FCC SX Evening Restrictions

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Julian G

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A PDF version of the public information leaflet is available at:

http://www.firstcapitalconnect.co.uk/uploads/DL_Leaflet.pdf

Please be aware the restrictions are quite complex and vary between
the TL bit and the WAGN bit, and depends on travel from south or north
of the Thames and/or north or south or in or through the Travelcard area.

Code:
FAQ for FCC off peak ticket SX evening restrictions 


FAQs: Frequently Asked Questions

This section lists questions, which we anticipate you may be asked
over the coming weeks.

01 Which trains are restricted?
All northbound trains that depart from either London King s Cross,
Moorgate, King s Cross Thameslink or St Pancras between 1630 and 1901
Monday to Friday. This includes GNER and Midland Mainline services.
Please remember that the Cheap Day Return and 0ne Day Travelcard
restrictions on GNER services begin 35 minutes earlier at 1555 and
finish in line with our restrictions at 1901.

02 Why are the restrictions on these trains?
Because demand for travel on these trains is significantly higher than
the number of seats available. Given the size of our fleet, we have
already endeavoured to expand capacity on these services by
diagramming as many carriages on peak trains as possible. Therefore
these restrictions are the next step in our plans to manage demand
with the aim of improving the quality of the journey for all our
customers.

03 Is travel restricted if customers join the train further along the
route?
The return portions of all off-peak tickets are restricted on these
trains if you join them within the London Travelcard Boundary (except
for stations north of Finsbury Park and West Hampstead). Travel is not
restricted if your entire journey is outside the Travelcard area. The
last stations within the boundary are Crews Hill, Hadley Wood and
Elstree and Borehamwood. So for example, an off-peak return ticket
would be valid for travel on the 1823 from Welwyn Garden City to
Letchworth because although this train departs King's Cross at 1752,
and is a restricted train, your journey is outside the Travelcard
area. However, you would not be able to use an off-peak ticket on this
train for travel from Finsbury Park to Letchworth because Finsbury
Park is within the restricted area.
The restrictions do not apply to journeys within the London Travelcard
area, so for example a journey from Finsbury Park to Alexandra Palace
does not come under the restrictions.

04 Why do the restrictions not apply for travel solely within the
London Travelcard Boundary?
Because if we did restrict our off-peak tickets within the London
Travelcard area this would be inconsistent with the 0ne Day Travelcard
arrangements which would be confusing for customers.

05 Do restrictions apply to cross-London journeys, such as Brighton to
Bedford services which depart London within the restricted time?
Restrictions will not apply to customers travelling across the
Travelcard boundary area or South of it. So for example, a customer
travelling from Brighton on the 1703 to Bedford, arr1938 would be able
to travel using the return portion of an off-peak ticket even thought
this train departs King's Cross at 1836.
Restrictions apply to off-peak return tickets on these trains if a
customer joins the train within the London Travelcard Boundary (except
for stations north of Finsbury Park and West Hampstead), and is
travelling northwards to outside the boundary. East Croydon is the
last station inside the Travelcard Boundary on the First Capital
Connect route in South London. So for example, a customer would not be
able to travel with an off-peak return ticket on the 1747 from East
Croydon to Bedford, or from any of the ex-Thameslink stations in South
London as these are all within the boundary.

06 Why are the restrictions only on the return portion of the tickets?
The restrictions are on the return portion only because we want to
achieve a balance between reducing overcrowding, and minimising the
inconvenience to our customers. 0utward off-peak travel on these
trains is not heavy and restricting these tickets would not have a
significant impact on overcrowding.

07 Why are the restrictions only on Northbound flows?
The restrictions are only on the Northbound flows because flows
Southwards north of London at this time of day are not crowded. Fares
on most Southbound flows out of London are controlled by other Train
0perating Companies.

08 Do these restrictions apply in the morning peak too?
Restrictions already apply to the use of off-peak tickets in the
morning peak.

09 What are we doing to reduce overcrowding in the morning peak?
First Capital Connect will continue to work closely with the
Department of Transport to find a long term solution to overcrowding
which will require substantial investment. In the meantime we are
looking at options which may provide some short term relief. In
particular we are working with the other Train 0perating Companies in
the region to develop the Brighton Route Utilisation Strategy which
will implement timetable changes with the aim of providing extra
capacity and additional seats on all trains south of London, be that
First Capital Connect, Southern or Gatwick Express.

10 Which tickets are restricted?
Cheap Day Returns;
0ne Day Travelcards (off-peak);
Family Travelcards; and
DaySave tickets.
Between 1730 and 1830 Monday to Friday the restrictions will also
apply to the return portions of Network Away Break and Saver Return
tickets.

