Bizarre Advance Fare Routing

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by muug1982, 20 Nov 2011.

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  1. muug1982

    muug1982 Member

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    Travelling from St Albans to Coleshill Parkway "last train" on 7th Dec. No cheap advances available via Leicester, so looked at St Albans Abbey. An £11 advance available, which I've taken...however this bizarrely routes me as follows:

    20:53 St Albans Abbey - Watford Junction 21:10
    21:16 Watford Junction - London Euston 21:38
    22:00 London Euston - Nuneaton 23:03
    23:10 Nuneaton - Coleshill Parkway 23:25

    Obviously there's loads to stations that are doubled back through, although presumably this is OK on an advance?

    What makes it bizarre is that it is possible to avoid going into London by taking the 21:58 to Birmingham and changing at Rugby or Milton Keynes ending up on the same 22:00 ex Euston. Presumably should the 20:53 be just 2 minutes late into Watford I'll be able to travel via the alternative as I'll miss the connection, allowing for the connection time.

    I've never used the St Albans abbey line, and will be travelling with luggage, what will the access be like at St Albans and the change at Watford (I'm familiar with Nuneaton, 7 minutes should be fine, hopefully no residual delay)

    Finally, as the ticket is routed VWC and connections - the first two services are London Midland, could I travel via St Pancras from St Albans and walk up to Euston, or do I have to stick with the specified route for the "connections" I know it's ok to travel on trains that are slightly earlier.
     
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  3. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    Advance fares are valid on the booked train(s) - in this case the 2200 Euston to Nuneaton - plus appropriate connecting trains, and do not follow the normal rules of permitted routes.
    What is the origin printed on the ticket?

    If it really has issued a ticket from "St Albans" and has given you an itinerary of walking to St Albans Abbey, then I'd say that is fine. However if it has actually issued a ticket from St Albans Abbey, then I would say not.
     
  4. muug1982

    muug1982 Member

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    Ticket Origin is St Albans Abbey
     
  5. causton

    causton Established Member

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    In that case, sorry but no, it will have to be the Abbey Line. It's not that bad :lol:

    Getting on and off the train should be fine, they have 'humps' for level access along parts of the train as you might have seen on the Victoria line etc, with a 3-4 minute walk from the Abbey branch platform to the southbound slow line platform (which your Watford-Euston train will probably be on)... luggage should be fine, shouldn't have to go up or down unless your Watford-Euston train is on the fast line, in which case there are lifts :)
     
  6. calc7

    calc7 Established Member

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    You can get the £11 fare by specifying avoid EUS on the East Coast website, and gives you the following itinerary:

    St Albans Abbey 20:53LM

    Watford Junction21:10
    Train terminates at Watford Junction
    StationArrDepFacilities
    Watford Junction 21:41LM

    Milton Keynes Central22:20
    Train terminates at Milton Keynes Central
    StationArrDepFacilities
    Milton Keynes Central 22:31VT

    Nuneaton23:03
    Train continues to Manchester Piccadilly
    StationArrDepFacilities
    Nuneaton 23:10XC

    Coleshill Parkwy23:25
     
  7. Mr Spock

    Mr Spock Member

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    As far as I remember all passengers from the Abbey line need to use stairs to get to the subway to access other platforms (which have stairs and lifts) at Watford Junction.
     
  8. muug1982

    muug1982 Member

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    Thanks for all responses, I'd already purchased the ticket via euston as didn't want to miss the allocation. Stairs aren't a huge problem. I'll just have too much luggage to prevent me running for a train.
     
  9. causton

    causton Established Member

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    Don't know if this has changed recently (as National Rail Enquiries says Stations Made Easy is showing the layout you describe, but the route has been changed) - but there is now a pathway with level access from platform 11 to the next platform along (whichever the slow WCML up line platform is)
     
  10. Eagle

    Eagle Established Member

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    It's platform 10, funnily enough :P
     
  11. causton

    causton Established Member

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    Haha shh, the NRE map is just confusing my memories of it... with the 'disused platform' next to platform 10!
     
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