Mayor Boris Johnson has rejected a London Assembly amendment to his budget which would have reversed a 38% hike in fares for some outer Londoners.
The 2015 fares package for Transport for London services included a reduction in the Oyster daily fares cap, a move intended to make travel more affordable for part-time and home workers.
The revenue lost through the reduction is being recouped by abolishing the off-peak fares cap and increasing the costs of paper travelcards.
As a result, some fares have increased by as much as 38%, although TfL claims only 25,000 people a day are paying more and says some would get a better deal by moving to Oyster and contactless payment.
Last month the Assembly passed a non-binding amendment to the Mayor’s draft budget which would have reversed the increase, however the final budget says the Mayor “has not accepted the Assembly’s proposed changes”.
Instead the Mayor has “has asked TfL to look as a matter of urgency at the impact this is having in practice and report back to him” and says he is “committed to making any adjustments to fares that he concludes may be necessary.”
Steve O’Connell, a Conservative party London Assembly member, has called on changes to be made “without delay”.
He added: “It’s great news that the Mayor has lowered the maximum daily ‘pay as you go’ fare for Londoners. The new fares cap benefits most of the Capital’s part-time workers, who can now commute to work during flexible hours and pay less on their ‘pay as you go’ Oysters.
“However, a small number of outer London workers, such as in my Croydon and Sutton constituencies, are still losing out because of changes to off-peak fare limits, that were introduced at the same time.”
Labour AM John Biggs commented: “Axing the off-peak Pay As You Go daily cap has meant thousands of London’s commuters hit with fare rises of up to 38%. The commuters hit by these changes will be seething at the Mayor’s intransigence despite cross-party agreement that he has got this decision totally wrong.
“With the latest papers revealing millions in increased income from business and domestic rates the Mayor could easily afford to back down and reverse this decision which is costing outer London commuters dearly. Instead he is kicking the issue into the long grass – reviews by TfL won’t help commuters struggling to cope with an up to 38% hike in their travel fares.”