Changes to Annual Gold Card benefits from 2nd January 2015

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by CyrusWuff, 8 Oct 2014.

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  1. CyrusWuff

    CyrusWuff Established Member

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    This appears in the form of a letter which I'm guessing will be sent to existing Gold Card holders.

    Details of the "extended" area have not yet been disclosed.
     
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  3. Haywain

    Haywain Established Member

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    Two of those represent a reduction in benefits for Gold Card holders - the £20 railcard discount will replace the £1 partner's card, and the 60% child discount will be in place of the current flat fare. The extended area could be quite substantial (I'm not sure it has been completely agreed yet) but there could also be more limitations on usage of the Gold Card discount in some places.
     
  4. CyrusWuff

    CyrusWuff Established Member

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    I'm assuming the extension of discounts to First Class tickets replaces the £5 Gold Card First Supplements as well.
     
  5. Tetchytyke

    Tetchytyke Established Member

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    So the Network Railcard for a partner will be going from £1 to £10, the £5 first class supplement will be replaced with the requirement to buy a whole new first class ticket, and the child flat fare will be getting abolished.

    Gee, ATOC, with these "improved benefits" you're really spoiling us :roll:
     
  6. hairyhandedfool

    hairyhandedfool Established Member

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    Depends on the offer, if it's £20 off a Network Railcard then it is a reduction of benefits, but then why would a Goldcard holder need a Network Railcard? If, as I read it, it's £20 off any Railcard, I'd say that is an improvement in some respects.

    I guess we'll have to wait for confirmation on that one.
     
  7. Haywain

    Haywain Established Member

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    Arctic Troll sums it up rather well. A discounted national railcard may be a better deal for some, but for a lot it is definitely not.
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    That appears to be correct.
     
  8. DarloRich

    DarloRich Veteran Member

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    Agreed - it is the child fare that is the most annoying - however IF the area increases vastly the trade off may be acceptable
     
  9. Be3G

    Be3G Established Member

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    Nooooo, no more (admittedly difficult to source) 1st supplements. :cry:

    Oh well, we won't be paying for full first class tickets even with a discount, so ATOC will have to say goodbye to some extra helpings of £5 revenue from us, then.
     
  10. Tetchytyke

    Tetchytyke Established Member

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    Precisely.

    As it stands, on a weekend I can pay an extra £5 to travel first class on the journey my season ticket covers.

    With this "improved benefit" I can pay an extra £27.87 to travel first class on the journey my season ticket covers.

    I think I'll give it a miss, but thanks all the same.
     
  11. iphone76

    iphone76 Member

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    At least they are not introducing a minimum fare when using the GC to obtain a discounted fare.
     
  12. IanD

    IanD Established Member

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    Looks like I'll be renewing my network railcard early this time around. I'll lose 6 weeks but save £9 (assuming no price uincrease on railcards on 02/01).
     
  13. RJ

    RJ Established Member

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    The First Class supplements have evening peak restrictions on them, so the proposals will reduce the cost of upgrading a Standard season to First Class in the evenings.
     
    Last edited: 8 Oct 2014
  14. Haywain

    Haywain Established Member

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    Unless I'm missing something, the supplement cannot currently be used with a season ticket on a weekday, therefore there will be no change to the cost of upgrading.
     
  15. Greeby

    Greeby Member

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    The only detail about Gold Card area I've picked up so far has been from a CrossCountry Retail Brief a month back, which stated that while validity on Banbury - Bournemouth will be retained, the discount will not be valid on CrossCountry from Stansted - Ely
     
  16. GodAtum

    GodAtum On Moderation

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    Interesting, if I only have a Zone 2-6, I can get a 1/3 off a Zone 1 ticket in 1st.
     
  17. RJ

    RJ Established Member

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    I presume there will be a change to the cost of upgrading, now allowing a third off the price of an upgrade. At the moment, the procedure is to charge the difference between SDS and FDS as advertised on NRE.

    For example;

    London to Reading SDS - £22.20
    London to Reading FDS - £42.50

    Difference: £20.30

    With a third off;
    London to Reading SDS - £14.65
    London to Reading FDS - £28.05

    Difference: £13.40

    Bearing in mind discounted ticket types can also be used for excesses of this type, I can't find anything to suggest that railcard discounts mustn't be applied to them.

