|Murad Qureshi AM calls for Fares Freeze|
Commuters face seventh year of fare rises
Labour London Assembly Member, Murad Qureshi, has called on the Mayor of London to scrap his latest fares hike after a new report found that 76% of Londoners now believe fares are “too high”.
The report, ‘The case for a Fare Freeze’ found that the 40% increase in fares under Boris Johnson has left many Londoners struggling to cope with the cost of commuting.
Murad Qureshi has urged the Mayor to use expected TfL underspends and additional income to reverse this year’s 2.5% fare increase and freeze fares at 2014 levels.
A survey of 1,219 Londoners carried out for the report found that three quarters questioned think the cost of travel in the capital is too high. One woman from Hounslow said “it costs me around £10 a day to get from Zone 5 to Zone 1 and back and on the buses home, too expensive for a trip spent cramped and standing on public transport.”
Murad Qureshi said: "For seven years under Boris Johnson fare increases have outstripped wage growth forcing commuters to spend more of their pay-cheque travelling to work.
“The Mayor’s decision to raise fares for the seventh year running will put even more pressure on Hounslow residents struggling to cope with the cost of commuting. With 76% of Londoners believing fares are too high, a freeze for 2015 would give them a much needed break from the annual rise in fares.
“Whilst money is tight, I do not believe the answer is to take more from Londoners’ pockets - especially when TfL is expected to be sitting on millions in underspends and additional fares income.
“In 2016 London will elect a new Mayor who will have the opportunity to map out a four year plan for their fares strategy for their term of office. Until then a fares freeze this year would give Londoners some much needed respite from rising travel costs without harming the network’s upgrade and expansion plans."
January 8, 2015