MINISTERS are being urged to dish out cut-price rail tickets to get passengers back on the railways.
Watchdogs want deals to mimic Rishi Sunak’s “Eat Out To Help Out”.
And they are also pushing for a “carnet” scheme, which offers discounts for multiple journeys, to encourage rail travel following the Covid pandemic.
Anthony Smith, chief executive of independent watchdog Transport Focus, said: “Our research tells us almost two in three former rail commuters expect to work from home more.
“So the Government needs to get train firms to offer cut-price deals, carnet-style bundles [of ten tickets for the price of eight], flexible season tickets and better value-for- money fares across the board.
“Like the ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ deal, we need a ‘Head Out to Help Out’ campaign.”
Transport Focus’s call for action is outlined in its new report, Fairer Fares: The Future Of Rail Commuting.
Passengers told the pressure group that any discounts need to be substantial to be genuinely attractive.
One said: “Even when the office reopens, I expect I will be going there fewer than two days a week.
“There’s no flexible ticket for regular part-time travellers.”
Another commuter added: “Changing work patterns will probably result in most of my job being based from home.”
The average season ticket across 183 UK routes costs £3,067. And rail fares are set to increase again today.
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