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Southern records its lowest ever score in annual passenger survey

Best and worst train companies revealed

train delays

Which? is calling for the rail industry to deliver a better service for passengers 

Southern Rail suffered its worst ever score in the latest Which? customer satisfaction survey.

Following months of disruption, Southern achieved a dismal score of just 21%, receiving one-star ratings for punctuality, reliability, seat availability, frequency and value for money. One year ago it received an overall customer score of 44%.

Almost half (46%) of the customers surveyed this time reported that their last journey with Southern was delayed. At two stars, the highest mark it received was for the availability and cleanliness of its toilets and general condition of the carriages.

Our survey of over 2,000 commuter experiences also found:

  • Southeastern was second from bottom with a rating of just 31%. It scored one star for seat availability.
  • Thameslink and Great Northern came third from the bottom with 32%, scoring one star for frequency and the condition of their carriages.
  • At the top of the table, five-star ratings for reliability and frequency helped put Merseyrail into first place with a customer score of 72%.
  • Virgin Trains West Coast came second with a five-star rating for reliability.
  • East Midland Trains is placed third with four-star scores for punctuality, reliability and frequency.

Find out more: best and worst train companies – see the full results of our survey

Which? demands better rail service

With passengers enduring a winter of misery on the railways, Which? has today launched a campaign taking the industry to task on unacceptable services that don’t deliver even the basics for long suffering passengers.

We are calling for: 

  • train companies to respect passenger rights and comply with the law
  • the regulator to be given real teeth to hold the rail industry to account
  • the government to swiftly bring forward reforms that put passengers first

Vickie Sheriff, Which? director of campaigns and communications, said: ‘After months of disruption, it’s no surprise to see Southern at the bottom of our customer satisfaction survey. 

‘Though Southern have performed particularly badly this year, the whole sector is continually failing passengers. Overcrowding, delays, short trains, carriages in poor condition – many services aren’t providing even the basics. Enough is enough – we need rail services that finally deliver for their passengers.’

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