Wednesday 24 January 2018

Last-minute price rise hits rail travellers

Paul Melia

PASSENGERS will be forced to pay more for booking last-minute train tickets through Iarnrod Eireann's website.

The state rail company yesterday defended an increase in its internet prices, saying that buying online was still cheaper than at stations.

Online tickets used to be available for just €10, regardless of how far in advance of the travelling day they were booked. Now, prices for last-minute bookings will increase closer to the travelling date.

The company said it would continue to offer discounted fares online, but that discounts would vary at different times.

"Previously we tended to have a set fare per train, where the fare was €10 regardless if it was booked four weeks ahead or the day before travel. We are changing over to the method more commonly used in transport, which is that the fare varies in accordance with demand," spokesman Barry Kenny said.

"This means that €10 singles are available on all trains, but that if demand increases for a certain train, the €10 tickets sell out, and it then moves to the next price point."

The company is free to set its own internet prices. The National Transport Authority must give approval to all fares at booking offices and ticket machines.

Irish Independent

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