Are Glasgow to Euston berth supplements dynamically priced?

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by Shinkansenfan, 29 Aug 2015.

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  1. Shinkansenfan

    Shinkansenfan Member

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    Searched the forum; couldn't find an answer...

    I'm thinking of traveling Glasgow to Euston this September using a 1cl Britrail Pass. When checking the Sleepr.scot site a few days ago, I thought I saw the 1cl berth supplement as 50 Pounds.

    Checking today for that same route/date, the supplement is 75 Pounds.

    Are the berth supplements dynamically priced?

    Checking that same website, it appears that sleeper supplements for travel before 5 or 6 September are priced at 50 Pounds; but rise to 75 Pounds for the various random dates that I checked after the 6th.

    Also do they fill up the 1cl coaches from Coach J, K and L (in that order) or from L, K and J?

    Any insights to these two questions?

    Thanks in advance.
     
    Last edited: 31 Aug 2015
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  3. najaB

    najaB Veteran Member

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    They never used to be, huge change if they are now.
     
  4. lejog

    lejog Established Member

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    It seems that Serco have put up the prices of supplements dramatically, especially for those with a standard ticket who want a solo berth!

    From Man in Seat 61
    "If you have a standard class ticket, the sleeper supplement is £44.20 for a bed in a shared 2-bed compartment, or you can pay £62.70 and have sole occupancy of a 2-berth sleeper (ask for the 'Sleeper Solo' supplement). The sleeper supplement is £21.55 for children under 16. If you have a first class ticket or BritRail pass, you pay £50 for a bed in a single-bed compartment"

    From sleeper.scot
    "The following Berth Supplements are available:
    • Standard Class Twin Berth Sleeper £75.00 adult / £37.50 child
    • First Class Berth Sleeper £75.00 adult (no child supplement available – children travel for the same price as adults)
    A first class supplement ticket allows booking of an exclusive use cabin. If you hold a Standard ticket and want exclusive use of the cabin you first need to upgrade your Standard ticket to First Class"
     
  5. najaB

    najaB Veteran Member

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    That's gone up recently. I booked a shared berth supplement two weeks ago and it cost £52.20.
     
  6. theblackwatch

    theblackwatch Emeritus Moderator

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    Also, do AP tickets exist on these trains now? The cheapest tickets I could find on them (seated) when I checked a few days ago were £50 single. A far cry from the days of Bargain Berths at £19-49!
     
  7. Hadders

    Hadders Fares Advisor

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    I paid a berth supplement of £62.70 for solo occupancy from Fort William to Euston back in June.

    I assume the new prices are effective from NFM22.

    I fear this is a sign of things to come with the useless Serco now running the show.
     
  8. Shinkansenfan

    Shinkansenfan Member

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    I sent them an email to inquire:


    Good Afternoon Mr < Easy to spell surname misspelled> :roll:

    As of the 6th September the supplement price will be £75.00.

    This will be the only payment you will make holding a britrail pass.

    Kind Regards

    <Name redacted>
    Guest Ambassador

    __

    Given the new 75 Pound pricing, I'm not sure it is good value, especially when combined with the need to buy a first class ticket/railpass--and given the reports in this forum of train reliability.

    My last few Euston to Glasgow/Edinburgh sleeper rides in the past few years (pre Serco) have had issues ranging from freezing cold cabins with no heat to locomotive failure where my Edinburgh section was annulled at Glasgow and I arrived hours late in Edinburgh.

    I've sent an email to Mark at Seat61.com mentioning the new sleeper supplement price.

    __

    I can't wait to see what pricing the new sleeper trains in 2018 will command. Hopefully this will not become a tourist only train with outrageous pricing a la the "Canadian" between Toronto and Vancouver.
     
    Last edited: 31 Aug 2015
  9. CyrusWuff

    CyrusWuff Established Member

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    No mention of the hefty increase to Berth Supplements in KnowledgeBase yet, but there has been a change to the refund policy.

    For the Caledonian Sleepers, it's now possible to get a full refund (less admin fee) up to the close of reservations on the day of travel, both for berth-inclusive tickets and supplements.
     
  10. Hadders

    Hadders Fares Advisor

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    Interesting to see that the Night Riviera berth supplements are £60 solo and £35 sharing.

