Happy rail passengers?

29 June 2016

Today we published the latest wave of the National Rail Passenger Survey (NRPS). As ever, a mixed picture from the 28,000 survey forms returned to us – measuring journeys from January to March this year.

The NRPS focuses on the journey the passenger has just undertaken and covers a representative sample of the current users of Britain. Through being able to link the results back to specific trains we produce rich, useful data the train companies and others, such as Network Rail, can act on. The results shift around showing that such action has an effect and can be recorded. Other surveys ask more generalised questions about train companies – but there is no check anyone has even used the companies in question or they are describing the right company – we double check all this.

Commuters continue to record the least satisfactory experiences. While commuters usually do record somewhat lower scores there are some really wide variations particularly in London and the South East. Overall satisfaction is at 80 per cent. However, there is no ‘average’ passenger and that is why we break down the satisfaction statistics to look at different groups.

Click here to look at an infographic with various breakdowns and comparisons.

It’s not all doom and gloom: we were pleased to see positive results as well – both Great Western Railway and Virgin Trains achieved a higher overall score this year. Northern Rail and South West Trains both scored higher on the value for money rating.

But overall, the message is clear. Industry needs to better manage planned and unplanned disruption – getting services back to normal as soon as possible and keeping passengers informed.

And it must do something to help ease the pain – make some offer that shows passengers they haven’t been forgotten and that acknowledges problems experienced. This could include implementing the Government’s welcome promise to cut the threshold for Delay Repay to 15 minutes from the current 30.


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