DfT Consultation on Expanding Pay as you Go

cjp

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They explain their reasoning in one of the appendix to the consultation paper linked in the first post. They often mention the possibilities of going out further to places such as Brighton and Cambridge.
However I think one step at at a time before rushing for the crayons Just respond to what they ask giving your reasons.
Perhaps some brave soul would post their answers to the questions asked to be critiqued??

More importantly it is not seen as an expansion of Oyster but something else.
Perhaps following the way it is done in Holland but retaining (for now) paper tickets as well as PAYG
 
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higthomas

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Thanks for that.

I don't understand why they don't use a more uniform boundary - if it's stretching to Aylesbury nearly 40 miles out of London, then why is Dorking the limit in that direction?

IMO, if they want to equalise things they could consider setting the limits at something like Aylesbury, Haddenham & T, Tilehurst, Bramley, Basingstoke, Alton, Liphook, Pulborough, Wivelsfield, East Grinstead, Uckfield, Robertsbridge, Ashford, Faversham, Shoeburyness, Southminster, Braintree, Whittlesford, Foxton, Sandy, Flitwick and Leighton Buzzard. That would look something like this (distances as the crow flies, from Charing Cross):



That would mean Oyster expanding to a distance of around 30-40 miles out of central London (50 in the case of Ashford, due to the HS1 service). I would have thought that would encompass a significant number of commuters, and perhaps entice those who only have to commute part-time to increase their usage of the railways (or increase their perception of value for money), due to the way that Oyster/contactless fares work.

It would require an equalisation of fares to take place, with stations broadly speaking being grouped until something like Zone 15 (a publicly published Zone 15). I think that's simple enough for people to get their heads around. But no doubt there would be a required resultant increase in subsidy unless those lines with currently lower fares (e.g. Uckfield) had their fares dramatically increased.
Whilst I agree it should be more equidistant around London, I do think it should finish at major stations. E.G. Picking Foxton and Whittlesford Parkway instead of Cambridge is just perverse, and going beyond Haywards Heath to Wivlesfield but not Burgess Hill also seems stupid.
 

ForTheLoveOf

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Whilst I agree it should be more equidistant around London, I do think it should finish at major stations. E.G. Picking Foxton and Whittlesford Parkway instead of Cambridge is just perverse, and going beyond Haywards Heath to Wivlesfield but not Burgess Hill also seems stupid.
Fair enough, but I think the TOCs might not appreciate it if major "tourist trap" revenue fell within a (likely cheaper) Oyster zonal system, e.g. Bicester Village, Cambridge, Oxford, Brighton etc.

You'd then also want to stop a fair while short to discourage people using Oyster and then a bus or separate paper ticket.

The locations I've suggested are just ideas, and where possible I've tried to select places that are either junctions or the last in a string of stations.
 

higthomas

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Fair enough, but I think the TOCs might not appreciate it if major "tourist trap" revenue fell within a (likely cheaper) Oyster zonal system, e.g. Bicester Village, Cambridge, Oxford, Brighton etc.

You'd then also want to stop a fair while short to discourage people using Oyster and then a bus or separate paper ticket.

The locations I've suggested are just ideas, and where possible I've tried to select places that are either junctions or the last in a string of stations.
Hmm, you've taken exactly the opposite approach to the DFT, whose second thought was this map, obviously explicitly including such stations:
upload_2019-2-8_16-44-8.png

I'd argue both are too far one way or the other, I.E. including Brighton but not Crawley seems stupid, as does Foxton but not Cambridge.

Also, to respond to your reasoning, I think we won't see the same decrease in price we've sometimes seen with Oyster. They'll work hard to make this revenue neutral (or positive!). I'd recommend reading the document btw. (Which I'm assuming you haven't.)
 

Bletchleyite

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Whilst I agree it should be more equidistant around London, I do think it should finish at major stations. E.G. Picking Foxton and Whittlesford Parkway instead of Cambridge is just perverse, and going beyond Haywards Heath to Wivlesfield but not Burgess Hill also seems stupid.
For the wider area it would make more sense to me to go out to Northampton. That is the point where the character of LNR services shifts from London commuter to regional.
 

Meerkat

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Some thoughts from skimming the document....

Why should fares be consistent between different lines, particularly where they are subsidised? A poor area with few jobs warrants subsidised travel into London more than a rich area of high earners for example, and the fares should take account of available capacity and arguably the quality of service.

It seems to suggest reducing the number of fares ie binning super off peak - I thought one of the advantages of PAYG was the capability to have a more gradual change from peak to offpeak to help spread demand?

It also suggests getting rid of operator specific fares, which seems ridiculous to me - surely you want to keep short distance commuters off the long distance trains? Is there not a way for the guard to tap cards on the long distance services to show they were so used?
 

Bletchleyite

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It seems to suggest reducing the number of fares ie binning super off peak - I thought one of the advantages of PAYG was the capability to have a more gradual change from peak to offpeak to help spread demand?
Yes, I see that as bizarre - PAYG would seem a good way to manage the introduction of a wider set of fares, including stuff like "early bird" travel.

