Passenger satisfaction with rail industry falls 6% since 2008

15th Aug 2018

Customer satisfaction with the rail industry has fallen in the past decade, according to analysis by Which?

The analysis of official Transport Focus data uncovered the fact that 73% of people are satisfied with the punctuality and reliability of trains, a fall from 79% in 2008. 

Commuters were even less satisfied, with just 62% happy with punctuality and reliability, compared to 72% a decade ago. 

Less than half of passengers declared themselves satisfied with value for money (46%) or handling of delays (38%) in the same period, although both categories did see small increases in customer satisfaction over the decade, at three and four percentage points respectively. 

Trust in the rail industry has reached its lowest point in six years, with just 23% of people in July 2018 revealing that they trust train travel according to Which?’s consumer insight tracker, a six percentage point fall compared with July 2017. 

The statistics come in light of the 3.2% fare increase for 2019 which was announced today – rail fares have increased by a total of 40% since 2008 – by the Office for National Statistics, as determined by the RPI inflation measure. 

Jo Causon, Chief Executive of The Institute of Customer Service, commenting on the Which? Transport Focus findings said: “UK commuters have been putting up with substandard rail service for far too long. Our own recent findings from our UK Customer Satisfaction Index paint an even bleaker story, and show a quarter (22.4%) of all UK passengers experience a problem – which is unsustainable.  

“It’s time that providers, Government and regulators work together to devise ways of incentivising higher standards of customer service across the lifetime of rail franchises for the benefit of UK passengers, as well as our economy.’’ 


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