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2016 National Retired Members Conference
3 June 2016

Conference is concerned to learn that the rail industry is planning to replace paper train tickets with smartphone technology within three years and the impact this will have on older/elderly travellers who it is feared will be subsidising younger generations. Campaign group Railfuture has warned that elderly people who do not have smartphones and will still buy tickets face paying higher fares than those who have adopted the new technology as anyone still wanting a paper train ticket will be charged more than those using the new contactless method.

Conference agrees this will be discriminatory and will adversely affect a demographic, older/elderly people, who are least likely to have/use smartphones, and despite having senior railcards, will be paying more than their younger counterparts for the same journeys.

It is understood that the proposed technology, known as m-tickets, will also be available with contactless bank cards so the affects may be mitigated given that more older/elderly people may have these, nevertheless it is important that the rail industry takes account of its older travellers and does not introduce initiatives which will disadvantage them financially in any way.

Conference therefore instructs the National Retired Members’ Committee to liaise with the National Executive Council, National Pensioners’ Convention, Scottish Pensioners’ Forum and other relevant bodies to ensure that the impact of ticketless travel on all sectors of the travelling public is taken into account and that elderly travellers are not financially disadvantaged by this proposal and report back to Retired Members’ Conference 2017.