A letter to the Prime MinisterDear Mr Cameron (or David if I may be so informal) It seems your goodwill with the nation this New Year may have gotten off to a somewhat rocky beginning… I bet you are glad you chose to increase rail fares! Only a day back in the office and it’s clear to see that the latest increase, with an average of a 3.9% rise, has caused a great deal of opinion and comment. It could be argued that 10 years of increases on the trot is a little much – with an average season ticket rising by over £1,300 during this time and rail fares escalating 3x’s faster than average incomes in the past 5 years, it’s understandably a little difficult for any rail commuter to swallow. Not to mention the fact that we pay more for train travel than any other country in Europe! I don’t doubt the impact this rise would have on job access has been considered. With unemployment forecast to increase by 120,000 to 2.63 million this year I know it wouldn’t have escaped deliberation. Sadly, what most people will see is the creation of transport poverty and reduction in job accessibility, but I think I’ve figured out the truth… Why didn’t you say you were trying to encourage the nation to car-share? It’s a bold move! If the nation understood how easy it was to car-share and the cost and carbon savings as a result, I don’t think they’d be quite so quick to judge. They may even applaud the severe approach. Trying to save people money rather than bankrupt them is certainly not a crime and is welcomed, but perhaps it should’ve been explained before the hike in rail fares to avoid animosity and to facilitate understanding. To try and restore some faith and to help you communicate why car-sharing is the way forward, I’ve included a comparison of a couple of journeys below; showing the difference between rail fares and car-sharing costs and the significant savings that can be made. Hopefully this will help and you can use it to calm the critics.
Glasgow-Edinburgh £3,512 p/a £2,750 p/a
London – Birmingham £9,000+ p/a £6,850 p/aYours Sincerely Jemma Pennick Marketing Manager Liftshare
N.B. This post is an individual opinion from an employee at Liftshare and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the organisation.