Friday, 19 June 2009

The Javelin train vs. the Indian train

Hitachi high speed train

A 140mph Javelin train at London's St Pancras International. Photograph: Johnny Green/PA

Britain's first high-speed commuter rail service was unveiled today as a Javelin train ferried travellers from London's St Pancras station at 140mph.

Normally a plodding journey lasting almost an hour and a half, the trip to Ashford takes 37 minutes on a Javelin as it speeds along the £5.7bn High Speed One line that carries passengers to Paris and Brussels. In fact, it is so much quicker than the average commute that Southeastern has decided against a trolley service on the presumption that passengers will barely have time to contemplate breakfast before pulling in to St Pancras.

Passengers will have to pay more for the privilege of the swifter commute. Southeastern will charge £24.30 for a return fare from Ebbsfleet to St Pancras – an increase of 34% on the current service. A weekly travelcard from Ashford to St Pancras will be 20% more expensive than the current service, at £113.40 a week.

Holy Cow! £24.30 for a return fare. That's £12.15 one way, or £0.14/mile (12.15 /(37/60*140))

In India, by comparison, you can travel from Delhi to Calcutta (a distance of 811 miles) for about £6 sleeper class.

That's nearly 20 times per mile cheaper than the Javelin.

Are we being hard done by or what?!!!!!


wankongyew said...

Eh, that doesn't sound so expensive to me. That's about the cost of the express train to the international airport in Kuala Lumpur and that's only a journey of slightly less than an hour.