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RIA: better and simpler fares and ticketing can drive revenues and restore trust in rail

27 March 2024 


A new report from the Railway Industry Association (RIA) today (27 March) provides a fresh blueprint for improving the fares and ticketing across UK rail. The analysis was developed with key members and found that a focus on enhancing the customer experience and ridership through retail reform can drive revenue growth without increasing ticket prices.

The report describes recent RIA-commissioned research by Steer which found that rail passenger numbers could grow between 37% and 97% by 2050 as a huge opportunity to grow rail use while boosting revenues, reducing subsidy, and accelerating decarbonisation.

The report has four key asks. These are:

  • Set out and stick to a stable national vision for the future of rail retail which balances national and regional interests while ensuring the right balance between private and public sectors.
  • Interfaces between different ticketing systems, across transport modes and constituencies, need to be standardised in a way which both allows interoperability and enables innovation
  • A level playing field for all, including access to all core data, fares, and features, to create an environment supportive of rail retailers and one which encourages competition and accelerated innovation for the customer benefit.
  • A clear contracting framework should be established to give providers certainty to operate and cultivate an environment which attracts new entrants and fosters collaboration.


Commenting on the report RIA Innovation Director Milda Manomaityte said: ‘“Delivering an enhanced passenger experience is a key pillar of Government rail strategy. Providing better, simplified fares and ticketing, rooted in the principles of trust and value, are vital to driving net revenue growth and customer satisfaction. We hope rail policy makers, stakeholders and all those in the railway industry with an interest in fares and ticketing, find this report a useful contribution to the debate on how we can boost revenues and rebuild trust in rail in the future.”

Notes to Editors
  1. The report is available here from 1000 on 27.3.24 -
  2. About RIA: The Railway Industry Association (RIA) is the voice of the UK rail supply community. We help to grow a sustainable, high-performing, railway supply industry, and to export UK rail expertise and products. RIA has over 360 companies in membership in a sector that contributes £43 billion in economic growth and £14 billion in tax revenue each year, as well as employing 710,000 people. It is also a vital industry for the UK’s economic recovery, supporting green investment and jobs in towns and communities across the UK; for every £1 spent in rail, £2.50 is generated in the wider economy. RIA’s membership is active across the whole of railway supply, covering a diverse range of products and services and including both multi-national companies and SMEs (60% by number).
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