Do you think that a train company might ever pay for a taxi if a delay means last bus missed?

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by marshmallow, 14 Nov 2017.

  1. marshmallow

    marshmallow Member

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    I know that they're not obliged to, however if someone leaves ample time to make the connection but due to a train delay, arrives in a rural area and has misses the last bus, do you think that they might cover the cost of a taxi? If not, then a poor vulnerable person might have no choice but to walk several miles at night, which is potentially dangerous.

    Does anyone think that train companies should have to do this, in the same way that they would be responsible if you missed the last connecting train due to a delay? I do think that there needs to be better integration between different methods of transport. Otherwise it is quite unfair on people who live in rural areas without a car. I have sometimes cycled to a station myself in similar situations because of this risk, however it's not very safe to be forced to cycle on country lanes in the dark and I feel as though train companies need to take more responsibility for passengers with respect to the whole journey, not just the portions which are covered by trains.

    On a separate note, perhaps bus companies should have some sort of obligation to provide some service in each area 24/7 for the safety of the public. I would imagine that by doing so fewer people would drink-drive so it would benefit the whole of society!
     
  2. Lrd

    Lrd Established Member Jobs & Careers Assistant

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    They will get you as far as it says on your ticket, how you decide to get to and from the station is your choice, if you don't feel confident cycling then get a taxi or lift from a family member/friend.

    You may get a goodwill gesture but don't count on it.

    If you're not happy with your local buses then complain to the council/bus company.
     
  3. Llanigraham

    Llanigraham Established Member

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    Considering that road/train transport is rarely/ever integrated, I can see no reason why they should.

    And living in a rural area with little to no public transport you get used to it and find ways around it.

    And as for your last paragraph; you must be joking!!
     
  4. marshmallow

    marshmallow Member

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    It's not always possible to get a lift, and taxis can be expensive!

    I'm serious, one of the reasons I don't like cycling in the evening is that sadly people do drink and drive :frown:
     
  5. AlterEgo

    AlterEgo Established Member

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    It’s not completely unknown for TOCs to pay for a taxi but there generally would have to be some pretty severe extenuating circumstances. In four years handling complaints and correspondence I can probably count the number of times I refunded a taxi fare in those circumstances on the fingers of one hand.

    In general, you need to ensure you have the means to look after yourself in an emergency.
     
  6. Darandio

    Darandio Established Member

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    Well, as you want them to cover you late at night then why not the morning too? You can't get a taxi in the morning because they can be too expensive so you get the bus. The bus is then late and you miss your 07:30 advance. By your logic and wanting responsibility for the whole journey I now imagine you will want to travel on the next service at no extra charge?
     
  7. marshmallow

    marshmallow Member

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    Hmm...as the bus is late, if anyone takes responsibility it should be the bus timetable, however I have more sympathy for bus companies in this situation since traffic can be so hard to predict. But perhaps in an ideal world there would be an arrangement whereby in this situation the bus company pays a small fee (not the full cost of a new ticket) to the train company and the passenger is allowed to travel on the next train.

    In fact, often when there are train disruptions, train companies allow people to travel on local buses using their ticket so this shows that train and bus companies do have arrangements with each other. Out of interest, how do they agree how much to pay the bus company in this situation?
     
  8. Llanigraham

    Llanigraham Established Member

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    Feeble excuse.
    Ever heard of making forward arrangements, or planning?

    So by that logic (??) you would have to provide a bus service between every town and village that contains a pub that people are likely wanting to go to.
    Just thinking locally that would need more than 5 bus routes most of which don't even have a route in the daytime.

    I suggest you join the real world.
     
  9. Llanigraham

    Llanigraham Established Member

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    Do you realise that in many areas there is no "connection", real or imagined, between bus services and trains? In fact there are even railway stations that aren't on bus routes!

    And in this area I have never heard of tickets being exchangable between the 2 when there are delays.

    I'm intrigued to know how "rural" you live.
     
