Castleford to Sheffield: permitted via Leeds?

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by TheaC, 20 Apr 2015.

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  1. TheaC

    TheaC New Member

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    I hope someone here might be able to help me, as I've been given different information by station and train staff. I usually travel Castleford to Sheffield return, on the hourly local Northern service. My ticket is an anytime day return that says any permitted route. Occasionally I want to travel back via Leeds, for example if I've just missed the hourly Castleford service. I was told by Sheffield ticket office staff that Sheffield to Castleford via Leeds is not a permitted route. This morning I asked to buy a single Castleford - Leeds and a return Leeds - Sheffield and was told I could just use a Castleford - Sheffield return as it said any permitted route. So who is right? If it makes any difference, the Cas - Sheffield ticket opened the gates at Leeds. Just to add complication I'm fairly sure that Woodlesford - Sheffield via Leeds is permitted, presumably because it is a shorter journey.

    Thanks for any help!
     
  2. bb21

    bb21 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Woodlesford - Sheffield is permitted via Leeds as Leeds passes fares check.

    Castleford - Sheffield is not permitted via Leeds as Castleford is a member of Pontefract Group and no mapped route between Pontefract Group and Sheffield pass through Leeds.

    Via Leeds is not within 3 miles of the shortest route for either journey.
     
  3. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    It can be faster via Leeds, and could be seen as reasonable, so you may have some staff saying yes to this.

    But as bb21 says it's not permitted.
     
  4. Solent&Wessex

    Solent&Wessex Established Member

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    There are a considerable number of on train staff (especially at Northern) who seem (like many passengers) to think that "Any Permitted Route" = "Any Route you fancy is Permitted".

    Part of the problem is poor training, but the other, most relevant is the equipment used. Ticket office staff have a system which shows them which tickets are valid for which journeys easily and quickly. Get a journey itinerary up on your screen and the fares are shown with a red cross or green tick (or similar) to indicate whether they are valid.

    Avantix machines used on train have no such function, and have two separate functions - Timetable Enquiry and Fare Enquiry. The two are not linked. The timetable enquiry, by default, always shows the quickest journey from A to B, whether it is permitted or not. The Fare enquiry just shows all fares between A and B. Even some routeing restrictions such as "Not Via Leeds" are not clearly shown, and are abbreviated as "Not Via L". "Not Preston/Lpool" just shows as "Not Prest..." on the screen, and there is no way of seeing the rest of the text until the ticket is issued and printed. Unhelpfully there is a button on the Timetable screen to show you the fares for a certain journey you have just looked up, but it just shows all fares between A and B and not the ones relevant to the timetable itinerary you have on the screen. Unless you have had any training on routeing matters (highly unlikely, I know at my TOC none is given) or you have done your own research outside of work (again, unlikely ) then staff can blindly bumble around in their own fantasy land non the wiser for years.
     
  5. Starmill

    Starmill Established Member

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    The irony of your first two lines typifies the rail industry. It annoys you that people are being defaulted to the quickest journey just in case that means they get issued with a ticket that isn't valid...

    Despite what you say, I'm pretty sure most Northern staff can just about work out that tickets that say 'NOT VIA LEEDS' are not valid via Leeds, and wouldn't sell such a ticket to someone who wanted to travel via Leeds! The difference with this Castleford - Sheffield or Leeds - Sheffield thing is a matter of pence anyway which nobody is likely to even notice, let alone care.
     
  6. johntea

    johntea Member

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    I can't actually think of that many cases where you're saving much time by trying to get back to Castleford via Leeds from Sheffield rather than waiting (preferably in the pub!) for the next direct train but I may be wrong.
     
  7. brompton rail

    brompton rail Member

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    If you take a journey like Kirk Sandall (KKS) to Castleford (CFD) although National Rail will show you journeys via Doncaster and Leeds it will not quote a return fare. However the return fares (set by Northern) are only valid via Doncaster, Wakefield Westgate - walk to Kirkgate, and on by train to Castleford! I haven't tried it, but it might show the early morning connection via Goole to Castleford.
     
  8. Starmill

    Starmill Established Member

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    Castleford to South Elmsall returns no fares online on WebTIS. I know they're available from a ticket office but the booking engine can't find any routes it considers valid. Worse than useless routing data I mean really... I am sure raileasy.trainsplit.com will shortly be able to solve this problem?

    In fact, kwvr45 this particular case shows why the Avantix approach is necessary. If someone gets on at Kirk Sandall and wants a ticket to Castleford, the guard wouldn't be able to sell one if it were set up any other way!
     
    Last edited: 23 Apr 2015
  9. TheaC

    TheaC New Member

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    Thanks everyone. Johntea - you're right, it's not much quicker but sometimes works better with my bus at the other end. (If I miss the hourly train and then my connection to the hourly bus that's a long commute.) And sometimes I just want to go to Leeds!
     
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