A number of rail fares are no longer affordable for some businesses, it has been claimed.
Anthony Smith, the chief executive of rail watchdog Passenger Focus, believes that the latest charges for some of the country's peak-time rail fares are beyond the affordability of some small to medium-sized enterprises and charities.
In some locations around the country, new year rail fare increases have occurred at a rate of up to 11 per cent.
"The types of fares we are seeing now for some peak time travel are probably not the type where the cost could be charged back to the client or that added to costs," said Mr Smith.
"This is inflationary pressure at the same time as a credit squeeze," he added.
On average, however, regulated ticket prices have increased by 4.8 per cent.
Price increases have been justified by operators on the basis that additional funds are needed to finance engineering work.