EPF’s UK-member Transport Focus conducted a study in August this year to understand what matters most to British rail passengers and where investments should be targeted. Over 15,000 people participated in this research, which also dives into topics like punctuality and reliability, improvements and engineering works, and accessibility.

More specifically, 12,565 rail passengers who had travelled by train in the previous 12 months were asked to identify their preferences from a list of 25 options.

Below were their top 3 priorities:

  1. Price and value of the tickets
  2. Reliability and punctuality
  3. Frequency

An additional sample of 2,661 people, who had not travelled by rail in the previous 12 months, were also asked what might encourage them to do so again. Results were similar in this case.

From this extensive study, we can conclude that what matters most to passengers is a punctual and reliable rail service, which offers tickets at a fair price. While the research focuses on the British experience, results may also be recognisable in other national contexts.

Read the in-depth results, or perform a custom data analysis with Transport Focus’s ‘simulator tool’: https://www.transportfocus.org.uk/publication/britains-railway-what-matters-to-passengers/