It also suggests getting rid of operator specific fares, which seems ridiculous to me - surely you want to keep short distance commuters off the long distance trains? Is there not a way for the guard to tap cards on the long distance services to show they were so used?
Operator specific fares are a very poor way to do this and just result in silly price-war-style spats like the VT and LNR Only fares from MKC. If commuters cause an issue on long-distance services, making them pick-up and set-down only to avoid *any* commuters using them is the best way to handle this. I am fully in support of complete abolition of operator specific fares other than Advances, to be honest.
 

Hadders

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It also suggests getting rid of operator specific fares, which seems ridiculous to me - surely you want to keep short distance commuters off the long distance trains? Is there not a way for the guard to tap cards on the long distance services to show they were so used?
LNER don't want to keep short distance commuters between Stevenage and London off their trains - the 'LNER only' fares from Stevenage to London are cheaper than the 'Any Permitted fare'.....
 

cjp

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If commuters cause an issue on long-distance services, making them pick-up and set-down only to avoid *any* commuters using them is the best way to handle this. I am fully in support of complete abolition of operator specific fares other than Advances, to be honest.
Although moving away from the topic I would disagree with your last point as the paying a premium to travel on faster service such as Virgin rather than say LM is worthy of a separate fare although of course it does depend on how one values ones time
 

MikeWh

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Yes, I see that as bizarre - PAYG would seem a good way to manage the introduction of a wider set of fares, including stuff like "early bird" travel.
Which Oyster does by charging off-peak if you touch in before 0630.
 

swt_passenger

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If Oyster style concentric rings just reach further and further out, as people seem to want, what is the “end game” for fares from one extremity to the far opposite? At the moment a Zone 6 <> Zone 1 fare costs the same as Zone 6 <> Zone 6 via Zone 1. The small minority (I’d assume) of passengers travelling right across the area, ie taking a diameter rather than a radius of the big circle, effectively get a bargain, but TfL seem happy with that.

Putting random station names into play, are Brighton to London, Bedford to London, and Brighton to Bedford all going to cost the same? If so how can that ever be revenue neutral? In the unlikely event that it all goes on working like today, but at a much bigger radius, then what happens to long distance orbital fares?
 

JonathanH

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If Oyster style concentric rings just reach further and further out, as people seem to want, what is the “end game” for fares from one extremity to the far opposite? At the moment a Zone 6 <> Zone 1 fare costs the same as Zone 6 <> Zone 6 via Zone 1. The small minority (I’d assume) of passengers travelling right across the area, ie taking a diameter rather than a radius of the big circle, effectively get a bargain, but TfL seem happy with that.

Putting random station names into play, are Brighton to London, Bedford to London, and Brighton to Bedford all going to cost the same? If so how can that ever be revenue neutral? In the unlikely event that it all goes on working like today, but at a much bigger radius, then what happens to long distance orbital fares?
London's fare structure is already broken - the idea of concentric rings should be replaced by something based on distinct clusters across the capital (perhaps based on the London boroughs). Then I think it is easier to change the fares for these cross London journeys.

I think we have enough evidence from Redhill fares that an additional amount is charged for going beyond the Zone 6 boundary across London. So no, while Bedford to London and Brighton to London could cost the same, Bedford to Brighton would be more expensive.
 

ForTheLoveOf

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London's fare structure is already broken - the idea of concentric rings should be replaced by something based on distinct clusters across the capital (perhaps based on the London boroughs). Then I think it is easier to change the fares for these cross London journeys.

I think we have enough evidence from Redhill fares that an additional amount is charged for going beyond the Zone 6 boundary across London. So no, while Bedford to London and Brighton to London could cost the same, Bedford to Brighton would be more expensive.
I suppose the alternative is to change the charging scheme so that it charges by the number of zones you pass through. Bedford to Brighton would then cost more like the sum of the Bedford-Zone 1 and Zone 1-Brighton fares.
 

FenMan

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I suppose the alternative is to change the charging scheme so that it charges by the number of zones you pass through. Bedford to Brighton would then cost more like the sum of the Bedford-Zone 1 and Zone 1-Brighton fares.
Surely a matrix of fare zones would be required, otherwise the Reading - Gatwick Airport via Gomshall fare could be extremely good value. Also there's the issue of knowing if a Reading - Gatwick passenger has travelled via Gomshall or via Clapham Junction.
 

JonathanH

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Surely a matrix of fare zones would be required, otherwise the Reading - Gatwick Airport via Gomshall fare could be extremely good value. Also there's the issue of knowing if a Reading - Gatwick passenger has travelled via Gomshall or via Clapham Junction.
Or Ealing Broadway - Earls Court - West Brompton - Clapham Junction

Or indeed at some point changing once at Farringdon.

Reading to Gatwick via Guildford is currently offered at a materially lower fare than via London - you would hope that this would remain the case as this is the way GWR want people to travel for this journey. If you can't distinguish which way someone goes, perhaps except by way of a separate gateline at Reading for Guildford / Waterloo services (but then what do you do when they use the other platforms), then maybe the North Downs Line should be left out of this.
 

anme

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Or Ealing Broadway - Earls Court - West Brompton - Clapham Junction

Or indeed at some point changing once at Farringdon.

