Renew your travelcards! We’ve got an extra fortnight of fares at 2013 prices before they go up in January.
You might remember us scratching our heads at the start of the month, wondering where the fare announcement was. Then it came with a 4.1% rise for travelcards and bus users (though fares are more or less frozen if you use Pay As You Go), to be followed by intense confusion two days later when George Osborne said that, actually, he was handing out some money to keep national fare rises to 3.1%. Did that cover London? Nobody seemed to know.
The good news is that yes, it does cover London. The even better news is that because the government cash came so late, Transport for London won’t be able to implement the change until 19 January, meaning we’re all travelling on 2013 prices for longer. Fares were supposed to go up on 3 January.
Assembly Member John Biggs does point out that the Lower Fares Fortnight, as we’re henceforth dubbing it, will mean lower income for TfL at a time when they’re supposedly strapped for cash:
While this will bring a few weeks relief to Londoners in the new year, it will leave a hole in TfL’s budget, one which the Mayor said fares needed to increase to fill. He should be knocking on the door of 11 Downing Street demanding the Chancellor cough up that cash.
Photo by Tim Grist from the Londonist Flickr pool