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Buying Railcard Discounted Tickets Without Railcard

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34D

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True, but I'm fairly sure the only reason that TVMs and websites don't ask for the railcard is because there is no reliable way for them to do so.

It could be done (even if un-validated) quite simply.

I'd imagine on train, future tickets without railcard would be sold more willingly (due to guard commission).
 
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mallard

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It could be done (even if un-validated) quite simply.

How?

The best I can think of, would be to use the user's webcam to do some sort of image recognition... If they printed a QR (or similar) code on the railcard that might even be somewhat reliable, but even then, not everyone has a webcam.

TVMs could have magnetic stripe readers fitted I suppose... I assume that the magnetic stripe on a Railcard actually stores something useful? I've never seen it scanned for any purpose...
 

island

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The magstripe on station-issued Railcards holds information like the expiry date and place of issue.

Is there a magstripe on online-issued Railcards?
 

causton

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The magstripe on station-issued Railcards holds information like the expiry date and place of issue.

Is there a magstripe on online-issued Railcards?

I would assume not, as they are plastic and are just a little bit too thick to fit in the magstripe reader (like an Oyster card, which reportedly snaps if you try to put it in a ticket barrier like a paper ticket!)
 

maniacmartin

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I can confirm that my online-issued railcard has no mag stip on the back.
The back contains a place for you to sign and a barcode with a serial number underneath.

I can think of a few ways in which railcards could be checked for tickets bought online.

1) Put a barcode or mag stripe on every future railcard, and upgrade TVMs to be able to read these. This would be quite expensive imo.

2) Allow customers to link their debit/credit cards to their railcards. Whilst this wouldn't prevent someone with a railcard from buying a ticket for a non-railcard holder, it would make it that little bit harder. How it could work, is customer makes a one-off visit to any manned station and hands over their railcard and debit/credit card. These are then linked in a central database (that only stores a hash of the payment card number, not the full number in case of a security breach). When the customer buys a ticket online using the same payment card, then the website knows they are a railcard holder. This association could even be done automatically when initially buying the railcards.

The main problems with above are people who have multiple cards which would all need registering, and also the hassle of having to register a railcard you already have from before the rule was introduced. Perhaps allowing people to collect discounted ToD tickets from the booking office if their payment card isnt registered could get around this (and their card could be associated at the same time!):D
 

furryfeet

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That could just be ignorance rather than malice as no FCC stations ever sold Two Together Railcards.
Not good enough !

Why have ATOC not informed the TOC's outside of the West Midlands that the Two Together Railcard actually exists ?

What action can the individual take against the TOC if they find that the booking clerk / guard refuses to accept a perfectly valid railcard ?
 

island

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ATOC has informed all TOCs, via a notice on the Manual, about the Two Together Railcard. Not every single staff member at every single TOC will know about it.

If a booking clerk refuses to accept a Two Together Railcard, the passengers, if they have enough time, can ask the clerk to consult The Manual while they wait. If not, or if dealing with a guard, they should pay whatever is being asked (or accept whatever unpaid fare notice or penalty fare notice offered) and sort it out later with the TOC, perhaps requesting compensation for the inconvenience in the form of Rail Travel Vouchers.
 

sheff1

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I attempted to book advance tickets at a single-manned FCC ticket office with a Two Together Railcard and the clerk denied such a railcard existed.

I assume you showed the Railcard. If so, how could they possibly deny that it existed ...
 
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