Amending advance tickets

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Hello
I recently had to amend an advance ticket which I booked for the wrong day. Using east cost it was actually very straightforward, if expensive. I now have the original ticket plus an excess.

Now I have to amend the ticket AGAIN for reasons outside of my control. This raises the following questions:

(1) Is there any limit to the number of times you can amend a reservation with an advance ticket?

(2) When amending for a second time, is the excess based on the difference between the original ticket and the new ticket, or do you also get credited for the excess already paid?

(3) Does the excess allow you to use the new reservation or require you to use the new reservation? I.e. could I go back to the original date/time or would I have to pay the admin fee again? The information wasn't clear as the email says the change is not valid without the new reservation, which is not the same as saying that the ticket is not valid without the new reservation.
 
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No limit on amount of changes. £10 per change plus the difference in fares.

The excess is based on the fare you have currently paid and the price of the new ticket.

Your "original" itinerary was revoked when you changed your ticket and reservation cancelled.
 

hairyhandedfool

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(1) Is there any limit to the number of times you can amend a reservation with an advance ticket?

Not really, although there will come a point when you will be on an Off-Peak or Anytime ticket.

(2) When amending for a second time, is the excess based on the difference between the original ticket and the new ticket, or do you also get credited for the excess already paid?

Online I don't honestly know, but at a station if present the ticket and the excess you should be charge only the difference between the fare you have already paid (without the admin fees) and the new fare, plus another admin fee.

(3) Does the excess allow you to use the new reservation or require you to use the new reservation? I.e. could I go back to the original date/time or would I have to pay the admin fee again? The information wasn't clear as the email says the change is not valid without the new reservation, which is not the same as saying that the ticket is not valid without the new reservation.

You must use the new reservation (unless you have excessed to an Off-Peak or Anytime ticket), the old one will be cancelled so that someone else can get it. If you decided to go back to the old journey details it would be another change of journey plans. The reservation coupon should have the travel ticket number on it.
 

John @ home

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Is there any limit to the number of times you can amend a reservation with an advance ticket?
Not that I am aware of. I have used an East Coast Advance ticket which had been amended twice, resulting in six cards having to be handed to the ticket examiner.
When amending for a second time, is the excess based on the difference between the original ticket and the new ticket, or do you also get credited for the excess already paid?
You get credited for the excess fares already paid, but each £10 fee is lost.
Does the excess allow you to use the new reservation or require you to use the new reservation?
The passenger is required to show all tickets in the sequence. If they change to another Advance ticket, they must also travel on the train and in the seat shown on the final reservation.
could I go back to the original date/time or would I have to pay the admin fee again?
The seat reservation associated with the journey(s) which have been changed will have been cancelled in the booking system and the seat may well have been re-allocated. So returning to the original date and time will incur an additional £10 change fee (plus any difference in fares) and will probably involve a different seat being allocated. But the passenger must show the full sequence of ticket, excess fare voucher(s) and reservations in order for the Advance ticket to be valid. This is ensured by the printing of, for example, "Valid only with ticket 12345" on each reservation voucher and each excess fare voucher.

An attempt to use the original ticket and associated reservation voucher on the date, time and seat specified is likely to lead to conflict with the passenger who has later been sold a ticket for that date, time and seat. In these circumstances, ticket inspection staff would issue a Ticket Irregularity Report. The purchaser of the original ticket (and changes) could be identified from East Coast's booking records and appropriate action taken.
 
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Except that I have pretty much never sat in my reserved seat anyway, instead choosing an unreserved seat in the quiet coach at a table (until recently I couldn't get the online system to reserve me such a seat). This would be one reason for a train manager to enforce advanced tickets to sit in the reserved seat although again I have never been asked to do this. Not that I am saying I would try it, just observing.
 

Brucey

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Are people sure that the old reservation is cancelled? I always assumed that once an advance fare was sold, it was never returned to the system.
 

AlterEgo

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Are people sure that the old reservation is cancelled? I always assumed that once an advance fare was sold, it was never returned to the system.

The seat reservation is cancelled but the fare doesn't go back on sale for the same price.
 

Eagle

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Except that I have pretty much never sat in my reserved seat anyway, instead choosing an unreserved seat in the quiet coach at a table (until recently I couldn't get the online system to reserve me such a seat).

Forgive me for being blunt, but that is kind of wasting a seat (being as people without reservations are going to see your reservation on the seat you should be sitting in, and likely not sit in it, whereas they could be sitting in the unreserved seat you're needlessly occupying). On crowded services it's a tad antisocial.

As you seem to have found out, you can now request seats at a table or in the quiet coach (or on some websites, literally choose any specific seat that's available). One thing I would like to see is the option to avoid the quiet coach—most websites just offer "quiet coach"/"no preference" and on a couple of occasions I've been put in the quiet coach against my will on journeys where I'd known I had to make phonecalls.
 
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