Reading to Gatwick via Guildford is currently offered at a materially lower fare than via London - you would hope that this would remain the case as this is the way GWR want people to travel for this journey. If you can't distinguish which way someone goes, perhaps except by way of a separate gateline at Reading for Guildford / Waterloo services (but then what do you do when they use the other platforms), then maybe the North Downs Line should be left out of this.
Oyster can charge different fares for different routes so I'm sure a possible new system for the railway could do the same.
 

JonathanH

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Oyster can charge different fares for different routes so I'm sure a possible new system for the railway could do the same.
Yes, but only by the use of pink readers / ticket gates at interchanges.

Redhill - Gatwick - East Croydon is twice the distance of Redhill - East Croydon but Oyster will charge the same fare if you don't touch a barrier en route.
 

anme

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They might be a bit upset at the price increase if paper tickets are set only at anytime rates within the area where PAYG is introduced.
They would probably also be upset if we charged to 50 pound supplement for paper tickets. But why would either of those things happen?
 

anme

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Yes, but only by the use of pink readers / ticket gates at interchanges.

Redhill - Gatwick - East Croydon is twice the distance of Redhill - East Croydon but Oyster will charge the same fare if you don't touch a barrier en route.
That is true but is it a big problem? Given that it takes rather longer and involves changing trains, travelling from Redhill to Croydon via Gatwick is likely to be a rather niche activity.

If we are really concerned about this, we can record that the card was used on this route during a ticket check and an extra charge can be made at the end of the day. I believe something similar is done with contactless payment cards in London.
 

MikeWh

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Yes, but only by the use of pink readers / ticket gates at interchanges.

Redhill - Gatwick - East Croydon is twice the distance of Redhill - East Croydon but Oyster will charge the same fare if you don't touch a barrier en route.
Yes it will, and that is how the system is designed.
 

JonathanH

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Easy - people using multi-user cards will buy paper tickets.
They might be a bit upset at the price increase if paper tickets are set only at anytime rates within the area where PAYG is introduced.
They would probably also be upset if we charged to 50 pound supplement for paper tickets. But why would either of those things happen?
Different fares for travel that isn't PAYG

88 We want to encourage as many people as possible to travel using smart tickets and contactless bank cards. That's because as well as being more convenient, PAYG travel is also more efficient than providing more and more ticket machines.

89 One way of doing this could be to make PAYG fares cheaper than their non-PAYG equivalent. Non-PAYG tickets may still exist, but they would be more expensive than the cash equivalent. Alternatively, passengers not traveling by PAYG might not have access to some cheaper fares. For example, it may be that the only return tickets not on a smart medium are priced at peak levels - although we would need to ensure that any such changes are proportionate.

90 However, either approach would need to be handled with extreme care. If, for any reason, passengers are unable to use PAYG travel, we do not want them to be unfairly penalised. This makes it even more important that any technology adopted can cater to as many types of passenger as possible.

91 Some discounted tickets would still need to be purchased in advance, such as Groupsave. As a general rule, tickets that must currently be purchased in advance are unlikely to be available through PAYG in future.

Q31 – Should fares for PAYG travel be cheaper?
Q32 - (Alternatively), would you be willing to pay more for PAYG as long as any refund for delays is automatically credited to you, when you are entitled to it?
Q33 – Please explain why
Removal of off-peak paper tickets happened in London. It is a 'no-brainer' for the DfT because any other scenario means that people choose the lower priced option of paper fares and PAYG. So for PAYG to work, you need to remove any fares which are cheaper.
 

anme

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Removal of off-peak paper tickets happened in London. It is a 'no-brainer' for the DfT because any other scenario means that people choose the lower priced option of paper fares and PAYG. So for PAYG to work, you need to remove any fares which are cheaper.
I completely disagree that you have to price PAYG cheaper than paper tickets for it to be successful. PAYG is much more convenient than paper tickets for most journeys where it's a sensible option - that will ensure that most people use it. Most people don't enjoy wasting time queuing up for a paper ticket (and allowing extra time for their journey just in case they have to do so).

Maybe you could respond to the consultation with your concerns?
 

JonathanH

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I completely disagree that you have to price PAYG cheaper than paper tickets for it to be successful. PAYG is much more convenient than paper tickets for most journeys where it's a sensible option - that will ensure that most people use it. Most people don't enjoy wasting time queuing up for a paper ticket (and allowing extra time for their journey just in case they have to do so).

Maybe you could respond to the consultation with your concerns?
I agree with you. You don't have to price PAYG cheaper - convenience has some value.

But on the grounds of simplification, you can't have people worried about whether PAYG or paper tickets are cheaper. Likewise, the DfT / TOCs will lose out if people simply choose the lower fare for their journey whilst two completely different fare structures are in force. The sensible outcome of that for the train operator and DfT is to retain a limited range of paper tickets at twice the peak single fare and abolish all other ones.

Yes, I will need to respond to the consultation.
 

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