    Not that I've ever done one mind.

    Is the current railcard a Parnter's Card? Might be a bit tricky to do so if so!
     
    Last edited: 8 Oct 2014
  18. CyrusWuff

    CyrusWuff Established Member

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    I would suggest that if you were looking to upgrade for a journey covered by your season, the FULL difference between the Singles would apply, as the ticket you're upgrading is undiscounted. YMMV, however.
     
  19. westv

    westv Established Member

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    Oh for the days when you got 1/3 off UK wide and 50% off in the NSE area.
     
  20. IanD

    IanD Established Member

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    Yes, but my partner's gold card is up for renewal this week so I can renew my railcard at the end of December. Unless the new, improved benefits only apply to gold cards issued after 1st of January - I'm assuming that current gold cards will swap to the new conditions rather than keeping the current ones until expiry.
     
  21. greatkingrat

    greatkingrat Established Member

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    I guess Peterborough and Ipswich would be logical places to include in the Gold Card area.
     
  22. Be3G

    Be3G Established Member

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    A gold 1st supplement can be used on the season ticket's route during the off-peak on a weekday if a discounted standard ticket is also purchased for that journey. Purchasing that combination can be cheaper than simply paying for a first class upgrade. This is what RJ was getting at: off-peak, current standard gold card season holders can use the method I've described, whereas in the evening they need to pay the full upgrade price.
     
  23. island

    island Established Member

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    This will be interesting if the discount can be applied to, say, a Two Together Railcard.
     
  24. jon0844

    jon0844 Veteran Member

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    How ironic. I moan about FCC not knowing how to do them, but recently some staff were sent to Hitchin to learn about ticketing and were shown how to do the supplements!

    And FGW and other web-based ticketing systems now offer them for sale.

    But just as soon as people might be able to actually buy them, they go.

    Wow, fantastic news!

    £5 upgrades (with certain restrictions) was a nice bit of extra revenue for the railway - but, no, we can't have that. So instead we can get 1/3 off a first class ticket, which suddenly means I won't decide to upgrade almost on impulse.

    The change to using it after 0930 is good, and clearly some of these new benefits will be shouted VERY loudly in all the documentation. I could almost write the letter/mailshot right now.

    Something along the lines of 'Great news - your Gold Card is getting better' and then hiding the 'oh, but we're also doing this..' until later on in the text.

    Inverness would be nice.
     
  25. Haywain

    Haywain Established Member

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    Changes to which operators accept tickets with a Gold Card discount will impact the areas covered, but I think it is safe to say that Inverness is out of the question.
     
  26. Greeby

    Greeby Member

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    The ATOC brief was emailed to us this morning. The expanded area is as follows:

    The lines of Anglia north of Manningtree and east of Cambridge and Ely.
    West Coast Main Line up to Stafford.
    Lines of the West Midlands bounded by Stafford, Shrewsbury and Worcester. But NOT the Coventry - Leamington Spa connection.

    Now for the bad news. Virgin will no longer accept Gold Card discount, although they will continue to accept the Network Railcard. CrossCountry will, as discussed previously, maintain validity on Banbury - Bournemouth. But will not extend validity into the expanded area. And on the East Coast, the boundary limit remains at Huntingdon, instead of extending to Peterborough.
     
  27. bb21

    bb21 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Does that mean Virgin will accept the Network Railcard all the way to Stafford?

    The expanded area is most surprising. Shame the inconsistency between TOCs.

    Does that also mean the Chiltern Mainline is bounded by two areas which both accept the Network Railcard / Gold Card, or do Chiltern accept them now too?
     
  28. Greeby

    Greeby Member

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    Perhaps that didn't come out right. Yes, the entire Chiltern route through to Kidderminster will be valid.

    The brief didn't mention changes to the Network Railcard except to say the current validity on Virgin would not be affected. No word on if there will be the same expansion or not.
     
  29. Be3G

    Be3G Established Member

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    Thanks for the info Greeby. The TOC (non-)acceptance all sounds a bit confusing. :(
     
  30. greatkingrat

    greatkingrat Established Member

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    I predict a surge in season ticket sales between Lichfield City and Lichfield TV.
     
  31. W-on-Sea

    W-on-Sea Established Member

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    Gosh. Although the XC thing is a bit annoying (from the POV of someone living in Oxford), that's quite something.
     
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