A frustrated intern has started a petition against Virgin Trains’ new railcard policy after her journey to work will increase from £27 to £86 a day.
Georgia May, 22, is concerned that Virgin Trains’ change to its railcard policy, which means people can no longer buy peak-time tickets at off-peak prices, will restrict young people.
“This will directly affect many young people in Rugby who like myself, who need to commute to work on peak time services and use their 16-25 Young Persons railcard to subsidise their means on transport.
“I am doing an internship in London and, because I could not afford to live in London, I purchased a railcard and decided I would commute from Rugby. My train fare is going up from a £27 return a day to £86, which I think is scandalous.
“I don’t even earn that much to pay for the new fare. I also cannot use the alternative train service London Midland as their fares are double what I pay under the current Virgin deal and they do not offer the same service as Virgin. A one-way commute just to get to London in the morning is an hour-and-a-half.”
Georgia is worried the changes could result in young people having to leave their jobs as they can’t afford to get to work.
She added: “I feel like I am being punished for being a hard-working individual who is trying to carve a successful career for myself.”
Georgia’s campaign has received support from UK lobby group Campaign for Better Transport.
The new policy takes effect from September 6. A spokesman for Virgin Trains said: “We are the only train operator to offer this double discount where customers can use discounted, off-peak tickets on peak-time trains. Customers who book tickets before September 6 can still travel using the double discount after the new rules come in. Normal railcard discounts on peak and off-peak tickets are unaffected and there are still many great deals available, particularly with some planning and flexibility.”