East Coast rewards after February 2015?

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Hadders

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Tickets will need to be booked by 30th September - 12 weeks from then doesn't take you into 2016.
My apologies, you are correct. I've just checked and to clarify you have to have booked travel by 30 September, so 12 weeks from then will be the latest you'll be able to travel on a Rewards ticket.
 
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Hadders

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Hmmm. Somewhat contrasting opinions from VTEC and Directly Operated Railways.

Virgintrainseastcoast.com/#loyalty-question-1

Virgin Trains East Coast

We found that a significant majority of East Coast customers were not members of the Rewards scheme...
http://www.directlyoperatedrailways.co.uk/PDF/DORReportAccounts2014.pdf

Directly Operated Railways

By the end of the financial year more than 587,000 members had signed up for East Coast’s Rewards scheme. The scheme allows members to redeem points earned for benefits, which may be either tickets for travel, or a variety of third party benefits. Tickets for travel account for the majority of points redeemed and during the year Rewards members accounted for 32% of all bookings through East Coast’s own website, www.eastcoast.co.uk, and 59% of all spend through the channel.
Generally speaking 32% of customers and 59% of spend is a very high take up rate for a loyalty scheme. I wonder if VTEC are starting to regret their decision on Rewards?
 
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ModernRailways

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Hmmm. Somewhat contrasting opinions from VTEC and Directly Operated Railways.

Virgintrainseastcoast.com/#loyalty-question-1



http://www.directlyoperatedrailways.co.uk/PDF/DORReportAccounts2014.pdf



Generally speaking 32% of customers and 59% of spend is a very high take up rate for a loyalty scheme. I wonder if VTEC are starting to regret their decision on Rewards?
They've been clever with their wording. Most 'East Coast' customers they may have asked might not be Rewards users because they actually book with TheTrainline (or elsewhere) or actually book at the station. However most 'EastCoast.co.uk' customers have a Rewards account. I know I have multiple EC accounts, but not all have a Rewards account linked up.

Also, when asking people about Nectar they will have likely asked something like 'Would you like to be able to get money off cinema tickets, and other places that accept Nectar whilst booking train tickets' compared to the East Coast scheme of 'Would you like to earn free things after you spend money buying train tickets. Only limited options.' I know which most people would choose.

And 2,000 people is a ridiculously low amount of people. When you think there are at least 500,000 reward members, not even 1% of customers were asked...
 

DaveNewcastle

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And 2,000 people is a ridiculously low amount of people.
That sample size is not "ridiculous".
If the sample is properly distributed over the relevant indicators of behaviour and opinion, then adequately accurate extrapolations can be made. For travel on one of the UK's rail operators that sample size should be adequate to capture preferences and trends.

They've been clever with their wording. . .
I agree. As mentioned previously, the survey would have been constructed to provide support for a decision that had already been made. "Policy-led research".
 
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yorkie

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Hmmm. Somewhat contrasting opinions from VTEC and Directly Operated Railways.
This is consistent with Virgin. Unable to see reality and making things up, and certainly not listening to their customers!
Generally speaking 32% of customers and 59% of spend is a very high take up rate for a loyalty scheme. I wonder if VTEC are starting to regret their decision on Rewards?
They will NEVER admit regret, and NEVER admit their mistake. They will assume that everyone will continue to use the site regardless.
I've been out of action for 10 days with being in hospital so not really kept up to date on this.

I've got around 850 points - if I got a 1st and a standard rewards ticket before the end of Feb, I'll have until the end of September to use them - is that correct?
That would give you 135 points spare.

It may be better value to purchase a £70 evoucher, you will then instantly get 70 points and be able to get 2 x 1st Rewards.
 

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And 2,000 people is a ridiculously low amount of people. When you think there are at least 500,000 reward members, not even 1% of customers were asked...
Maybe, maybe not but again Ill ask the question which no one can answer - how many of them used EC services?

Its a very generous scheme to administer especially if you are only getting commission from selling tickets yet giving out free tickets to travel the length of the country.


*sits back and waits for 'but the seats would've been empty anyway brigade'*


Let it go for crying out loud people - its going. Done. Finished. Use up your points and worry about something that actually matters.
 

Starmill

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*sits back and waits for 'but the seats would've been empty anyway brigade'*


Let it go for crying out loud people - its going. Done. Finished. Use up your points and worry about something that actually matters.
I don't get why you're so upset. It is mutually beneficial - East Coast increases their own market share of online bookings and gained a great big chunk of customer goodwill, and hardly have to give anything up at all in return.
 

ModernRailways

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*sits back and waits for 'but the seats would've been empty anyway brigade'*


Let it go for crying out loud people - its going. Done. Finished. Use up your points and worry about something that actually matters.
As has been said it got East Coast business that they otherwise wouldn't have. So whilst it may be a small % of the final price it's still something they wouldn't have had otherwise. Also, remember that to get points on a ticket where you didn't use EC you still had to spend £25 (?), and I'm guessing EC chose that for a reason.

