The number of train passengers in London and the South East who feel their ticket is value for money has fallen, figures have shown.
Just 38% of passengers in the region in spring 2012 felt they were paying a fair price, down 3% on last year, according to a survey by Passenger Focus. Some 41% of passengers did not feel they were getting value for money, while 21% had a neutral opinion.
Nationally, 42% of passengers said they felt their ticket was value for money, falling from 44% satisfaction last year.
Season ticket holders with the Southeastern train company were found to be the least satisfied with value for money, with just 12% of people saying they were satisfied.
A spokesman for transport watchdog London TravelWatch said: “London’s passengers pay the highest proportion of fares as against rail industry costs in the UK – approximately 87p in every £1. This compares against much lower proportions for inter city journeys or local journeys in the regions.
“This may help explain why London’s passengers also have the lowest satisfaction ratings in terms of ‘value for money’ for the services that they have purchased or received.”
But generally passengers in London and the South East were pleased with the service they received. Four out of five (82%) of passengers said they were satisfied, while just 7% said they were dissatisfied.
Some of the train companies with the lowest satisfaction ratings serve London, including First Capital Connect (79% satisfaction), Southern (80%) and Southeastern (81%).
But passengers on Heathrow Connect gave it a satisfaction rating of 94%, while London to Tilbury and Southend operator c2c scored an impressive 91%.
London TravelWatch found reasons to be pleased with a number of service improvements for commuters in the capital.
The group’s spokesman said: “The London Overground service has been one area of improvement over the last few years and this helps illustrate the case for rail devolution, something which we have supported for some time, most recently in our response to the government’s rail decentralisation consultation.”
Reflecting on the survey’s findings, Passenger Focus chief executive Anthony Smith said: “Annual season ticket holders, particularly in London and South East England, despite having regulated fares, unsurprisingly do not think their tickets represent value for money.”
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