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Old 20th March 2017, 23:06   #16
47271
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Sorry to wade in here when I have zero knowledge of Welsh train services or geography, or anything else for that matter, but if I was being put out to this extent by Scotrail failing to carry me then I'd be expecting them to make a special stop or provide me with a taxi from the nearest calling point to my home station, or even to my door. And I would stand over someone in an office until it happened, I've done it at Perth station quite a few times.

If Welsh language is the only way to get the attention of anyone who has the first clue then could you get a native speaker to give them a talking to on your behalf?
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Old 21st March 2017, 08:13   #17
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You'd have thought they'd at least put on replacement buses between LLJ and Conwy/Penmaenmawr and Llanfairfechan or can they get away with not doing so because they are request stops?
According to traveline.info, there's a bus scheduled to leave Llandudno Junction for Bangor at 21:03, which should reach Llanfairfechan at 21:27. That should be an option if ATW don't sort something out for you.

It's not as useful for anyone hoping to travel from Llanfairfechan to Anglesey.
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Old 21st March 2017, 10:28   #18
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According to traveline.info, there's a bus scheduled to leave Llandudno Junction for Bangor at 21:03, which should reach Llanfairfechan at 21:27. That should be an option if ATW don't sort something out for you.

It's not as useful for anyone hoping to travel from Llanfairfechan to Anglesey.
Thanks, I was considering getting bus from LLJ, but it would need to be the 10.03 bus and I'd probably fall asleep and end up in Bangor... That's the problem with getting the 22.04 from Chester, I might fall asleep and end up in Holyhead!

I've just had to take a decision to cancel work at a cost to myself (I'm self employed so lose both money and client goodwill potentially) get the 17.50 and hope this ludicrous situation doesn't arise again for a long time.

I can cope with essential works, reroutes, disasters, but the lack of information from Arriva was the most frustrating element - I have sent in a formal complaint via their website and asked that they make it clear on their journey disruption page that these stops will not be called at as usual on that service, hopefully this will help prevent people rocking up to Chester with open tickets or season passes, and either finding they have to wait for 1.5 hours, or worse sleepwalking onto their usual train and ending up stranded in Holyhead when they live in the middle of Anglesey! It might even save Arriva a load of hassle if they sort this out and staff actually know what their own service disruptions are, I believe someone has pointed this thread out to them on Twitter... It's probably too much to ask that they put on buses for those people but I hope they would.

The biggest question is why someone on a forum can answer the question in 5 minutes but the TOC themselves had no idea!
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Old 21st March 2017, 14:15   #19
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I have no idea if this is related to the other goings on, but I seem to have woken up in some kind of train travel Twilight Zone this week.

First I couldn't book my usual train on Monday 27th except by split ticketing manually as no tickets were available, and then this whole issue with the missing 20.34 on 29th.

However doing a little more digging just now, I realise I may have made a mistake doing the manual split ticketing thing.

I went on Arriva App to check and still no tickets available so went on nationalrail and looked at my 12.07 Llanfairfechan to Manchester Piccadilly journey. For some reason it was forcing me to go via Crewe and and pay full anytime fare £33. If I selected avoid Crewe, it offered me journey via LLJ at £15.50 advance fare.

So I went on Trainline and selected same journey, all it offered was £33 full fare via Crewe. Selected avoid Crewe and there was my £15.50 advance fare back via LLJ. I thought these sites were designed to offer the cheapest ticket first?

Clearly if the train can pick me up at Llanfairfechan to go to Crewe it isn't an issue with the train being unable to stop at a smaller station, and according to the Arriva site there is disruption to late night trains between Llandudno nd Chester but not in middle of day, but I can't seem to see any reason why I am being forced to go via Crewe and pay full fare that day? (Well not that I am, but I am concerned there is something sinister going on and I will end up at LLJ to find a 3 hour journey on a bus awaiting me...)

If only hadn't been panicked about the 29th train issue, I might have thought to select avoid Crewe when buying my Monday 27th ticket and not end up buying a £15.50 advance from LLJ PLUS a £5.70 single from LLanfairfechan to LLJ

The whole issue is becoming extremely confusing, I've got through an entire winter without any such issues, not sure why all this is happening now?!

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Old 21st March 2017, 14:33   #20
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The Journey Planner is offering the quickest route, this is not necessarily the cheapest route.

By going via Crewe you arrive in Manchester at 1449, compared to 1452 if you change at Llandudno Jn, which is why the system doesn't show that option.
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Old 21st March 2017, 15:37   #21
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The Journey Planner is offering the quickest route, this is not necessarily the cheapest route.

By going via Crewe you arrive in Manchester at 1449, compared to 1452 if you change at Llandudno Jn, which is why the system doesn't show that option.
I get that - but in my experience the ticket outlets such as trainline usually offer a selection of options. I've always been able to go on the Arriva App and get an advance from Llanfairfechan to Manchester, but that option seems to have disappeared for the day in question. And it doesn't have a avoid/via option.

I've been doing this journey at the same time on the same day for several months and it's always given me the LLJ option. Is there a Virgin timetable change from Crewe perhaps which results in that now being quicker and hence being the journey that comes up first now?

ETA - if I select Monday April 3rd or after, it goes back to LLJ with an available advance fare. This is why I am confused. Why is it this one week, Monday 27th, where it is doing something completely different to any other week?

My concern is I am going to walk down to Llanfairfechan station and find that there is some other mysterious unannounced Arriva change like the one with the timetable on the 29th and I will end up stranded and ineligible for any compensation because I was only able to buy an Anytime single for that journey! What does the app know with its "unavailable tickets" that nobody else is letting on?!

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Old 21st March 2017, 15:49   #22
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Is it possibly because of daylight saving time change that Monday?!
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Old 21st March 2017, 17:14   #23
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Were you given a Case Reference number? I work on the C/R department so I can chase it up when I get to the office if you wish?
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Old 21st March 2017, 23:06   #24
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I'll PM it tomorrow.

My Monday 27th timetable woes may be explained by more trains moving around/reroutes as on Monday 27th the Llanfairfechan train is going direct to Crewe wheareas normally it would be change at Chester then Crewe, hence I think why the journey planner then reverts back to the normal LLJ as the option, as going ia Chester then Crewe still gets there earlier by 3 minutes, but has more changes?
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Old 21st March 2017, 23:23   #25
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At the very least Arriva Trains Wales could offer ticket availability on the scheduled buses between the Junction and Llanfairfechan, operated by ... er Arriva!
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Old 21st March 2017, 23:26   #26
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Are you sure that the cost of lost work to you will not be greater than the cost of a taxi from LLandudno Junction to your home? Can you get some quotes for a pre-booking? You can mitigate the risk of falling asleep by setting an alarm on your phone for 15 minutes before your stop's time surely?
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Old 21st March 2017, 23:56   #27
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If you need to use the app to book tickets, a ticket to Manchester Oxford Road would continue to give the Warrington route. I think the ticket would be to "Manchester Stations", meaning that it would still be valid as far as Manchester Piccadilly.

Last edited by kieron; 21st March 2017 at 23:59.
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Old 22nd March 2017, 00:35   #28
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If you need to use the app to book tickets, a ticket to Manchester Oxford Road would continue to give the Warrington route. I think the ticket would be to "Manchester Stations", meaning that it would still be valid as far as Manchester Piccadilly.
I use the Trainline app when the Arriva app fails. Some of the other apps are quite daft as they don't seem to offer mobile tickets, if I am in Llanfairfechan and book a ticket from Llanfairfechan on some apps they offer a paper ticket and advise me to travel to a station with a ticket machine to collect my tickets before travel I use the apps etc because I can usually get Advance Singles for £13.50 with mobilel tickets - a massive saving on the off peak return fares.

I have sorted this particular issue in terms of practicalities, my gripe is that no notice was given of a planned service reduction/removal, there was no mention of this on the ATW website, and if this can happen once without warning it can happen again, even now there are people who will be caught totally unawares by this I expect and I was lucky I didnt have a bunch of open returns I was thinking of using for that journey as I wouldn't have thought to check ahead (since they put the prices up yet again, I have never bought an open return again, so that's one good thing!)

I've also emailed nationalrail as the nationalrail website shows the 20.34 Chester to Holyhead as a big green tick with no disruptions, when the service is actually running a reduced/different timetable from the published one. If it had just said the service was running a reduced timetable due to engineering works or some such, this entire saga might have been avoided lol! I don't know if it's supposed to indicate that sort of scenario but it would be helpful!
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Old 22nd March 2017, 10:05   #29
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Quite by ironic coincidence, Arriva's Passenger Information During Disruption Local Plan seems to be extensively delayed and the link from the Arriva website times out!
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Old 22nd March 2017, 11:02   #30
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I'll tweet alright, like I said I can get the 17.50 but it might lose me work.

I tweeted today and was told to ring the customer service number, 3 calls to India later I finally got put through to Wales and they didn't know either! I'll be calling again tomorrow as well!

For me it's an inconvenience, but for someone expecting to travel on that service on the day and not being informed in advance in any way, it could be a significant problem!

You'd have thought they'd at least put on replacement buses between LLJ and Conwy/Penmaenmawr and Llanfairfechan or can they get away with not doing so because they are request stops? Mind you there were replacement buses out to Deganwy today and that's a request stop. People can't just get taxis etc in a rural area...
That's not entirely true, there's a taxi office at the entrance to Llandudno Junction station (Roger's Taxis, 01492 572224 if you wanted to book in advance or call to see how much they'd charge. I've used them a lot in the past as I used to live in Deganwy)

It's an additional expense though I appreciate.

The 20:34 from Chester is due to arrive Llandudno Junction at 21:22, there's a bus (the number 5) from Llandudno Junction station to Bangor via Llanfairfechan but unfortunately it's only hourly and there's a long wait til 22:03 for it.

I wondered if going to Bangor would be more convenient. Unfortunately there too the bus is awkward - you'd arrive at 21:40 but the bus is at 22:15 from the town centre bus station, which is a bit of trek from the station. Bangor's also slightly longer away from Llanfairfechan than Llandudno Junction (11 vs 9 miles, which surprised me, I expected it to be closer)

Good luck and hope perhaps some of that is of some use!
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