Record satisfaction levels in latest National Passenger Survey (NPS)

28 March 2013

Passenger Focus chief executive, Anthony Smith, said:

“The passenger voice helps to drive change on the railways. It is clear that major improvements are linked to where passengers have spoken, and industry has acted. It is critical that industry and government continue listening to what passengers are saying, and basing investment and operational decisions around this.”

“Passengers are saying the quality of rail services is improving. The combination of increased income from fares, government investment and a clearer focus on performance and dealing with disruption is beginning to pay off.

“However, more work needs to be done. Satisfaction on individual routes still varies widely from 76 to 97 per cent. Satisfaction with value for money nudged up by one per cent (to 47 per cent), with individual operators varying between 29 and 75 per cent.”

Passengers across Great Britain have reported record levels of satisfaction with train services– 85 per cent overall, with no operator scoring less than 80 per cent.

Many train companies and Network Rail areas have made noticeable improvements. East Coast is now level pegging with Virgin at 92 per cent overall satisfaction. Greater Anglia, with still a long way to go, has improved markedly and is now much more firmly placed in among its peers. Chiltern, moving many commuters every day, reaches 91 per cent. First Hull Trains has bounced back to a healthy 95 per cent and Grand Central leads the whole pack with 96 per cent overall satisfaction.

Autumn wave scores tend to be higher than the spring wave’s, as last year’s fare rises fade in the memory. However, this is still a promising score. The key driver of rail passenger satisfaction remains punctuality. While there are flat spots punctuality continues to head in the right direction overall, pulling satisfaction with it.

Investment in stations is also paying off. King Cross shows a 32 per cent increase in satisfaction, Waterloo 11 per cent and Blackfriars is also improving. Other stations are possibly showing the effect of rebuilding works.

This and previously published NPS reports can be downloaded from the Passenger Focus website:

–       Ends

Contact info

Sara Nelson, Head of Communications

0300 123 0820 /


Notes to editors

  • Passenger Focus is the official, independent consumer organisation representing the interests of rail users nationally and bus, coach and tram users across England outside London. We want to make a difference for rail, bus, coach and tram passengers.
  • We’ll do this by:
    • providing authoritative advice for industry based on sound research
    • securing improvements to services – both big and small-scale
    • helping passengers with advice and information
    • campaigning for change
    • acting on rail passenger complaints.


  • More than 30,000 passengers took part in this wave of the National Passenger Survey (NPS), which offers a network-wide picture of satisfaction with rail travel. It is carried out twice a year from a representative sample of journeys.


  • NPS was carried out in autumn 2012 and is released as an official statistic. The survey  allows a comparison over time of overall satisfaction, and satisfaction with around 30 specific aspects of service including value for money, station facilities and crowding on the train.
Like what you read? Please click below to share on social media.