BBC blew £350,000 of licence-fee payers’ cash on unused taxis, train fares and hotel stays

The BBC has been slammed for blowing an eye-watering £350,000 on unused taxis, train fares and hotel stays in the last five years alone, figures have revealed. 

The broadcaster spent more than £273,000 on 5,455 train tickets, £64,800 on 600 hotel rooms and £25,000 on 1,631 taxi journeys – all of which were unused by its globetrotting staff.

The BBC – which is primary funded by a £157.50 TV licence fee – was unable to get any of the £6,000 it spent per month back as a refund. 

Newly-appointed BBC director-general Tim Davie pledged to ‘keep a focus on cost reduction’ when he took over the role in September.

The corporation scrapped free TV licences for all over-75s in August – leaving those who don’t receive pension credit forced to pay full price.

The BBC (BBC Broadcasting House, pictured) has been slammed for blowing an eye-watering £350,000 on unused taxis, train fares and hotel stays in the last five years alone, figures have revealed 

Andrew Allison – the head of campaigns at pressure group Freedom Association – told The Star: ‘The BBC shows little regard for licence fee payers’ money and these figures highlight that. 

‘For as long as it gets its funding from a compulsory telly tax, nothing will change.’

The BBC said cancelling travel is often inevitable given the nature of its 24-hour global operation.

On average, the cost of an unused taxi journey is £15, a cancelled train far is £50 and an abandoned hotel stay is £100.

Most train tickets – except for advanced fares – are refundable if plans change, the corporation added. 

Newly-appointed BBC director-general Tim Davie (pictured) pledged to 'keep a focus on cost reduction' when he took over the role in September

Newly-appointed BBC director-general Tim Davie (pictured) pledged to ‘keep a focus on cost reduction’ when he took over the role in September

A BBC spokesperson said: ”As a 24-hour international broadcaster, a significant amount of travel in 2019/20 was inevitable and the nature of our work means plans can often change at short notice. 

‘We have strict policies in place for essential travel and expenses in order to keep costs as low as possible and ensure the best value for money. 

‘This accounts for a fraction of the cost of providing free TV licences for over 75s – which at £745m a year and rising would lead to significant cuts to the programmes and services which our audiences love.’

Next Page