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Croydon passengers feel the squeeze as transport fares set to rise

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THE annual tradition of fare rises on public transport will continue next year as tram, train and bus users get hit where it hurts.

Transport for London has said announced fares will increase by an average of 2.5 per cent from January 2, 2015, but it has focused on making life easier for flexible and part-time workers.

This means those travelling anytime in zones 1 to 5 will see their daily Oyster cards capping reduced to £10.90 from the £15.80 it has been this year.

TfL hopes this will reduce fares for an increasingly part-time workforce, meaning they will have lesser need to buy weekly travelcards.

However, off-peak capping – which starts after 9.30am – will rise from £8.50 to £10.90, meaning travelling around London at weekends could cost almost a third more.

Single tram and bus fares on Oyster cards will rise another 5p to £1.50, costing those who commute to and from work around £25 extra a year.

Seven-day travelcards within zones 1 to 5 will rise from £53.40 to £54.70, monthly travelcards from £205.10 to £210.10 and annual travelcards from £2,136 to £2,188.

The one-day bus and tram pass is to be reintroduced for occasional public transport users and will cost £5 from Oyster ticket stops.

Some Croydon commuters have reacted angrily to the news, although many expressed a sense of resignation. Georgia Hunt, 26, of Addiscombe, said: "With the service as it is, it doesn't feel as if we are getting value for money at this year's prices. But we have come to expect this. Commuting is miserable but it's a fact of life."

Thomas Hywel, 37, who lives in East Croydon, said: "The weekend fares sound very steep and not at all in line with inflation.

"A bigger and bigger chunk of my wage every year is going on commuting and there doesn't seem to be the wage increases to balance it out."

Mayor of London Boris Johnson, however, defended the rises, pointing to the benefits the changes would have for the part-time workforce. He said: "By overhauling our fares structure, we will put money back into the pockets of hundreds of thousands of hardworking people who make such a vital contribution to London's economy."

A spokeswoman for TfL said the extra money made from fare increases would be used to fund improvements to the transport network.

Croydon passengers feel the squeeze as transport fares set to rise


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