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TfL plans for 15% Congestion Charge hike

Under the current system, the daily Congestion Charge stands at £10 (£9 if paid using CC Auto Pay or £12 if paid the next charging day) with the cost of the charge falling in real terms over this period. TfL is now proposing an increase to the daily charge – to £11.50 if paid in advance (or on the day); £10.50 if paid using CC Auto Pay or £14 if paid the next charging day.

The transport authority said the proposed increase would help ‘maintain the deterrent effect of the charge in reducing unnecessary journeys and brings it in line with inflation when compared with other transport costs and public transport fares which have increased over time’.

Other changes that Londoners will be consulted on include enabling CC Auto Pay customers to pay via Direct Debit – in addition to the existing option of paying with a registered debit or credit card; the introduction of a simple online registration process for discounts; moving away from postal and phone registration and introducing reimbursements for charges paid via CC Auto Pay by NHS patients and staff.

TfL said that it anticipates an increase in traffic levels within the Congestion Charging zone if the changes aren’t implemented. It added that increasing the charge would generate an estimated £84m of additional revenue by the end of 2017/18 with any net revenue generated being invested in improvements to London's transport as required by law. 

Garrett Emmerson, TfL’s chief operating officer for Surface Transport, said: ‘We are keen to hear what Londoners and motorists have to say about the proposed changes to the Congestion Charging scheme. The proposed changes will ensure the Congestion Charge remains an effective deterrent to making unnecessary journeys in central London.

‘We do listen to the views of our customers and have made significant changes to the scheme in recent years, including the removal of the Western Extension and the introduction of the hugely popular Congestion Charging (CC) Auto Pay system.’

The 10-week public consultation closes on Friday 14th March 2014 with London Mayor Boris Johnson then to make a decision on the proposals.

More information on the consultation, including the supporting documents, is available on TfL’s website at: www.tfl.gov.uk/ccyourviews.  

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.