West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper has called on Trading Standards to consider whether Trainline should be selling Merseyrail tickets, after constituents have reported being unable to print their pre-purchased ticket at Ormskirk Station and then received a fine upon arriving in Liverpool Central.
One constituent of Rosie’s, a 13-year-old girl, was fined despite being able to show proof of purchasing a ticket online. When she appealed, providing evidence of the purchase, Merseyrail upheld the fine saying she was required to have produced a physical ticket.
Rosie Cooper MP said:
“Plenty of other train services accept e-tickets, why don’t Merseyrail? People that have purchased online will understandably be surprised to receive a fine when there was no ticket machine to print it and can give evidence of the purchase on their phone.
“Why are Merseyrail allowing Trainline to sell tickets online if they don’t accept them? If they are insisting on the ticket being printed at a station, why are my constituents still finding themselves unable to print them before getting on the train?
“What is even more surprising is that Merseyrail then stand by their decision on appeal even when given evidence of a ticket purchase! Trading Standards need to consider whether both Merseyrail and Trainline are setting customers up to be fined by selling their tickets online. This is blatantly unfair and needs resolving quickly.
“There needs to be a common-sense approach to fines, not a blanket policy that fails to take into account the lack of ticket printing capability.”