Scottish rail fares to rise 3.9% from January 2013

Rail fares in Scotland are to increase by almost 4% from the start of next year, ScotRail has announced.

The train operator said the cost of tickets on its services would rise by 3.9% in January 2013

A ScotRail spokesman said: "We have worked hard to keep the increase down to a level that continues to offer value for money."

It also pledged continued investment in improvements, including more and faster services and better facilities.

ScotRail added that it hoped to freeze off peak fares from 2013 through until the end of its franchise in 2015, provided the Retail Prices Index (RPI) measure of inflation remained below 3.5% per annum.

It also said any increase in peak fares in January 2014 and 2015 would be capped at RPI - rather than RPI plus 1%.

Procurement programme

The UK government had capped the maximum rail fare rise at RPI plus 1% earlier this year.

The Scottish government earlier detailed how the current Scottish rail franchise would run until March 2015, to allow a "prudent procurement programme".

Transport Minister Keith Brown said: "We will not be rushed, we will not be hasty and there will be no risky shortcuts in terms of franchising in Scotland. Our approach must be measured."

The government will offer two separate franchises, a 10-year ScotRail franchise with the option of a break after five years - worth a potential £2.5bn - and a separate sleeper franchise for up to 15 years, worth at least £200m.

The two will be obtained separately. The sleeper service procurement programme will run in spring next year, followed by the ScotRail service next summer.

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites