Additional single ticket - am I entitled to compensation?

Discussion in 'Disputes & Prosecutions' started by Manchester27, 3 Dec 2018.

  1. robbeech

    robbeech Established Member

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    I would always try to use a paper ticket for these types of journey. I only usually use mobile tickets for short SDR or CDR tickets. Of course as things move on and retailers can use better methods of making this work then I’m happy to use other methods.
     
  2. Silverdale

    Silverdale Member

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    I do the same. I used to purchase tickets from XC, but now they charge for collecting a paper ticket from a machine and only offer an m-ticket free of charge, I purchase from other retailers.
     
  3. Belperpete

    Belperpete Member

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    Just a thought, but are you using a fully up-to-date version of the app?

    If the expiry mechanism is built into the app on the phone, then any change to the expiry mechanism would need the app updating on the phone.
     
  4. snail

    snail Established Member

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    I've actually given up on apps apart from Advance tickets or singles because it seems a lottery as to what you are offered. VT rarely offer collect at station, Northern and TPE are similar but their websites work the other way and often only allow collect at station! I think I know what I am doing, it's no surprise that less experienced travellers run into problems.
     
  5. robbeech

    robbeech Established Member

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    So. An update to confirm having done a little sacrificial test.

    Trainline app. iOS version (very latest).

    Purchasing an off peak return (SVR) and activating the return portion on a particular day sends the ticket grey and brings up the used ticket sign after what I assume to be 0429 on the next day. It stays orange after 0000 but at 0646 it is grey.

    All the ticket details are still visible, the barcode is still there to be scanned (I’m not sure whether the data has changed).
    When a ticket runs out of validity it becomes what is known as EXPIRED rather than used.

    Trainline and it seems other apps need to address this urgently but more importantly guards need to learn how to read m-tickets.
    Your main point of contact should be Virgin Trains as the guard has failed to accept a valid ticket. Whilst it seems ticket office staff at Edinburgh have started this saga by activating the return portion of the ticket, they have in no way invalidated the ticket. Lots of improvement needed from staff here.
     
  6. talldave

    talldave Established Member

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    So how is the open return portion's expiry meant to be handled, to prevent multiple use?

    Paper tickets can be clipped, magstripe marked and/or swallowed by a barrier. What's the app equivalent?

    As an engineer, I'd be using the geolocation of the phone to detect the usage.
     
  7. Manchester27

    Manchester27 Member

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    So Trainline have got back to me with the following:

    I am sorry to know that your tickets were activated earlier and you had to purchase new tickets in order to travelled.
    Under the booking reference number 440865754104 you have booked Off-Peak Return tickets travelling from:-
    [​IMG]
    I wish to inform you that the ticket that you have booked is a refundable ticket subject to less £10.00 admin fee, however an activated tickets are considered to be a used tickets and therefore I regret to inform you that we are unable to request a refund on a activated ticket.
    I would like to inform you that our application also warns you before activating the tickets. Please find the below mentioned screen-shot:-
    [​IMG]
    I also wish to inform you that currently we do not have any reported bugs on our application or on the web-site. As you have mentioned that the station staff may have activated the tickets then you may have to contact them. However in order to help you with the contact details could you please confirm what was the name of the train operating company that was managing that station.
     
  8. ForTheLoveOf

    ForTheLoveOf Established Member

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    What a load of tosh. They cannot attempt to put restrictions on your usage of the ticket, or its refundability, merely by putting in those messages on the activation prompt. The conditions were agreed to in the NRCoT, and there is nothing shown before buying an e- or m-ticket that suggests it is any different.

    In any case, it wasn't you who activated the tickets so they can refer you away all they like - at the end of the day it is one rail industry and they must take responsibility (that's a difficult word for the rail industry to understand, I know) for each other's mistakes, and not push them onto the beleaguered passenger.

    I wouldn't waste a second more with Trainline's eminently inept (and probably outsourced) customer services. Simply do a chargeback on the card transaction by contacting the issuer of the card you used.
     
  9. Haywain

    Haywain Established Member

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    Trainline are correct, in parts. The ticket app appears to be working correctly from what I can remember (I was professionally testing m-Tickets around 12 months ago). When the return portion s activated it should show in orange for the remainder of that day and then in grey on subsequent days. This does not affect the break of journey rights and validity of a period return ticket, although there is an obvious expectation that it won't be activated in advance of the first day of travel. A greyed out ticket can still be scanned and accepted for travel and the scanning software should check if it has been previously used - scan records should have a date/time/location of use.

    As for a refund, Trainline are the 'innocent' party here and the ticket that should be refunded is the one that the Virgin Trains guard insisted you purchase. LNER made a mistake in activating the ticket but this should not have caused you to be charged again. You had a valid ticket and Virgin Trains refused to accept it. I do hope you will take the matter up with VT as they are at fault. If they do not offer a refund then by all means use the chargeback procedures available, but I think going to them in the first instance is the correct way to go.
     
