Fine for dodging rail fares five-fold to £ 100 in major new crackdown

Fine for dodging rail fares five-fold to £ 100 in major new crackdown

  • DfT hopes to recover more of the £ 240million lost to railway tariff fraud
  • Follows concerns that the current £ 20 fine, introduced in 2005, was not a deterrent
  • This means that the fines in England and Wales will be higher than in many European countries.

















The penalty for train ticket fraudsters is five times higher to reach £ 100 in a crackdown.

The Department for Transport (DfT) hopes to recoup more of the £ 240million lost to tariff fraud on railways in England and Wales each year.

It follows that the current £ 20 fine, introduced in 2005, was no longer a deterrent.

A DfT spokesperson said: “With over £ 240million lost each year due to tariff fraud on our railways, it is essential that the deterrents are effective and fair.”

The Department for Transport (DfT) hopes to recover more of the £ 240million lost to tariff fraud on railways in England and Wales each year

The Department for Transport (DfT) hopes to recover more of the £ 240million lost to tariff fraud on railways in England and Wales each year

In addition to the £ 100 fine, fraudsters will also have to pay the cost of the ticket they did not purchase. The penalty will be reduced to £ 50 if payment is made within 21 days.

The increase, which will be introduced in the spring, brings the railways closer to other transport providers, such as Manchester’s Metrolink.

It also means that the fines in England and Wales will be higher than in many European countries, such as Germany, where fraudsters pay £ 55, and France, where they pay £ 46.

The DfT added: “Fare fraud costs rail operators, rail travelers and taxpayers who end up subsidizing travel for those who deliberately travel by train without paying the correct fare.

It follows that the current £ 20 fine, introduced in 2005, was no longer a deterrent

It follows that the current £ 20 fine, introduced in 2005, was no longer a deterrent

“The Rail Delivery Group estimates that in a normal year around £ 240million is lost to tariff fraud on UK railways.

“Compared to the profound impact the coronavirus has had on passenger numbers and industry revenues, minimizing the cost of fare evasion for railways has never been more important.”

Penalty fares are issued only in cases where there were facilities to purchase a ticket at a passenger’s departure station, and they passed signs indicating the consequences of not having a ticket.

The DfT has said it will issue an update in spring 2022 on when the new penalty tariff will be introduced in England and Wales.

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