Commuter’s anger at unfair ticket price
A Stirling business owner – and regular train commuter – this week criticised ScotRail’s ticket pricing structure.
Josine Atsma, who has run Stirling Health Food Store, Dumbarton Road, for more than seven years, uses trains from Gleneagles Station, near Aucherarder, to travel into work.
Josine , who lives in Glendevon, added: “Recently, we had a ticket machine installed at Gleneagles.
“That’s when I noticed that everyone travelling westwards to Stirling direction pays an unjustifiable high ticket price compared with travelling east towards Perth.
“Travel time to Stirling and Perth are both around 18 minutes, but going to Perth I would only pay £8.70 but to Stirling I pay £14.30.
“It gets even more bizarre, because if I were to travel to Dundee from Gleneagles, which takes 40 minutes, I would pay less than to Stirling.
“And travelling from Gleneagles to Dunblane is also £14.30, the same as a ticket to Stirling.”
By road, the distance between Gleneagles Station and Perth is 9.1 miles , whilst 18 miles divides Gleneagles Station and Stirling. Gleneagles Station to Dunblane is 12 miles and Gleneagles to Dundee is almost 38 miles.
However, online information suggests it can take as little as 19 minutes to travel between Stirling and Gleneagles Station and 16 minutes to reach Perth, by train, from Gleneagles Station.
ScotRail were under fire earlier this month after pushing up ticket prices by an average 2.8 per cent, amid fierce criticism about the way trains are operating.
Cancellations throughout November and December breached required performance targets, prompting the Scottish Government to demand ScotRail publishes a plan on how it will improve.
ScotRail said the rise was below the UK average of 3.1 per cent and said it was investing “millions to build the best railway Scotland has ever had”.
Ms Astma said she had contacted Scotrail about the pricing issue she had identified, adding: “I have read about people complaining about ScotRail services in the Observer but when you, like me, pay an unexplainable high fare, you can understand that I am even more annoyed.
“I hope the press start investigating this and might prompt ScotRail to look into their pricing structure (although I don’t expect them to change it).
A ScotRail spokesperson said: “When setting fares, we take many factors into consideration – the principal one being fare regulation, which impacts on over 80 percent of our business.
“Thereafter we look at variety of other factors, including market conditions, geography, service offering, and target markets. There is no direct relationship between fares and mileage or journey time. This was broken down before rail privatisation in the mid-1990s.”
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Discrepancy Josine Atsma took this screen shot at Gleneagles Station on Friday
Not fair Josine Atsma unhappy about ticket pricing on her commute