Why the ticket fares between Basingstoke and Winchester are more expensive than other with the travel time?

Since last Summer, I commute every day between those cities, and I was surprised to see how expensive it is. Not only in the single or return tickets, but also with the season tickets.

I've compared vs. two other cities on the same line and at similar distances of each other (Southampton and Fleet), and the difference is huge.

Here are a few numbers:

Basingstoke-Winchester (travel time: 15-17 min)

  • Anytime day return: £9.70
  • Off-peak day return: £9.60 (1% discount vs anytime)
  • 7-day season ticket: £48.20 (29% discount vs. buying per day)
  • Monthly season ticket: £185.10 (36% discount vs. buying a ticket per day)

Basingstoke-Fleet (travel time: 12-20 min)

  • Anytime day return: £7.10
  • Off-peak day return: £6.90 (3% discount vs any time)
  • 7-day season ticket: £32.90 (34% discount vs. buying per day)
  • Monthly season ticket: £126.40 (41% discount vs. buying a ticket per day)

Southampton-Winchester (travel time: 15-17 min)

  • Anytime day return: £7.30
  • Off-peak day return: £7.20 (1% discount vs any time)
  • 7-day season ticket: £29.60 (42% discount vs. buying per day)
  • Monthly season ticket: £113.70 (48% discount vs. buying a ticket per day)

In short, similar routes are:

  • At least 24% cheaper on anytime day tickets 
  • At least 32% cheaper on 7-day season tickets
  • At least 32% cheaper on monthly season tickets

I can't find any reason why these huge differences: it can't be the distance in miles, travel time, nor distance to London (as Fleet is closer to London)

Is there a way to fix this?

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  • Hi,

    As we are mainly a commuter railway, demand for certain journeys during peak times is understandably very high.

    To try and make travel on every route as attractive as possible and to fill vacant seats, we generally offer lower fares for journeys less used. This quite often means that there are different prices for different directions/ journeys.

    There is no formal relationship in pricing between Anytime Day or Off-Peak Day prices with season ticket prices, hence this may vary for different journeys.

    I am sorry that this causes frustration to travellers such as yourself, however, we do need to adopt different pricing policies for each market. This will produce some inconsistencies.

    Kind Regards,

    Joseph B

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