I also imagine most people booking travelled with East Coast, there may be the odd one who didn't but they will have likely been few and far between and if so, the chances are they weren't using the free EC tickets anyway and redeeming their points on something else.

I've already started using Southern for their Rainy Day Guarantee because I've no chance of getting enough points (without spending £1-200 on an eVoucher) for a free EC ticket.

To me, it seems like the guy in charge doesn't really know much about the scheme and what EC have built up. Virgin are used to starting things themselves and being the 'revolution to the line' (WC is the shining example), East Coast however they are taking over from an already well respected company that already has a great customer base and it seems to me like they're not quite sure what to do.

The fact they've had to put out another statement about the state of the Rewards scheme should speak volumes to them. There's no positives to Nectar over the East Coast scheme other than you can earn points whilst you shop elsewhere.

But spending £255 on EC Rewards is 'one Free Standard Single', £255 with Nectar gets you £2.55. Which is better?
 

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I don't get why you're so upset. It is mutually beneficial - East Coast increases their own market share of online bookings and gained a great big chunk of customer goodwill, and hardly have to give anything up at all in return.
Im not upset.

Im not fussed about it either way - doesn't benefit me in the slightest either way Im pointing out that there is no point in crying about it going - people have had good times from it without even travelling with the operator(who with their own advances makes the free tickets more worthwhile).

Im quite happy just sitting here pointing out that people not using EC were getting a cracking deal for not even travelling with them so you cant cry when its gone.

Yeah nectar is a poor substitute but these are businesses here and if that concept is a struggle for people then so be it. Shop elsewhere - that's a free market economy
 

Essexman

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Unless the full data and methology are release a survey is of limited (if an) value - they are very easily manipulated to give the results the people commissioning the survey want.

Feel free to delete as off subject if you wish, but here's an article I've recently written on another subject, but that illustrates this point.

http://www.kumb.com/article.php?id=3539
 

Kite159

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Going though my emails from my holiday I noticed a survey link from arriva (from cross country) asking questions about loyalty scheme. Next group of TOCs to go to nectar?

Time to try and use up some of my free tickets if I can find any train which has free tickets available on.
 

ModernRailways

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Going though my emails from my holiday I noticed a survey link from arriva (from cross country) asking questions about loyalty scheme. Next group of TOCs to go to nectar?
Looked to me like they were interested in doing a scheme, possibly like ECs though or joining with Clubcard or Nectar.

I still think Tesco has the better scheme in Clubcard, but then I'm likely biased on that :p
 

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Looked to me like they were interested in doing a scheme, possibly like ECs though or joining with Clubcard or Nectar.

I still think Tesco has the better scheme in Clubcard, but then I'm likely biased on that :p
So 3 choices of she me then. Guess which one they would likely pick I'm?

The cheapest one.
 

ichabod05

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I know EC have the rule that to get points when booking on other operators, you need to spend £22, but does this apply to vouchers? I'm on 504pts and just need another 6 (which stings a little since a few weeks ago, 504 would have been enough). So I'm wondering if I buy a £6 voucher, whether that'd be enough to give me the 510 I need, and how long it would take to get the points?
 
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andrewkeith5

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Hmmm. Somewhat contrasting opinions from VTEC and Directly Operated Railways.

Generally speaking 32% of customers and 59% of spend is a very high take up rate for a loyalty scheme. I wonder if VTEC are starting to regret their decision on Rewards?
Quick statistics lesson. There is no clever wording in anything there - read it carefully. Virgin say:

A significant majority of customers were not members of the scheme.

You then say 32% of customers were members of the scheme. Which leaves a fairly massive 68% of customers not members of the scheme, which cannot not be argued to be a majority, and which most statisticians would call a significant majority.

Note how Virgin never mentioned spend. So basically all your statistics are saying is that the people who use EC Rewards are the people who spend the most. Ergo, the people who are loyal already and, given this is a railway and there aren't too many alternatives, are probably going to stay loyal. Id expect virgin to launch something like the traveller scheme for some of this audience, and some of the audience are likely to be people like those on this forum where only a very minor ticket revenue goes to EC. These people are clearly not the priority for VTEC. Sorry.

I did enjoy the rewards scheme but only ever earned enough points to use the first class lounge once in a while. Not everyone always benefits from these things, and Virgin have clearly now decided they would rather the majority of customers used the scheme but didn't earn as much in value each. Which isn't always a bad idea.
 

Hadders

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You can easily get statistics to say anything you want them to say.

My point is that you have DOR trumpeting the success of the scheme in their annual report, and VTEC then effectively saying something a bit different.

I just wanted to point out the contrast in views. I've had more than my share of Rewards and am sad to see it go but we have to move on...
 