    I suspect we're going to see massive increases when the new trains start running. So far the 'benefits' of this new franchise are:

    - massive increase in berth fees
    - removal of Advance tickets to/from Fort William and Edinburgh/Glasgow
    - refusal to recognise the Local Scottish Easements
    - appalling reliability
     
  11. yorkie

    yorkie Forum Staff Staff Member Administrator

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    Indeed. The Scottish Ministers who made the decision have a lot to answer for.

    http://www.transportscotland.gov.uk/rail/caledonian-sleeper-franchise

    But it should read:
    :roll:<(
     
  12. Blindtraveler

    Blindtraveler Established Member

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    My pme and thankfully only trip so far on the service post-Serco was in 'scum class' on a £26 railcard Discounted AP Glasgow>London.

    Whilst previous operators have always not hidden the fact that your a bit of a cheapskate travelling this way I found that you really did feel like the passenger they didn't really want this time. If a sensible standard berth upgrade such as FGW's £35 had been offered then I may have taken it, particularly as I was travelling with someone else who would have been equally willing to occupy the other bed.

    However as this was very much a done on the cheap bashing trip, with the Caly merely acting as a necessary evil that delivered us to London early on a Monday Morning then even £50 was too much and in fact only £8 less than I paid to an independent budget hotel near Birmingham the following night for an ensuite room with free WiFi, 2 course dinner, 3 drinks and an English Breakfast!

    £62 would get you a non advance rate room in a Premier Inn and £75 would almost get you that same room plus the meal deal (3 course dinner plus boozy drink and a full breaky) at the same premier inn. Serco a few years ago were given the Northlink Ferries contract to Orkney and Shetland and as an excercise in crap customer relations, even crappier staff ones and prioritising tourists above all else it's been a huge success. It does not however hide the fact that for onboard services local people are paying more and getting less and reliability (for which they conveniently blame the weather) has suffered too!

    Everything anyone has ever said on here about the promises made by the Scottish Government and Serco being far from the reality is true and accurate and whilst I admit the old way of doing things wasn't great I can still recall the time I got a berth supplement from London to Aberdeen on Easter Thursday for £49 with 29hrs notice!

    As I've said elsewhere I think Serco are merely the Rock Bottom SmartPrice Contractor appointed to make the whole thing look unviable so that the order for new stock can be ditched and the service scrapped when the trains either fall apart or become illegal.

    Anyone wishing to dispute this should take a look at RyanAirs website where £15 gets you an Edinburgh or Glasgow to London flight and another £15 gets you home again. Easybus singles Stansted>London (only 20 mins slower than AGA) AND YOUR CHOSEN Scottish transfer and you've done London and back for £50. OK this isn't overnight and certainly isn't what you'd call relaxing but if the Sleeper wants to attract the business traveller who doesn't work for a huge rich company or the tourist on even a moderate budget then it needs to rethink, and fast!

    NB If you're a railcard holder you can get VTWC Advances Scotland>London and return on the slower Via Birmingham route for £72, that's £3 less than this rip-off of an upgrade and it includes 2 meals, 1x Scotland and the other X Birmingham. This price is also available on quieter services changing at Crewe.
     
  13. Flying Snail

    Flying Snail Member

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    Unbelievable.

    I was just looking to book a few sleepers for later in they year and was stunned by the price.

    How the hell do they justify a 50% rise? And at a time when their service is far from reliable.
     
  14. najaB

    najaB Veteran Member

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    Agreed. It'll pretty much price me off the Sleeper. I've always used it as it's cheaper than getting a day train down and a hotel for the night, this takes away the price advantage.
     
  15. Blindtraveler

    Blindtraveler Established Member

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    Likewise. Iv just booked 3 nights hotel in Birmingham as a way of doing work in both the Midlands and London later in the year for the same price as 1 supplement. Couple of LM or Chilton cheepo advances and I get to spend time in 2 of my fave UK Citys, London and Birmingham for the cost of 1 and a half sleaper journeys.
     
  16. DEE-DE

    DEE-DE Member

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    Same thing here. I usually use it to travel down to London overnight, then spend the morning/noon in London and then head on to Germany. I've already switched to using East Coast on the return even though it is a 15 hour journey (Sleeper southbound as I am not sure what DB would say about being late into London on a London Int CIV ticket). Cheap hotel with a shared bathroom but including breakfast usually costs me £33, so even with a Railcard it is now close to even (Aberdeen portion, VTEC usually £20.xx). This would also have the advantage of being able to safely take an earlier Eurostar, getting into Germany at a more sociable time. I do this journey three times a year and I very much prefer the train to flying. Especially with Lufthansa having put up their prices for those flying with luggage the train is still going to be cheaper. I was actually looking forward to be justifying the Sleeper both ways again, now I am not so sure (student, so plenty of time during my holidays but need to justify those expenses to my parents).
     
