Ticket prices for high-speed TGVs, TER and Intercity trains may increase for a second time this year as the tolls train companies pay to access the rail network increase, reports the French daily newspaper Le Parisien.
SNCF Réseau, the company that manages the rail network, last month increased the tolls that trains will have to pay next year. The hike is 7.6% for TGV and Intercity trains and 8% for the regional TER ones. These tolls will increase by 4% in 2025 and 2026.
These charges represent 70% of SNCF Réseau’s funding to maintain the tracks. An SNCF Réseau representative told Le Parisien that inflation is up on its worksites due to the significant increase in raw material prices.
However, SNCF Réseau also needs to balance the books in 2024, a promise made to the French state when the latter took on shares and a €35 million debt.
An SNCF Voyageur administrator said tolls represent 40% of SNCF ticket prices, so there will “inevitably” be consequences.
To pay these increased tolls, French train operator SNCF may cut the number of trains running to focus on the most profitable lines.