One consumer’s protest in England is making news – but I’m not sure it’ll make a difference.
A man put off by the cost of a train fare bought a car and drove from London to Bristol for less than the price of the rail fare.
Bargain-hunter Tom Church bought a Honda Civic to make a 120-mile drive to see a friend in Bristol because it was cheaper than a train ticket.
The second hand car cost just £80 [currently about US $114]. Road tax was £81.38 [$116], insurance for one day £20.43 [$29] and petrol £25 [$36]. A total of £206.81 [$295].
Meanwhile, peak-time return train tickets between London and Bristol cost between £210 – £218.10 [$299 – $311].
. . .
[Mr. Church said] “At the end of the trip, I still have a car. I’ll probably sell it again. After some TLC, I think I can get £200 [$285]. You get your unused road tax refunded so I might even be in profit! That’s real bargain hunting for you.”
There’s more at the link.
It’s a great idea, and good for some anti-rail-greed publicity; but will the rail company listen? I doubt it. There are too many others who won’t take a stand, and they know it. They’re relying on consumers being sheep to be fleeced. Airline companies in the USA do the same. They treat us like cattle, to be stuffed into their overcrowded aluminum tubes and all too frequently treated like dirt, because they know most consumers either don’t have any choice but to put up with it, or won’t stand up for decent treatment. Those of us who choose to drive almost everywhere within range, rather than be treated like that, they can afford to disregard, because not enough of us will take such a stand.
(I couldn’t help but note that the road tax formed no less than 39.35% of Mr. Church’s outlay, and more than that if one considers the tax included in his purchase of fuel. Big Brother gets its whack, one way or another!)