  17. Blindtraveler

    Blindtraveler Established Member

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    DEE-DE What Hotel do you use?
     
    Last edited: 9 Sep 2015
  18. DEE-DE

    DEE-DE Member

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    I use the county hotel booked through superbreak. It seems they've put prices up though and they now have varying prices depending on when you're staying. Oddly enough they are also showing prices higher than the £53 rate you get through the hotel itself. Cheapest I've found on superbreak was £36 now. Last time I stayed in February coming down for a weekend on the sleeper, it was Valentine's weekend actually. The other time I used it was in August 2013 when moving to uni which was Friday to Saturday. That was actually how I found the place, as EastCoast had paired with superbreak.
    The hotel is a bit meh, but I find it alright to stay. Their left luggage is a lot cheaper than at the stations and they've got a breakfast buffet. I've never actually gotten the TV to work but that might just be because I am on the cheap rate.
    Other option would be the youth hostel, though I've never made use of that as essentially for just a few quid more than the bed+breakfast rate at the hostel you get your own room at the hotel.
     
    Last edited: 9 Sep 2015
  19. Hadders

    Hadders Fares Advisor

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    I took the seated sleeper from Fort William to Edinburgh last night.

    The FTW portion (at least) is still worked by Scotrail staff. The guard from the 1815 ex-Mallaig works the sleeper as far as Rannoch. Another Scotrail guard then took us through to Edinburgh.

    Seat reservations were checked (even though there were only five of us on the seats). I had split my tickets but apparently if you need to purchase on board they will only sell a through ticket now (not sure if they can do this from a station with no ticket issuing facilities although to be fair it is a reservations compulsory service).

    Berth supplements for exclusive use of a standard class berth are no longer available. The website says if you have a standard class ticket and wish to have exclusive use of a berth you need to upgrade to a first class ticket.

    So, be prepared to share if you're doing a standard class ALR, or using an Off Peak Return etc.

    This new company really hasn't got a clue.
     
  20. Blindtraveler

    Blindtraveler Established Member

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    I dont think they can not allow a split ticket sale like that?????? Fare enough on the core sections but given theres not many booking offices up that way, I think only 1 on route??? This seams a tad strange!
     
  21. reb0118

    reb0118 Established Member Fares Advisor

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    For passengers using the service as a "day" train between Fort William & Edinburgh you can still split away to your heart's content.

    For passengers travelling beyond Edinburgh there is no real benefit to splitting as there is a flat fare in use to the notional destination of SCS Station NLC I458 that covers all sleeper served destinations in Englandshire, viz. Preston, Crewe, Watford Jn., & London Euston.
     
  22. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    How silly. If anything, fGW's approach (which tallies more with hotels - when did you ever share a hotel room with a stranger) is more sensible.

    To me it should be a Standard Class service with priced supplements to different categories of accommodation, more like the German approach to such things.
     
  23. najaB

    najaB Veteran Member

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    That, sir, is a whole different story. But what happens in Rio, stays in Rio! :D
     
  24. reb0118

    reb0118 Established Member Fares Advisor

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    Or Rochdale! :p
     
  25. Hadders

    Hadders Fares Advisor

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    It appears you can get exclusive use of a standard berth but only by purchasing an Advance ticket that offers it. Berth supplements when using flexible tickets no longer offer an exclusive use of a standard berth.

    Completely useless for many leisure travellers using an ALR, BritRail pass or anyone wishing to use the flexibility of an Off Peak Return with a berth supplement. Also, what about people who want to use the sleeper as part of a longer journey - for example Brighton to Mallaig, or Dover to Thurso. It seems you can no longer do this using a through ticket and a berth supplement unless you're prepared to share.

    It seems to me that Serco only really want to sell Advance tickets and have no regard for their wider responsibilities as part of the National Rail network.
     
  26. Blindtraveler

    Blindtraveler Established Member

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    I personally feel that we, as a collective boddy on this forum need to be contacting Serco and the Scottish govd expressing our concerns, not just as a bunch of trainspotters but as people who love, live and breath the railway and hate to see so many muckups and messes of this kind and others being made?
     
  27. CyrusWuff

    CyrusWuff Established Member

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    I stand for correction, but I believe Great Western can "get away with" not having people sharing by default as loadings on the Night Riviera tend to be lower than those on the Caledonian Sleepers...That and they don't run what amounts to four trains a night in ten portions!
     
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