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I know EC have the rule that to get points when booking on other operators, you need to spend £22, but does this apply to vouchers? I'm on 504pts and just need another 6 (which stings a little since a few weeks ago, 504 would have been enough). So I'm wondering if I buy a £6 voucher, whether that'd be enough to give me the 510 I need, and how long it would take to get the points?
Yes it applies to Vouchers - you either need a £6 EC AP (or £4 First Class) or to spend £22 on other tickets/voucher
 

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You can easily get statistics to say anything you want them to say.

My point is that you have DOR trumpeting the success of the scheme in their annual report, and VTEC then effectively saying something a bit different.

I just wanted to point out the contrast in views. I've had more than my share of Rewards and am sad to see it go but we have to move on...
Well yes the scheme is successful if you measure it by having 500K members and they keep purchasing from you.

They probably have that amount of people travel on one of their services a week at least though so that puts it in perspective
 

Hadders

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Should be available the next day. I bought an £80 voucher a few days ago to get me to one last standard ticket. That is now showing in my available points.
I purchased an evoucher yesterday to get my points total up to 920. At 7am this morning it wasn't showing in my Rewards account but by 8am it had been updated.
 

Bungle73

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Why have VTEC got an image of a train on the front page of their website that doesn't actually run on the EC route? :-?
 

Hadders

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The 'new' website is now up. Basically it's exactly the same layout as before with East Coast purple replaced by Virgin red. It even has exactly the same layout etc.

Anyway, the important bit is that my pending Rewards points have been converted to actual points available to redeem.
 

SteveP29

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So I've just had a look at the East Coast site.

Have I got this right?
They're giving double points in March (4 points per £ spent), so normally:
£1 spent = 2 points
Say a first class return from Edinburgh to London is £60 (I tend to have one trip to London every year and for almost 5 hours, I'd prefer the comfort compared to the frankly awful seats in standard)
I would need 12,000 points (after June 1st 2015), therefore, need to spend £6000 to get that free ticket.
Compared to EC Rewards, I could get that journey for 900 points (£900)
Bit harsh, isn't it?
 

TBY-Paul

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Just had a quick look at the New Website, and came across,


Things you should know
•Virgin Trains East Coast eVouchers are only valid against Virgin Trains East Coast Advance tickets purchased at virgintrainseastcoast.com
•The eVouchers are valid for 12 months from the date you redeem your Nectar points
•You’ll need a Virgin Trains East Coast account to spend your eVouchers. If you don’t already have one, you can set one up here
•Any unspent value on your eVoucher will be stored in your Virgin trains East Coast account until you spend it. This will expire after 12 months though, so if you haven’t spent it by then it will be removed from your account
Does this mean
1. eVouchers I just bought will expire in 12 months.
2. I can't use them to purchase tickets from e.g King's Cross to Bristol TM. (I have a free ticket I was going to use from Darlington to King's Cross).
 

dcsprior

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Just had a quick look at the New Website, and came across,




Does this mean
1. eVouchers I just bought will expire in 12 months.
2. I can't use them to purchase tickets from e.g King's Cross to Bristol TM. (I have a free ticket I was going to use from Darlington to King's Cross).
What do you mean by "just bought"? Do you mean you bought them today, or that you bought them yesterday to take you EC rewards points balance over a certain threshold? If its the former, then I'm not sure, but if its the latter:
1. No - mine still show an expiry date of 31/12/9999
2. No - I've just bought an Off Peak Day Return for a journey which is only possible using ScotRail, and paid for it using one of my eVouchers.
 

Mojo

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What do you mean by "just bought"? Do you mean you bought them today, or that you bought them yesterday to take you EC rewards points balance over a certain threshold? If its the former, then I'm not sure, but if its the latter:
1. No - mine still show an expiry date of 31/12/9999
2. No - I've just bought an Off Peak Day Return for a journey which is only possible using ScotRail, and paid for it using one of my eVouchers.
I read it about talking about eVouchers "bought" with Nectar Points, not Gift eVouchers bought with money.
 

TBY-Paul

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What do you mean by "just bought"? Do you mean you bought them today, or that you bought them yesterday to take you EC rewards points balance over a certain threshold? If its the former, then I'm not sure, but if its the latter:
1. No - mine still show an expiry date of 31/12/9999
2. No - I've just bought an Off Peak Day Return for a journey which is only possible using ScotRail, and paid for it using one of my eVouchers.
Yes it's the latter. I knew I was going to Bristol in July, so I bought (Fri) a eVouchers with enough value to get me up to the threshold for a free ticket. I'm planning to use the eVoucher for the KGX-BRI leg.

I read it about talking about eVouchers "bought" with Nectar Points, not Gift eVouchers bought with money.
I see what you mean, there appears to be two types of eVouchers. I just saw "eVouchers" and panicked. :oops:
 
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