  10. marshmallow

    marshmallow Member

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    Yes, the plan is to take the bus

    In an ideal world, yes but I know that it wouldn't happen in practice. I think that there is certainly scope for later buses in places though. My local bus normally has its last service around 20:15, however on Fridays and Saturdays they have later buses going on until 22:15. The 22:15 service is normally quite busy so I would imagine that it would be sufficiently used if it ran every day, and also that even services would get used if they were offered.

    True, however my main point is that if there is a bus stop at or near a station, then people may plan to connect the two, whereas if there wasn't a bus route then people would have made other arrangements in the first place (perhaps they would be more likely to buy a car for example).

    I have seen this in several places, for example around Gatwick Airport

    I live in a small village on a peninsula around 8 miles from the nearest station and city. At least the advantage of being on a peninsula and having only one main road off it means a reasonably high demand for buses along that route. There are of course more rural places; nevertheless it's too far to walk really, not very safe to cycle it in the dark (I have done this!) and a taxi costs around £20 (or more after 22:00). Based on basic assumptions that a bus driver earns around £10 an hour, and fuel costs around 50p/mile [and assuming that other marginal costs are neglible], given that it takes less than hour for the bus to complete it's round trip, I would imagine that it costs the bus company around £18 for each extra service that it runs...it only takes one person needing to take a taxi for it to be potentially better overall if there was another bus service.

    To be honest it really is a vicious circle that most people drive due to rural bus services often being limited, but then they are limited because most people drive. I'm not saying that bus services could be perfect everywhere, however if this vicious circle could be broken then overall, people could be saving money and perhaps even time (in terms of less traffic, being able to do things on the bus that one couldn't do while driving etc.) as well as helping the environment.
     
    Last edited: 14 Nov 2017
  11. bb21

    bb21 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Obligation? No.

    I would, however, recommend/validate reasonable taxi fare refunds on escalated cases if the customer were delayed by 120 minutes or more as a general rule, or 60 minutes or more at extreme ends of the day, and genuinely had no other option.

    I would not in any case recommend any goodwill gesture if the complainant were rude, or made unreasonable demands.

    That is what I normally work to. YMMV
     
  12. Starmill

    Starmill Established Member

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    Might they? Yes. Definitely, they might.

    I've been in situations where many people have been arriving at Manchester Piccadilly at 0200, some as much as 6-7 hours late. People were offered taxis to wherever they wanted, including Bury for a group of people who had tram tickets, the last tram having long gone. Certainly no obligation to provide that. People who had onward train connections were being taken by taxi straight to their accommodation too, rather than a station, on account of the time of day. Again, no obligation to provide that.
     
    Last edited: 14 Nov 2017
  13. Llanigraham

    Llanigraham Established Member

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    I would suggest Marshmallow that what you consider rural doesn't mean the same thing as around here in Mid Wales.
    We are lucky to see any buses after 1900, and then only on the A road.
    And as for getting buses to every village with a pub..........cuckoo land!
     
  14. marshmallow

    marshmallow Member

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    That sounds reasonable, although in an ideal world shorter delays would be covered as they would if a train was missed.

    Again, that is reasonable, and shows responsibility.

    Fair enough, although 8 miles is still quite a long way if you get off a train in the evening and the last bus has gone.
     
  15. Arctic Troll

    Arctic Troll Established Member

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    A bus? You're lucky to get a bus!

    Where my daughter lives there's one bus a week...on Sundays, and only in the summer for the walkers.

    Joking aside, if there's no bus there's no consequential loss. But you've already had to make alternative arrangements. It's not a surprise.

    The law around consequential loss has changed and TOCs should pay up where the loss is as a result of the industry's failure to provide a service with reasonable care and skill (but not for other reasons, such as a fatality or bad weather). However you won't get them to admit the law has changed, Passenger Focus are as much use as a chocolate teapot, and nobody is really going to sue for a £30-40 taxi fare.

    bb21 has the right attitude, really.
     
  16. sheff1

    sheff1 Established Member

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    I can see someone doing so at some point.
     
    Last edited: 14 Nov 2017

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