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Most cost-effective London commuter towns revealed

By Ed McConnell

The most cost-effective London commuter towns in Kent have been revealed.

Those travelling into the capital from Ashford can expect to fork out £14,164 a year on season tickets, rent and hours spent commuting, based on an average hourly pay of £17.30.

The town is followed by Gillingham (£15,369) and Gravesend (£17,323) on the list of 30 key commuter towns in the south east.

The table combines average rent, season ticket prices and time spent travelling
The table combines average rent, season ticket prices and time spent travelling

At the other end of the spectrum, those commuting from Oxford can expect to pay £33,113, while locally the most expensive town is Maidstone (£19,511).

The figures were released as some commuters face up to paying an extra £310 a year for rail season tickets thanks to the recent 3.6% fare hike.

An accompanying survey found 10% of passengers never got a seat and 79% felt trapped into paying higher fees due to there being little alternative.

Kevin Pratt, consumer affairs expert at MoneySuperMarket which commissioned the research, said: “People who are time-poor may be happy to live in a costlier but closer commuter town, while those whose monthly outgoings are stretched might be happy to spend more time travelling if it saves money overall.”

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