The Government has announced plans to trial a new part-time rail ticket, allowing commuters who work three or four days a week to benefit from the same savings as monthly and yearly ticket-holders.
Transport Minister Norman Baker told the Evening Standard that a trial of the new ticket would be carried out “on a busy London commuter line.”
Speaking to the paper, he commented: “Why should there be a season ticket that works for people who work five days a week but that leaves people out of pocket if they work three or four days a week? Where’s the justice in that?”
News of the trial has been welcomed by Liberal Democrat and Conservative members of the London Assembly.
Both parties have previously called on the Mayor to introduce similar ticketing arrangements on Transport for London services, including the London Overground and Tube.
Conservative AM Richard Tracey said: “In March I helped release a report ‘Home Works’ that called on the Mayor to introduce flexible Travel Cards for part-time workers. I’m delighted that the Government appear to have read the report and are trialling one of the main recommendations.
He called on TfL to “go a step further and combine a package of flexible ticketing with commuter rebates” for days when the ticket-holder didn’t travel.
Mr Tracey said such a system would save some passengers “between £250 and £350” per year.
Liberal Democrat Caroline Pidgeon said: “It is simply wrong that people who work part-time are penalised because the fare structure is so rigidly based around people who work a conventional five day a week.
“A part-time travelcard would also do wonders to reduce overcrowding on the Tube.”