No-ticket train trav­ellers face new penal­ties

Midweek Visiter - - Front Page - BY JAMIE LOPEZ [email protected]­plc.com @jamie_lopez1

NORTH­ERN Rail users will be fined for trav­el­ling with­out a ticket on a num­ber of new routes. The net­work said it is in­vest­ing “mil­lions of pounds” to in­tro­duce more than 600 new ticket machines, to en­sure cus­tomers buy a ticket be­fore trav­el­ling.

If caught with­out a ticket rail users will be fined £20 – or twice the sin­gle fare.

The new penalty routes in­clude Wi­gan-Southport and Orm­skirk-Pre­ston and will come into ef­fect on De­cem­ber 6.

The changes will af­fect jour­neys us­ing sta­tions that have ei­ther ticket of­fices or ticket vend­ing machines.

In ad­di­tion, cus­tomers trav­el­ling on the net­work can buy tick­ets be­fore board­ing trains by us­ing the North­ern app.

If these fa­cil­i­ties are not avail­able, or if of­fices are closed or machines out of or­der, North­ern Rail said cus­tomers will still be able to buy a ticket from the on­board con­duc­tor.

There will also be a new fea­ture on ticket machines that are card only, al­low­ing cus­tomers to ob­tain “prom­ise to pay” no­tices.

These can then be pre­sented to the con­duc­tor and pay­ment can be made.

If cus­tomers board from sta­tions with ticket machines or staffed ticket of­fices, but do not have a valid ticket, they will only be el­i­gi­ble for stan­dard fares if buy­ing from the con­duc­tor, and could face a fine.

A North­ern Rail spokesman said: “We are in­vest­ing mil­lions of pounds to in­tro­duce more than 600 new ticket machines across the net­work and have de­vel­oped our web­site and mo­bile app to give cus­tomers more op­tions and to make buy­ing a ticket eas­ier than ever be­fore.

“How­ever, there will still be some cir­cum­stances in which cus­tomers are un­able to buy tick­ets and our autho­rised col­lec­tors are able to use their dis­cre­tion to en­sure no-one faces un­fair penal­ties.

“Where cus­tomers do feel a penalty fare has been ap­plied wrongly there is a tried and tested, in­de­pen­dent appeals process which is used across the coun­try.”

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