Responding to the launch of a new flexible season ticket for train travel this week, Jane Gratton, Head of People Policy at the BCC, said:
“It is positive the government has recognised the need to improve the system, but the flexibility and savings offered by the new scheme do not go anywhere near far enough.
“To power the country’s post-covid economic recovery, businesses need access to the widest possible pool of talent to fuel their expansion plans. Our new flexible working patterns will help more people to thrive in work – but they must be supported by equally flexible, and more affordable, fares and ticketing.
“Hybrid ways of working are here to stay so the archaic and complicated ticket pricing system needs to catch up - and fast. To make the system fit for purpose, we need to rip up the rulebook and start again.
“If commuters can see no advantage to the system, they will not use it. Flexible fares must provide a reasonable level of discount without a straitjacket being placed on their use.There should be a value for money solution wherever you are based in the country, for how ever often you travel, and wherever you need to go.
“The government has started the ball rolling but it must now translate this into a longer-term concrete commitment to positive change for our railways that places the passenger at the heart of the system.”