11 I am an RPI. How should I deal with a customer travelling on an
off-peak return ticket on one of the restricted trains?
Explain to customer that off-peak return tickets are not valid for
travel on this train, and that if they wish to travel on this service
they need to buy a full fare ticket or have a season ticket. Charge
them the appropriate excess fare to make ticket valid for travel in
line with National Conditions of Carriage. Explain to them that in the
future if they wish to travel using an off-peak return ticket they
need to travel on a train that departs from the London termini before
1630 or after 1901 (or if travelling on a Saver or Network Away Break
tickets, before 1730 or after 1830). Hand them a leaflet explaining
the restrictions.
We will widely publicise the changes, particularly at point of sale
where all booking office staff have been briefed to advise customers
of the restrictions and posters will be displayed at all stations and
leaflets made available. There will also be posters on trains and
leaflets handed out before the introduction of the restrictions. We
are investigating the option of displaying an on-screen message on
self-service ticket machines.

12 Who is affected by these changes?
Season ticket holders and those travelling on full-fare tickets will
not be affected by these changes. Customers who will notice the change
will be those travelling after the morning peak (off-peak tickets are
already restricted in the morning peak) to London, and then wanting to
return in the evening peak. These are likely to be business travellers
and off-peak leisure users, e.g. shoppers, families, 0AP's etc.

13 How will they be affected?
They will not be able to travel using the return portion of off-peak
tickets on the restricted services. They will be able to use their
off-peak tickets if they are willing to travel later or earlier to
avoid the restricted trains. If they do wish to use these trains then
they need to buy a valid ticket before they travel.

14 Which tickets will be valid for travel on these services?
Standard or First 0pen Returns;
Standard or First Day Returns;
Standard or First Peak Day Travelcards; and
Season Tickets.

15 Are there any exceptions? If so, what are they?
Yes there are exceptions:
Customers travelling to Ely, Littleport, Downham Market, Watlington or
King's Lynn are able to use their off-peak tickets on the restricted
trains because the lower number of through trains on this route means
that under the new restrictions, the first non-restricted train
travelling to these destinations would not leave King's Cross until
1945 which is too long to make customers wait.
Travel inside the London Travelcard Boundary is not restricted in the
evening peak, because if we restrict our evening off-peak tickets this
will be inconsistent with the 0ne Day Travelcard arrangements and
potentially confusing for customers.
Customers travelling on the outward portion of an off-peak ticket will
be able to use these services. The restrictions only apply to the
return portion of off-peak tickets.
Northbound travel on the return portion of an off-peak ticket in the
evening peak where a customer joins a train outside of the London
Travelcard boundary is not restricted, so for example from Luton to
Bedford.
Within the Travelcard area, customers travelling northbound from
stations north of Finsbury Park and West Hampstead will not be restricted.

16 Why do the restrictions apply to Waterbeach but not to Ely and beyond?
Because the frequency of services to Waterbeach is greater than to the
stations north of Ely. Also because Waterbeach is close to Cambridge
and it wouldn't be able to cope with the number of people that would
divert there if it wasn't covered by the evening peak restrictions.

17 Why have we introduced these restrictions?
Because we need to take steps to reduce overcrowding on our evening
peak services leaving London by managing the supply and demand for
these services. We plan that the restrictions will have the effect of
prioritising seats on these key trains for customers travelling on
full fare or season tickets. We have already taken steps to improve
the number of seats available by diagramming these trains to be formed
of as many carriages as possible.

18 Won't these restrictions just move the overcrowding onto the
unrestricted trains?
We have carried out careful analysis of when and where the
restrictions apply to ensure that they have the most effect on
reducing overcrowding whilst trying to minimise the impact on off-peak
ticket holders. We have been particularly careful to avoid simply
moving the overcrowding problems to other trains and our analysis
shows that this should not happen because the timing and scope of the
restrictions will help to spread the demand. We have also doubled the
number of carriages from 4 to 8 on the 1902 service from King's Cross
(Thameslink) in order to meet the expected demand for this train. We
think there may be one train, (the 1615 King's Cross to Cambridge)
that could become crowded after introducing the restrictions and will
consider the possibility of running a longer train on this service
once we can see what the effect is.

19 Why are Network Away breaks and Saver Returns only restricted from
1730 to 1830?
By maintaining the availability of Network Away Break and Saver
tickets for an extended period we can offer the customer more choice
when they decide when they wish to travel and how much they want to
pay although we appreciate that it does add to the complexity of the
restrictions. By extending the restriction to these tickets at the
busiest times we aim to reduce overcrowding on these popular trains.

20 Will restrictions still apply even if a train is delayed and
therefore runs outside the restriction times?
Yes, the restriction applies to the service even if it is delayed,
however in certain circumstances it may be deemed appropriate to lift
restrictions. In these cases station staff and on-board announcements
will keep customers informed.

21 Will restrictions apply when a non-restricted train is delayed into
the restricted times?
No. If a non-restricted train is delayed into restricted times
restrictions will not apply.

