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Penalty fares

If you can’t produce a valid ticket for your full journey, you may be charged a Penalty Fare. Learn the rules and see what a Penalty Fare might cost you.

Why we use this scheme

When a small percentage of people travel without paying, it adds up – the railway loses an estimated £500m every year through ticketless travel and fraud. That’s a lot of money that could be spent for maintenance, staff and improvements. And it’s very unfair for our honest, paying passengers.

We are committed to making sure that all passenger journeys made with us are paid for.

How much is a Penalty Fare?

A Penalty Fare works out to either £20 or twice the full single fare applicable to the next station at which your train stops (whichever is the greater amount).

In addition, if you choose to continue on the train after paying the Penalty Fare, you may be charged the full single fare to your destination station.

When can I be charged with a Penalty Fare?

You may have to pay a Penalty Fare if you:

  • Travel without a valid ticket
  • Are unable to produce an appropriate Railcard for a discount ticket
  • Travel in First Class accommodation with a Standard ticket
  • Are aged 16 or over, travelling on a child rate ticket
  • Travel beyond the destination on your ticket.

More about Penalty Fares

We’ve prepared a leaflet with a full explanation of Penalty Fares along with a map that shows the stations that are exempt from this scheme.

Download the Penalty Fares leaflet

If you are a disabled passenger, and are unable to easily purchase a ticket at the station where the journey starts, then the appropriate fare, including discount if applicable, can be paid en route without penalty.

Read the fine print

Here we share our revenue protection policies so that you can be sure we deal with everyone fairly and consistently