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Could I be left without a seat?

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Please could I ask a couple of questions. I am travelling in November on a return from Worcester to Southampton via Oxford. Four trains in total and I have seat reservations for them all. On the two Cross Country trains I have been allocated Priority Seats. I do not need this type of seat but would not like to have to stand. Should I give up my seat for a priority traveller if requested? What would you do if asked to move?

On one of the Great Wester trains I have been allocated the disabled companion seat. I think I could keep that seat if asked to move but It might inconvenience a disabled passenger?

Thank you, Stephen.



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MarlowDonkey

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On the two Cross Country trains I have been allocated Priority Seats. I do not need this type of seat but would not like to have to stand.

It may well be that you get these sets, which have more legroom, by booking early. Or is it that you have a Senior Railcard? Are the trains at a date and time, when likely to be lightly loaded?
 

gray1404

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I would like to hope that someone is allocated those seats perhaps if they have booked with a disabled persons railcard.

In answer to your question, you are not required to give up your seat. You hold a valid reservation for it and that is the end of the matter.
 

PermitToTravel

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Do CrossCountry Voyagers still have priority seats? I was under the impression that all the branding had been removed from them and they're just seats now, albeit ones with extra legroom
 

AlterEgo

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I would like to hope that someone is allocated those seats perhaps if they have booked with a disabled persons railcard.

In answer to your question, you are not required to give up your seat. You hold a valid reservation for it and that is the end of the matter.

Indeed, the only person who could move him would be the guard/TM.
 
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Thank you. Perhaps it is just because I have booked early. I do not qualify for any railcard. I assume Worcester to and from Oxford will be quiet as it is outside the peak. Oxford to and from Southampton I assume will be busy because it is Cross Country. It seems a reservation overrules priority need. I wonder if I could do it though.

Best wishes, Stephen


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bb21

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Should I give up my seat for a priority traveller if requested?

Yes, if the other person obviously needs it more than you do.

I'm sure you will agree that it is only good manners.

No one can make you move, not even the TM, if you refuse to.
 

me123

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Of course, you may find yourself in the position where the priority traveller requests that you give up your seat for them. This is very rare (I've never seen anyone make such a request), but would you honestly refuse to give up your seat in such a circumstance? All of what's been said above is absolutely true, but to be honest I'd struggle to say no to a disabled person making the request. After all, it is probably supported by the stickers in the carriage (I can't find a picture of the XC ones, but if it reiterates their policy you would look pretty heartless not to give up your seat if requested). Your reservation may well entitle you to sit in that seat, but I think any reasonable person confronted with a disabled passenger making such a request in the priority seating area would struggle not to oblige. I would certainly give up my seat in this circumstance.

It almost certainly won't happen though - as I've said I've never actually seen a person make such a request. You're very concerned with getting a seat, as are many passengers, particularly those who need a seat. Most people who really need to sit down on a longer distance service will probably have made a reservation of their own, because they also don't want to stand.

As for the companion seat - the companion is unlikely to need a seat and I wouldn't rush to offer it to them. The vast majority of companions will be pushing wheelchairs I reckon - that action in itself renders you pretty fit and well.
 

Bletchleyite

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I also find, as a regular user of priority seats (being tall), that those for whom they are intended actually don't want them, as the spacing is too wide to sit down while holding the seat in front for assistance. I'm not sure I have ever needed to give one up, whereas I have given up regular seats.
 

najaB

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In the event that you were 'dispossessed' of your seat, the TM should seek to find you another, in First if necessary.
 

me123

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You would be able to make a complaint, although the complaint should IMO be centred on the fact that you were allocated a seat that you would possibly have to vacate and did have to vacate, rather than focusing on the fact that you did have to vacate the seat (if you know what I'm getting at). It would be argued that it is reasonable for the priority seats to remain unreserved, or be the last seats on the train to be reserved.

But I'll reiterate - it is very unlikely that you will be in this situation. Sit back and enjoy the ride.
 
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Thank you for your advice. I shall just relax and enjoy my journey. It seems very unlikely I will be asked to move. Seems odd to reserve that type of seat for me though. After Oxford it is route I have never done so should be interesting.

Thanks again, Stephen.


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father_jack

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Do CrossCountry Voyagers still have priority seats? I was under the impression that all the branding had been removed from them and they're just seats now, albeit ones with extra legroom

Priority seats are only a criteria in the seat booking part of your journey. I have never encountered someone having to get out of them to accomodate another "unreserved" though more priority customer. Oddly XC often give F15A as a priority seat which isn't all that helpful when it's a sight impaired passenger for example. I usually ask for F03A which just books as a normal seat.
 

yorkie

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.... Should I give up my seat for a priority traveller if requested?
That's your choice; you may be asked to move but you cannot be forced to move.
What would you do if asked to move?
It would depend on who was asking, and what other seats were available.

Some people can be nasty & militant about seats though this is very rare in my experience.
 

PeterC

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Some people can be nasty & militant about seats though this is very rare in my experience.
Drifting a little off topic I remember on SNCF once two elderly Frenchmen arguing about who should have the priority seats. There were only six people in the carriage.
 

ainsworth74

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Do CrossCountry Voyagers still have priority seats? I was under the impression that all the branding had been removed from them and they're just seats now, albeit ones with extra legroom

Yup still there with branding. I often aim for them as my legs don't comfortably fit in the normal seats (though obviously if someone needed it I'd give it up as I can wedge myself in the normal seats it just isn't nice).
 
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Thank you. I have seen priority seats before on other operators. I never noticed the extra leg room. I too have never seen any trouble over seats. I would imagine it can happen on crowded Cross Country trains. A bit pointless when there are only six people in the carriage. I might try one of those ordered meals for my trip.

Best wishes, Stephen.


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Master29

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Do CrossCountry Voyagers still have priority seats? I was under the impression that all the branding had been removed from them and they're just seats now, albeit ones with extra legroom

Yes, they do and back to the OP`s point I often use priority seats for legroom alone and I always book in advance. I`ve never had any issues with people wanting to sit down.
 

Bletchleyite

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Not all trains that have priority seats give extra legroom in those seats.

They almost universally do, because they are required by the regulations to do so. Which is actually a little silly, because my observation is that users tend to like to lower themselves into their seat by holding the back of the seat in front, which you can't do if it's too far away. So I find typical priority seat candidates usually don't take them - indeed I can't recall ever having been "unseated" from one.
 

TUC

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It may well be that you get these sets, which have more legroom, by booking early.

Surely priority seats should be the last to be reserved for non-disabled passengers? It rather defeats their purpose to have them allocated so early for passengers who do not need them.
 
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That is what I think. Only give out priority seat reservations as a last resort unless specifically required. Though in reality there seem to be no problems.

Best wishes, Stephen.


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Bletchleyite

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That is what I think. Only give out priority seat reservations as a last resort unless specifically required.

I like to reserve them, personally, because it means I can be sure[1] of extra legroom. Indeed, I near enough never bothered reserving anything on VTWC until the seat map meant I could easily ensure one if available (and if not consider another train if possible).

[1] Mostly, though as I say I've never needed to leave one that I can recall, particularly as I sit on the window side normally and it is the aisle that will go first. Indeed, ISTR on VT some of them are only considered priority on the aisle. An able bodied companion does not get priority; they can stand in the aisle as I could if there's nowhere else to sit. If there is somewhere else to sit, most likely they will both sit elsewhere.
 
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