Open up rail ticket booking to third parties | Letters
Dave Ashton of Loco2 calls for access to data for comparison sites, while Sheila Cross thinks only nationalisation can create harmonisation of fares
Modernising the rail ticketing system is a positive step (Rail industry prepares for season ticket cull in fares shake-up, 8 May), but it won’t help UK rail appeal to passengers choosing to drive or fly to locations already well-served by rail.
There is a larger problem: rail’s relative lack of third-party booking services. Few travel comparison engines sell rail tickets because operators restrict easy access to data, have antiquated information systems that act as de facto technical barriers, and discourage distribution partnerships with low distribution commissions – all due to a misguided belief that direct sales engender higher margins and keep prices low.
Source: Guardian Transport
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