MSE News

All change - jargon to be removed from train tickets

Train firms will remove jargon such as 'London terminals' and 'any permitted' from tickets on 100,000s of routes next month.

The Rail Delivery Group, which represents train companies, says language used on tickets can be confusing and that it wants to make fares easier to understand.

It says train companies have already removed unclear terms from tickets and journey information on 200,000 routes, but they will remove them from 500,000 more in September, and plan to remove them from a total of 1.6 million routes within the next two years.

To find hidden fares and split tickets, see our Cheap Train Tickets guide.

It's the end of the line for this jargon

There are three main phrases that the rail industry is going to be drastically cutting from its tickets and travel information next month. They are:

  • 'Route direct' - if the journey follows a direct route, with no changes, this phrase will be completely removed. If there is a change on the route, or your journey must pass through a major station, it will say 'via' the city or place.

  • 'Any permitted' - if the journey follows a direct route, with no changes, this phrase will be completely removed. If there is a change on the route, or your journey must pass through a major station, it will say 'via' the city or place. If customers can travel via multiple routes, these will be provided on the National Rail website.

  • 'London terminals' - if the ticket is valid at one specific station, it will say so on the ticket. If customers can travel to multiple stations, information will be provided on the National Rail website and train company websites to define which.

In addition to the changes, the Rail Delivery Group joined with watchdog Transport Focus in June to launch a consultation asking passengers' views on a 'root and branch reform' of the railway ticket system.

This consultation will run until 10 September and a report will be released later in autumn.

What does the Rail Delivery Group say?

Jason Webb, deputy managing director of customer portfolio at the Rail Delivery Group, said: "We know it can be confusing to buy a ticket on the train and that the outdated jargon unique to rail like 'London Terminals' or 'Any Permitted' is part of the problem. 

"We are making huge efforts as an industry to make this easier where we can, but to really make fares simpler to understand we need regulatory change. That's why we're running a consultation and asking customers to have their say on what they want from the future fares system."