RADICAL plans to overhaul the UK's rail fares system have been praised by Basingstoke's MP.

The Rail Delivery Group has published its report Easier Fares for All, which sets out how the ticketing system can be overhauled, to ensure that rail passengers only pay for what they need and are always charged the best value fare.

This includes introducing pay-as-you-go pricing and a ‘tap-in tap-out’ system with a weekly capping, meaning that commuters who currently buy weekly season tickets could save money when they travel fewer than five days a week, or are able to travel off-peak.

The proposals would also eliminate the ‘cliff edge’ between peak and off-peak, which would help to reduce the overcrowding currently seen on the first off-peak trains.

A reformed fares system would help make the most of technology, like online accounts and smart ticketing.

Basingstoke MP Maria Miller said: “The current fares system is outdated and unfair, and I welcome the proposals from the Rail Delivery Group, who clearly understand the need for change. The proposals would transform the current system, and with the rapid rise in flexible working it’s important we have a ticketing system that reflects the way modern businesses operate.”

“I know from talking to rail users locally that these changes are long overdue, and I will be pressing the Government to look very positively at these proposals and ensure that change happens swiftly.”