Rail season tickets predicted to increase by 3.5 per cent

Rail commuters will find out how much their season tickets will cost this morning
Rail commuters will find out how much their season tickets will cost this morning
The Rev Canon Bob White with the Christmas campaign postbox
Picture: Byron Melton

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COMMUTERS are set to find out much their rail season tickets are going to rise next year.

The increase is predicted to be around 3.5 per cent, leading to the highest rise in rail fares in the last five years.

It will be announced by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) at 9.30am this morning, coming after the government links the annual January rise in Britain's regulated fares with the previous July's retail price index measure of inflation.

Regulated fares make up almost half of all tickets and include season tickets and standard returns.

Protests are set to take place by trade unions to mark the announcement.

Unions want reduced fares, public ownership and protection of jobs during protests outside railway stations in London, Birmingham, Cardiff, Bristol, Glasgow, Manchester and Liverpool.

Mick Whelan, general secretary of train drivers' union Aslef said: 'After years of austerity, when workers have not achieved pay increases for years at or around inflation, it is unfair that the industry they subsidise creates transport poverty and hurts the communities and industries that they should be supporting.'