More rail penalty fare routes come on line
NORTHERN Rail has announced the introduction of further penalty fare routes across the network - but the Manchester Evening News can confirm you CAN still buy tickets on board.
The penalties - of £20 or double the cost of a single fare - are designed to stop people boarding trains without buying a ticket on the platform.
They mean that that passengers arriving at their destination without a ticket are likely to be stung by collectors.
But travellers who don’t get their ticket at the station, perhaps because they are running late, will still have the chance to buy on board, a Northern spokesman has confirmed.
The rules just mean a passenger who can’t prove they tried to buy a ticket before boarding they won’t be able to get a cheaper-rate ticket, and will have to buy a standard one.
This could mean seeking out a conductor - which Northern says are still in place on EVERY train.
Northern first introduced penalty fares earlier this year with a trial and the operator claims the scheme has been ‘praised.’
Buoyed by the trial, the fines are now being extended to more routes from December 6. They are: ■Manchester to Sheffield ■Wigan to Kirkby ■Wigan to Southport ■Preston to Colne - and through to Hebden Bridge ■Preston to Ormskirk ■Hull to Scarborough ■Middlesbrough to Whitby
A spokesman said: “Most stations on penalty fare routes will have either ticket offices or ticket vending machines and so customers will have the opportunity to purchase tickets before they travel.”
Northern say they are investing ‘millions’ to install more than 600 new ticket machines across the network.
But they said collectors would ‘use their discretion’ to ensure ‘noone faces unfair penalties.’
An independent appeals process is available for when passengers feel a fare has been wrongly applied.
Northern Rail is expanding its penalty fare programme