

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The cost is £18 for an adult and £2 for a child. The fare includes London Transport zones 1-6, meaning the ticket can be used to travel anywhere from the Docklands to Hampton Court Palace.

That means two adults and two children can travel to London for a day out for £40. They don't have to book in advance.

So long as they arrive in London after 10am the only restriction is that they can only use Great Eastern trains for the journey between London and Ipswich.

This ticket will no longer be available from Ipswich – although it will be available from Manningtree and stations throughout Essex.

The cheapest "walk on" fare from Ipswich will be the Saver, which will cost £23.60. Child fares are half this cost – so for two adults and two children to travel to Liverpool Street will cost £70.80.

That does not include the Underground ticket. Add a day pass for zones one and two (£4.30 for adults, £2 for children) and the total bill adds up to £83.40 – more than double the Travelcard price.

There are much cheaper book in advance fares – from £15 for adults and £2 for accompanied children – but they have to be booked well in advance and there are only limited numbers available.

They also offer passengers little flexibility, if the weather is bad and you don't want to travel when the day arrives you can't get a refund.

And it is possible to knock the price down if you hold a family railcard which costs £20 for a year.

But even with that, using saver tickets would cost the family £52.80 rather than £40 – a 32pc increase.

The abolition of Great Eastern fares will also affect season ticket holders – GER season tickets from Ipswich are 8pc less than those available for any services and are facing the axe.

However the Anglia Commuter Club which offers even cheaper fares for regular mainline travellers has been adopted by One Railway.

"The current fare structure is confusing and there are some fares that are not economic, but after we have streamlined them we will not be getting any more revenue than we are at present," said One Anglia spokesman Peter Meades.

N What do you think of the rise in prices? Write in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

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