Sadiq Khan admits TfL bailout is ‘bad deal’ for Londoners as Tube fares rise

  • london
  • May 15, 2020
  • Comments Off on Sadiq Khan admits TfL bailout is ‘bad deal’ for Londoners as Tube fares rise

Sadiq Khan has admitted ‘strings’ that come with the £1.6 billion government bailout package to save Transport for London include hikes to Tube and bus fares.

The Mayor of London called the bailout a ‘bad deal’ for people living in the capital as it emerged fares will rise above inflation and certain free travel perks will be scrapped.

He also announced that the daily congestion charge for people driving through London will rise to £15 a day from next month, just as people are being urged to use public transport less and drive more due to coronavirus.

Mr Khan told Sky News: ‘This is not a deal I wanted to do as Mayor of London but the alternative was our buses and Tubes stop running at a time when we need to be maximising the services.

‘The deal that we’ve done with the government means that we accept a grant from the government, we have to borrow £5 million at a time when I’ve reduced the deficit from £1.5 billion to £200 million.

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‘But also we have to increase the fares that Londoners pay, and also increase the congestion charge. So there’s lots of strings attached to this deal – it’s a bad deal for Londoners.

‘But the alternative was stopping our buses and Tubes, which I think was unacceptable to me as the Mayor.’

The hours of the congestion charge will also be temporarily extended to seven days a week, rather than just on weekdays as it is currently.

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Operating hours will temporarily be extended in the evening from 6pm to 10pm. The price will increase from £11.50 to £15, which is a 30% hike, from June 22.

Mr Khan has frozen single fares on the London Underground, buses, DLR and trams since he became mayor in May 2016.

But as of January 2021 tube and bus fares will rise above inflation and free travel for 1.5 million schoolchildren will be stopped temporarily.

Londoners who have a Freedom Pass – those who are over 60 who travel for free – will also see this suspended during the morning and evening rush hours.

Disabled passengers will not lose their free travel passes.

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