New flexible season tickets, aimed at people who are likely to commute to work a couple of days a week, have gone on sale today.
The paperless tickets will allow travel on any 8 days in a 28-day period, with passengers able to tap smartcards or scan mobiles at the station with no need to select the days of travel in advance.
For example, someone travelling between Woking and London Terminals two days a week.
Assuming working a typical working year with 4 weeks holiday = which equates to 233 working days a year (365 days – 104 weekends – 8 bank holidays – 20 days holiday)
Using the slightly confusing National Rail calculator
Commuting two days a week to London Terminals = 93 days a year
- If buying tickets daily, that works out at £2,325 per year.
- If buying a flexi ticket, that works out at £1,977 per year.
Commuting three days a week to London Terminals = 140 days a year.
- If buying tickets daily, that works out at £3,500 per year.
- If buying a flexi ticket, that works out at £2,884 per year.
However, if you include forward travel from London Waterloo using the London Underground, then the discounts vanish as the flexi ticket does not include tube/bus journeys.
The flexi tickets also do not cover journeys on the mainline trains that are wholly within the London Travelcard Zones when using Oyster/contactless cards.
So while people outside London can get the discounted travel into London, Londoners, who are already being asked to pick up more of the cost of government travel bailouts than the rest of the UK, once again lose out on a UK travel deal.
The launch of flexible season tickets is the first step in the reform of the railways, as part of the recently launched Williams-Shapps Plan for Rail.