When couple Emma Clark and Davyd Winter-Bates booked their special offer tickets from London to Southampton with South West Trains, they did not think it would be a problem to cut the journey short and get off the train at Eastleigh.

How wrong could they be! The tickets, which cost them just £6 each apparently did not allow you to break the journey. So when they hopped off the train, they were each fined £57 – twice the standard fare. 

Stagecoach, who own the train company released a statement saying:

“Leaving a train early is not allowed on heavily discounted tickets. The fine is double the standard single fare.”

There are a couple of worrying things wrong with this. First, I cannot think of any other business that will fine you if you don’t finish using the service. Take as an example a theme park – would they fine you if you left before they close? No, of course not – so are there railway “fines” legal? After all, they had paid for the trip which covered all the stations they passed through.

Secondly, if they force you to be on a train, is this not false imprisonment? Sure at the start of the journey you intend to travel the whole way, but what if half way you get a call with an emergency and have to get off?

Instead of enforcing silly fines, might I suggest the train companies actually start to charge a sensible fare for travel? I’ve just checked and the standard “anytime” fare from Manchester to London Euston is £131 – that’s for a 200 mile journey.

I can take a 7 day holiday in Menorca, including return flights for £9 more.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rate this:
Rating: 5.0/5 (3 votes cast)
Couple fined £114 for leaving £6 train trip early, 5.0 out of 5 based on 3 ratings