The penalty for fare evasion on the Tyne and Wear Metro will increase to £100 from January 23.
The Department for Transport (DfT) has decided the penalty for rail fare evasion in England and Wales is to rise as of part a new effort to crackdown on ticketless travel across Britain’s railways.
Metro is part of the government’s national penalty fare regime so it is included in the change.
Nexus is rolling-out a hard-hitting marketing campaign on Metro stations and trains to warn customers of the value in paying their fares on every single journey.
From Monday January 23 anyone who without a valid Metro ticket will have to pay a £100 penalty fare, however, this is reduced to £50 if paid within 21 days.
Nexus said the higher penalty fare will ensure there is a more effective deterrent against ticketless travel.
Fare evasion on the Tyne and Wear Metro costs Nexus £1m a year in lost revenue.
Customer Services Director at Nexus, Huw Lewis, said: “The Government is raising the penalty fare from £20 to £100 and this change will automatically apply on Metro from Monday January 23.
“Metro is part of the government’s national penalty fare regime covering train companies across the whole country.
“This is the first change since 2005 and reflects feedback from customers who want to see a strong deterrent against fraud. Anyone who is issued with a £100 penalty fare will pay £50 if it is paid with 21 days of it being issued.
“The government consulted the whole rail industry and Nexus was among those keen to see an increase, because customers tell us they want tougher penalties for those who decide not to pay their fare.
“The simple message for Metro customers is to pay your fare every time you travel.”
The penalty for Metro fare evasion, which is set by the Government, has been at £20 since May 2005.
Under the current rules anyone who gets caught without a ticket is issued with a £20 penalty fare.
Anyone who fails to pay the penalty fare will be taken to court, where a conviction results in much steeper fines. Failure to pay the penalty fare will result in prosecution.
Nexus has withdrawn the facility for customers to Metro penalty fares on the spot.
Card payments will instead be taken online at payments.nexus.org.uk or by calling Nexus’ 24 hour automated payment line on 0191 814 7699.
Customers can still pay Metro penalty fares in person at the reception at South Gosforth Metro Control Centre or by post Customer Relations, Metro Control Centre, Station Road, South Gosforth, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE3 1YT. Cheque or Postal Orders made payable to ‘Nexus’, with the Penalty Fare Notice enclosed.
Photo credit: Nexus