22 Will the customer be charged a penalty fare for travelling on a
restricted ticket on these services?
No, the appropriate action in these cases, as laid down in the Penalty
Fare Rules and our policy is that customers travelling on a restricted
ticket will be charged the appropriate excess fare in accordance with
the National Conditions of Carriage.

23 What's to stop customers buying two off-peak single tickets?
Customers can do this, but the cost is more than the standard return
ticket in most cases.

24 What's to stop customers buying an off-peak return ticket to the
boundary and then a point-to-point ticket for the remainder of the
journey?
Nothing, but this would be inconvenient, and the customers who are
affected by these changes are unlikely to be that sophisticated in
their travel habits.
It is possible that a small number of customers will expend
considerable energy in finding loopholes in the new restrictions. We
will monitor this situation and if significant issues arise will
address them in subsequent fares rounds. The Commercial Team will be
very glad to receive feedback from colleagues on the ground.

25 Will restricted tickets go through the automatic gates?
The ticket gates will be programmed to return tickets that are not
valid for travel at the appropriate times.

26 What information has been provided for customers?
Posters are being prepared for distribution and display at all stations.
A leaflet is also being prepared for ticket office staff to hand to
all customers buying tickets and for Revenue Staff to give to
customers found travelling on restricted trains with off-peak return
tickets.
We are investigating the possibility of displaying a message on all
self-service ticket machines.
Posters will be displayed on trains and leaflets distributed on-train
before the restrictions are introduced.
The website will display suitable information to advise Internet
customers and the FirstInfo staff will receive this brief. There will
also be a press release and information in relevant travel and rail
press for other operators.

27 Will staff travelling on these services be affected by these
restrictions?
No. These specific restrictions do not apply to staff travel. For
details of staff travel restrictions visit:
www.atoc.org

Examples

Here are some examples to help you understand how the new off-peak
restrictions will work.

Example 1
If a customer wants to travel from King's Cross on the 1707, arriving
in Peterborough at 1810, can they do this on the return portion of an
off-peak ticket?
Answer: No. They would not be able to use the return portion of their
off-peak ticket for this journey as this train is restricted.

Example 2
If a customer wants to travel on the 1734 Luton to Bedford arr 1758
can they do this on the return portion of an off-peak ticket?
Answer: Yes. They would be able to use the return portion of their
off-peak ticket for this journey because although this train is
restricted (having left King's Cross Thameslink at 1702), their entire
journey is outside the London Travelcard area.

Example 3
If a customer wants to travel from West Hampstead (Thameslink) to St
Albans on the 1632 service arr St Albans at 1700, can they do this on
the return portion of an off-peak ticket?
Answer: Yes. They would be able to use their off-peak ticket on this
train because this train departed from King's Cross Thameslink before
1630, at 1624.

Example 4
If a customer wants to travel from Kentish Town to Mill Hill Broadway,
can they do this on the return portion of an off-peak ticket?
Answer: Yes. They would not be restricted when using an off-peak
ticket because this journey is within the London Travelcard Boundary.

Example 5
If a customer wants to travel on the 1619 from Streatham to St Albans
arriving at 1730 can they do this on the return portion of an off-peak
ticket?
Answer: No. They would not be able to use their off-peak ticket to
make this journey because as this train leaves King's Cross Thameslink
at 1654, it is restricted.

Example 6
If a customer wants to travel on the 1642 from London Bridge to
Farringdon, arr 1702 can they do this on the return portion of an
off-peak ticket?
Answer: Yes. They would be able to travel on this service with an
off-peak return ticket because their journey is entirely within the
London Travelcard Boundary.

Example 7
If a customer wants to travel on the 1845 from King's Cross to King's
Lynn can they do this on the return portion of an off-peak ticket?
Answer: Yes. They would be able to travel on an off-peak return ticket
because these restrictions do not apply to stations on the King's Lynn
branch north of Waterbeach. However, they would not be able to travel
from King's Cross using an off-peak return ticket to any other
stations in a northbound direction on this train.

Staff Brief
Code:
Changes to 0ff-Peak tickets usage from June 2006
Customer Services, Revenue Protection and Customer Relations Staff
Briefing Document
Summary
To reduce overcrowding on our services First Capital Connect will be
introducing restrictions on the use of off-peak tickets on our
northbound evening peak services from London, coinciding with the
introduction of the new timetable. This step is part of our strategy
to proactively manage supply and demand for these popular services and
improve the quality of the journey for all our customers. 0ur plan is
that the new restrictions to off-peak tickets will have the effect of
prioritising seats on these trains for season or full-fare ticket holders.
The Changes in Detail:
From 11 June, customers will not be able to travel using the return
portion of the following off-peak tickets on any northbound trains
that are timetabled to depart from either London King's Cross,
Moorgate, King's Cross Thameslink or St Pancras between 1630 and 1901
Monday to Friday:
Cheap Day Returns;
0ne Day Travelcards (off-peak);
Family Travelcards; and
DaySave tickets.

