Boris Johnson’s Tube fare rises could lead to better travel - opinion

17:23 17 January 2012

Does the possibility of improved Tube travel make Boris Johnson

Does the possibility of improved Tube travel make Boris Johnson's fare rises worth the money?

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Boris Johnson has increased fares, although I am yet to suffer them as my travelcard conveniently started two days before the rise.

For cleaner, more efficient trains fare rises are worth the money.

The London Underground feels better to travel on in 2011 than it did in 2007.

It’s always difficult to notice an improvement on the London Underground when travelling on it every day.

I had a three-year hiatus of not using the Tube as I was away from London a lot of the time between 2007 and 2010.

My memory of the travel before moving away was not a happy one, with delays seemingly a daily occurrence on the Central line.

To be fair some of those delays were not TfL’s fault as some were caused by cable thefts.

However, there was a week when I had to use alternative routes due to a communications failure, if my memory holds true.

Fast-forward to 2011/2012 and the Central line feels different, time wise anyway.

Delays can happen, yes, but they don’t seem as frequent as they did in 2007 – it just seems to be the occasional defective train.

However, there don’t seem to be as many, if any, long-term problems on the Central Line, touch wood.

That’s not to say it isn’t uncomfortable to ride on still.

Of course you still get the crush between Notting Hill Gate and Liverpool Street but that’s to be expected at rush hour.

I’d love to see longer trains but the cost to lengthen the platforms by a carriage on every platform will be astronomical.

Latest figures also seem to suggest that the London Underground is improving.

For the four-week period from October 16 to November 12 London Underground operated 97.5 per cent of scheduled kilometres, an improvement of one per cent on the previous period.

Improvement comes at a cost (to our wallets) and while it takes time, enjoying a more efficient ride will be worth it.

Tell us what you think. Have you been harshly affected by the fare rises? Was Boris Johnson wrong to raise fares by so much? Do you trust either of hiss main mayoral rivals, Ken Livingstone and Brian Paddick, to do a better job keeping public transport fares down? Add your comments below.

Got a transport issue or something else you want to get off your chest? Email your opinions to London24 editor Simon Bull at simon.bull@archant.co.uk and your rant could appear on our site.

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