Do I Have A Seat Reservation Stalker?

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by westv, 7 Feb 2020.

  1. westv

    westv Established Member

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    When travelling back on a Friday if I travel Azuma standard class I like to choose coach A as it's the nearest to the exit at the other end. When I book I am always the first reservation.

    For the last four Fridays I have got on the train and found there is just one other reserved seat - right next to mine! As I can never be bothered to find out whether this person is a "I must sit in my reserved seat and nowhere else" sort of person I always decide to sit somewhere else.

    Begs the question though - would the booking system automatically put someone right next to me in a otherwise empty coach - lots of reservations on the rest of the train....

    ...... or do I have a stalker?!! :D:D
     
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  3. stuart

    stuart Member

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    I would suspect the reservation system is programmed to use up single unoccupied seats for single travellers - it wouldn't want to issue two single seat reservations each to one of a pair of seats and then have to split up two people travelling together.
     
  4. route101

    route101 Established Member

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    Happened on Virgin trains from Glasgow , empty coach and theres someone next to me . If im early and i notice ill move . You get the odd person that wont move though.
     
  5. AndrewE

    AndrewE Established Member

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    Not unreasonable, given that lots of discounted tickets are valid "only if travelling in the allocated seat" or words to that effect. I wouldn't want to risk being charged the walk-up fare for the journey simply for being in the wrong seat, as it seems that they don't bother excessing people nowadays.
     
  6. Ianno87

    Ianno87 Established Member

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    Has that rule *ever* been enforced?
     
  7. route101

    route101 Established Member

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    Never had a guard say anything when ive moved seat . Common sense prevails and you both get space.
     
  8. AndrewE

    AndrewE Established Member

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    Given that I am sure that such tickets say "Only valid in the reserved seat," or some such, and https://www.railfuture.org.uk/When+things+go+wrong says
    Even if it hasn't, I wouldn't want to be the first victim! Would you chance it?
     
  9. Saperstein

    Saperstein Member

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    I would. I’d simply offer to move if challenged.

    Saperstein.
     
  10. Ianno87

    Ianno87 Established Member

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    All the time. Never had a TM even remotely care.

    I've had instances where it's me (adult male) and a lady travelling alone next to me, and loads of seats elsewhere. Seems odd *not* to move elsewhere...
     
  11. najaB

    najaB Veteran Member

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    If she's already sitting when you board, then yes. If you're sitting and boards and sits next to you then hey, it might be a good day. :D
     
  12. 47271

    47271 Established Member

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    Nine times out of ten I sit somewhere other than where the system has booked my seat, and that probably accounts for a few thousand journeys over the past ten years. Never once has anyone queried that my seat number isn't the one on the reservation.
     
  13. Taunton

    Taunton Established Member

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    Some reservation systems have been poor, and just fill up the coach in numerical order from one end to the other as the bookings come in, so if only two book it places them next to each other. Not only Britain, SNCF used to be known for this.
     
  14. trainophile

    trainophile Established Member

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    If I am given a seat in the bright sunshine and/or travelling backwards I will move to a different one if available. Today I moved because there was a person across the aisle who was absolutely full of a rather noisy cold, and I didn't want to risk any flying germs!

    Yesterday I moved when a couple of women started changing a baby's very smelly nappy on the table in front of me!
     
  15. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    What seat do you choose? If it's the back row, it's quite likely someone will plonk themselves there as it is a VERY desirable seat. If Coach A Seat 45 is available I will choose it even if there's someone in 46, and I will insist on sitting there as even with someone in the window it is by far the best Standard seat on the train.

    The best way to avoid someone next to you is to choose an undesirable seat (use Trainsplit for a seat selector) - most chance is backwards facing airline seat without window view.
     
  16. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Yes, lots of times, it's unenforced unless things are very busy. And if you have a walk up ticket just chuck the reservation in the bin and nobody has any way to know it ever existed.
     
  17. GB71

    GB71 Member

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    I heard it for the first time ever last Thursday on the 1627 London KX to Bradford Int Grand Central service where the Train Manager announced that he was enforcing the rule that passengers must sit in their reserved seat - and it was pretty busy. There then followed no ticket inspection at all!
     
  18. westv

    westv Established Member

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    I normally go for A38 -which is rear facing. Will cheçk 45 next tim to see what makes it so special!
     
  19. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    As long as you're not on my train :D

    It has the following attractive features:-
    - Subdued lighting (it's past the end of the tubes)
    - Large luggage space directly opposite behind the bike rows
    - Extra legroom (46 is a priority aisle seat but as it's miles from the door it isn't used for that purpose - on Pendolinos only the aisle seats are priority seats)
    - A fully aligned window
    - Nobody other than traincrew walking past

    Definitely the best on the train. All it lacks is a power socket.
     
  20. Starmill

    Starmill Events Co-ordinator

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    What on earth does Railfuture have to do with it? Or a Penalty Fare, for that matter? You can't be charged a Penalty Fare because you didn't sit in the reserved seat.

    It's very common for people to sit in a different seat to the one that was reserved because:
    - Someone else was sat there
    - No reservation labels or displays indicated that the seat was reserved, or labels or displays for a different service were shown incorrectly
    - The seat number or carriage did not exist on the train e.g. because it is using a different type of rolling stock than planned
    - The seat is in a different section of the train to where the customer is travelling, but there is no corridor connection
    - The seat isn't suitable for the journey type being made e.g. it's not on the platform at the destination, or it's not actually a wheelchair companion seat, or it is accompanied by a bicycle reservation but isn't near the cycle spaces - sometimes seats are even reserved in the wrong class of travel

    Given the almost endless list of reasons why people sit elsewhere to where they booked, it's no surprise that the restriction is almost never enforced. The first two reasons are very common, and the third is fairly common on some routes.
     
  21. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    To add to it, the person has a walk-up ticket and has thrown the reservation in the bin, meaning nobody knows it even existed.
     
  22. route101

    route101 Established Member

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    Even had a few train managers come on the blower , saying if you want more space you can move to carriage etc .
     
  23. route101

    route101 Established Member

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    Had that on a Virgin Pendo , then he didnt say anything when i was in Coach U as well as others.
     
  24. route101

    route101 Established Member

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    Yeah near the door is near the luggage rack and many people will sit there as they want go down the train. A desirable seat to me is a forward facing airline seat with a full window , not a half , with no one next to me or no one behind or sight ha .
     
  25. Tetchytyke

    Tetchytyke Established Member

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    I've never seen it enforced per se (how could they enforce it?) but I have seen TMs robustly emphasise the condition when the train is rammed (i.e. any weekend GC train, or the 1819 LNER off Kings Cross on a Bank Holiday Friday).
     
  26. AndrewE

    AndrewE Established Member

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    "Your ticket says it is only valid with that reservaton. Either you go and sit in your reserved seat or you pay me the walk-up fare for this journey..." i.e the same way they do for people with an advance ticket on the wrong train.
     
  27. route101

    route101 Established Member

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    Has that happened to you ?
     
  28. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    If you have a walk-up with reservation that doesn't work though, but then as noted you could just bin the reservation and nobody would know any different.
     
  29. AndrewE

    AndrewE Established Member

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    If it's a walk-up ticket then it isn't valid only with the reservation, is it?
    No.because I don't have that type of ticket. I am very careful to obey the rules that do apply to my tickets though.
     
  30. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Correct.
     
  31. route101

    route101 Established Member

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    I see , a stickler.
     

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