  10. robbeech

    robbeech Established Member

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    I agree that it is Virgin Trains who you need to be speaking to on this matter. Your ticket was activated. Your ticket was valid. Trainline (whilst I don’t agree with the concept of grey tickets and look out for a new thread on it soon) haven’t really done anything wrong here.

    You’ll have a fight on your hands with Virgin as they MAY try to claim some utter drivel about overnight break of journey not being permitted like Northern are currently doing (see above) with myself but do keep us up to date. I’m sure we can provide assistance where required.
     
  11. Haywain

    Haywain Established Member

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    I think it's worth adding that the m-Ticket should (IIRC) show when it was activated. This would be at pretty much the same time your seat reservation coupon was issued which together provide strong evidence that it was mistakenly done by LNER staff.
     
  12. robbeech

    robbeech Established Member

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    It does indeed show the date and time to the nearest minute it was activated.

    It is of course a valid question, but it is one for "the railway" to work out for themselves. It is NOT the customer's problem, or at least shouldn't be. Generally scanning of the barcodes provides a list in the database of dates and times of where it has been scanned and by who or what so there would be evidence and likely an erroneous scan out of place would flag up or reject though i'm not familiar with the workings of this and the difference between M tickets and E tickets barcodes may mean some things work and some don't.
     
  13. robbeech

    robbeech Established Member

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  14. sarahj

    sarahj Established Member

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    Trainline, the sodding bane of my life. Punter: I did not have time to print the ticket/machine was out. Moi: No problem. Give me the code, gets code, ticket printed, punter happy. However, buy the thing on train line and while I can look at the ticket on my tablet, I cannot print the thing off. It wants a card, but with the card, never finds any bookings. No ticket printed, punter miffed. Useless. Trainline get your act together. As on board staff I cannot recommend your product.
     
  15. robbeech

    robbeech Established Member

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    Does it tell you whether the ticket has already been printed even if you can’t print it yourself. If it does then at your discretion I guess you can at least let them travel on your train.
    The question is if they threw a grey “used ticket” screen at you would you charge them for a new ticket or check the validity and Male a decision based on that ? :)
     
  16. sarahj

    sarahj Established Member

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    It just says a card is needed. I allow travel, as I say, I can see the ticket, but that they need to print it off ASAP. It's just a pain as other systems let you print the ticket no problem, sometimes it even prints a collection receipt. But trainline, nahhh.

    As for the used ticket. It's difficult to second guess, as I was not there, but there are easy ways to see if it's a screen shot with a few questions. You have to be open to issues. I was once flying back from Hamburg to Heathrow with BA and the flight was delayed so much my BA app decided that the flight was done and would close. It had happened to others, but other proof was needed.
     
  17. Manchester27

    Manchester27 Member

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    Evening guys,

    So finally some progress with this. LNER got in touch and said the responsibility lay with Virgin.

    Virgin just got in touch today with the following:

    "Thanks for your correspondence regarding your experience on 2nd December 2018.

    We do our best to make it easy for our customers to buy and use our tickets. It's disappointing to hear that things didn't quite go to plan this time.

    We sell m-tickets trusting that customers understand the ins and outs of the ticket type they have chosen.

    This means being prepared by making sure that your mobile device is charged and working and also making sure that you’re able to display the ticket on your mobile device for inspection when you travel. M-tickets must be activated from within the mobile application before boarding the train in order to validate the m-ticket. Your mobile device must be capable of running the mobile application and must be able to clearly present the m-ticket in a legible manner.

    Like all train companies, we've got to stick to the National Rail Conditions of Travel. This sets out everything you need to know when travelling by train. It also outlines that it's the customer's responsibility to travel with a valid ticket. If you're not able to show your m-ticket on your phone for any reason, you’ll need to buy a new ticket.

    In view of your particular experience, we will be happy to reimburse you for the additional ticket that you purchased onboard.

    Could you please send your original train tickets to the address below, quoting your reference number? Once I’ve got your tickets then we can complete the processing of your claim."

    Thanks for everyone's help on this thread, have a good New Year!
     
  18. robbeech

    robbeech Established Member

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    Good news. Though why we find it necessary to show such surprise when the correct procedure is followed shows how many problems there are with ‘the railway’ when it comes to things like this. Once you’ve got your refund I’d be very tempted to write back thanking them for taking the time to deal with this matter and ask them if they plan to take any steps to ensure that this doesn’t happen again.
     
  19. 6Gman

    6Gman Established Member

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    Electronic tickets are a mystery to me, but that response from Virgin appears to be at least 75% irrelevant nonsense. You didn't buy from them; it was nothing to do with your phone having no charge; nothing to do with failing to display the ticket; nothing to do with your validating the ticket.

    Typical Virgin template response.
     
  20. ForTheLoveOf

    ForTheLoveOf Established Member

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    I don't think giving an irrelevant template-based response is unique to Virgin. Sadly there are a number of people out there for whom the template won't be irrelevant to their query, so it is likely to stay.
     
  21. island

    island Established Member

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    Whilst the response is mostly waffle, they’re refunding the new ticket as they should, so that’s good.
     

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