London business leaders back flexible rail tickets

Research released today by London Chamber of Commerce and Industry shows four in five business leaders back the wider introduction of flexible rail season tickets in the capital, supporting the ongoing mix of workplace and home working.

Carried out for LCCI by Savanta ComRes, the polling* asked 503 London business leaders from companies of varying size, sectors and boroughs in the capital how they were responding to Covid-19.

83% of those polled supported the wider introduction of flexible rail season ticket options to make part-office commuting/part-working from home more cost-effective.

The backing for more flexible rail tickets comes as the polling highlighted that nearly half (47%) of London business leaders have required staff to work from home to enable social distancing in the workplace.  55% said they have encouraged it where possible.

For those heading into the workplace, 38% of business leaders have adopted flexible shifts in order to enable social distancing, whilst one in five (21%) business leaders have different teams coming into the office at different times/days.

Commenting on these findings, Richar Burge, Chief Executive of London Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said:

“Our polling shows businesses being creative and flexible in their approach to managing Covid-19 workplace restrictions, and they want to see the same when it comes to rail season ticket options for their employees. 

“LCCI believe that the wider introduction of carnet or part-week rail tickets for use across the TfL and London suburban rail networks is important during these times of a mix of London office and home working days.

Both now and beyond this crisis they also support part-time and job share employees, in a way that many current season ticket options don’t.

“It’s time that the Government and rail companies accelerated the timetable for the arrival of these ticket options.”


*Savanta ComRes interviewed 503 London business leaders online between 6 August and 11 September 2020.

Data were weighted to be representative of all London business leaders by size and broad industry sector. Savanta ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.

Question: How long do you predict it will be before the majority of your employees return to your office/workplace for the majority of the time?

  • 35%: Not applicable - we mostly worked remotely / not from an office even before lockdown.
  • 17%: In 2021.
  • 12%: The majority of our employees have already returned.
  • 11%: By the end of 2020.
  • 6%: Not applicable - we do not anticipate the majority of people returning for the majority of their time / have given up a permanent commercial office / workplace.
  • 4%: Within the next 2 months.
  • 3%: 2022 or later.
  • 2%: Within the next month.
  • Don’t know: 9%.

Question: Which of the following measures, if any, has or will your business adopt regarding work patterns, to enable social distancing at the workplace?

Encouraging working from home where possible:  have done this 55% / Will do this 14% / Will not do this 19% / Don’t know 12%.

Flexible work shifts:  have done this 38% / Will do this 22% / Will not do this 25% / Don’t know 16%.

Requiring staff to work from home:  have done this 47% / Will do this 10% / Will not do this 23% / Don’t know 19%.

Requiring face masks to be worn:  have done this 35% / Will do this 18% / Will not do this 30% / Don’t know 16%.

No longer having an office, with all staff working from home:  have done this 36% / Will do this 11% / Will not do this 30% / Don’t know 24%.

Restricting or banning meetings:  have done this 30% / Will do this 15% / Will not do this 37% / Don’t know 28%.

Different teams coming into work at different times / days:  have done this 21% / Will do this 18% / Will not do this 39% / Don’t know 22%.

Question: Introducing a flexible season ticket that would make part-office/part-working from home more cost-effective for commuters:

Support 83%.  Oppose 10%.