This includes return northbound journeys on these restricted services
from all stations within the London Travelcard Area, other than
stations north of Finsbury Park and West Hampstead i.e. journeys
commencing at Cricklewood or Harringay and all London Travelcard Area
Stations north thereof are unrestricted. Return journeys commencing
from all stations within Zones 1 & 2 and from all stations on the
Wimbledon loop or at East Croydon and traveling northbound beyond the
London Travelcard Area will be restricted.

Between 1730 and 1830 Monday to Friday these restrictions will also
apply to the return portions of Network Away Breaks and Saver Return
tickets

Restrictions will also apply to GNER evening services northbound out
of London King's Cross to Stevenage and Peterborough and Midland
Mainline evening services northbound from St Pancras to Luton Airport
Parkway, Luton and Bedford. We have worked with GNER and they have
amended their existing evening peak restrictions so they fit more
neatly with the First Capital Connect conditions. The GNER service
restrictions for Cheap Day Returns and 0ne Day Travelcards begin at
1555, 35 minutes earlier than First Capital Connect, however they
finish at 1901 in line with our new restrictions.

These restrictions will not apply to tickets for Ely, Littleport,
Downham Market, Watlington and King's Lynn because of the limited
number of through trains on this route.

These restrictions will not apply to travel within the London
Travelcard boundary, that being stations southwards from and including
Crews Hill, Hadley Wood and Elstree and Borehamwood. This is to avoid
any inconsistency with the 0ne Day Travelcard arrangements.
If customers want to return from London during the restricted times,
they will need to ensure that they have a valid ticket for their
journey. Tickets which will be valid for travel at these times are:
Standard or First 0pen Returns;
Standard or First Day Returns;
Standard or First Peak Day Travelcards; and
Season Tickets.

Network Away Break and Saver Return tickets will be valid for travel
on trains departing up until 1730 and after 1830.

There are no changes to restrictions currently in place at other times
of day and we are not introducing restrictions on southbound flows,
i.e. contra-peak towards London in the evening, or on trains
travelling out of London towards Brighton, Wimbledon or Sutton.

First Capital Connect will not be making changes to our fares at this
time, other than to correct minor anomalies that exist in the current
fare range. These are the harmonisation of Thameslink route Travelcard
boundary zone fares with the equivalent station-to-station fare, and
the correction of fares on flows via West Hampstead along the North
London Line.
Automatic Ticket Barriers
0ur automatic ticket barriers at Bedford, Elstree and Borehamwood,
Luton, Luton Airport Parkway, St Albans and King's Cross Thameslink
will be programmed to return these tickets from London during the
appropriate times. Station staff may experience an increased number of
customers requiring assistance and a ticket upgrade, particularly
within the first couple of weeks of the restrictions being introduced.
Penalty Fares
Customers travelling on a restricted ticket should not be subject to a
penalty fare but should be charged the appropriate excess fare that is
required to make their ticket valid in line with the National Rail
Conditions of Carriage.
Conclusion
First Capital Connect anticipate that as a result of the introduction
of these restrictions demand for the key evening peak services will be
reduced, although on a small number of trains a seat may still not be
available for everyone for their entire journey. We will continue to
develop strategies to reduce overcrowding and to improve the quality
of travel on all our services.
Timetable Presentation
You will have noticed that the new timetable (Train Times) effective
from 11 June does not show the shading which highlighted peak and
off-peak trains in previous Thameslink route timetables. This is
because it was felt to be unrealistic to meaningfully shade the
morning peak services between Peterborough, King's Lynn, Cambridge,
Stevenage and King's Cross/Moorgate. Moreover, it would be impossible
to represent the new evening peak restrictions diagrammatically. The
presentation of both Train Times booklets has therefore been harmonised.

Full details of the first Monday - Friday trains on the Thameslink
route on which off-peak tickets are valid are shown in Section E of
the National Fares Manual 92:
Tickets with the restriction code TN (northbound) allow northbound
travel on or after the train shown on page E55.
Tickets with the restriction code TS (southbound) allow southbound
travel on or after the train shown on page E56.

In the updated National Fares Manual (93), which will be issued
shortly, full details of the first Monday - Friday trains on the
Thameslink route on which off-peak tickets are valid are shown in
Section E as follows:
Tickets with the restriction code TN (northbound) allow northbound
travel on or after the train shown on page E50.
Tickets with the restriction code TS (southbound) allow southbound
travel on or after the train shown on page E50 - 51.
 
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yorkie

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That is so confusing, and will lead to many arguments.

Anyway it's dead easy to get round their unfair fares. Simply get an offpeak travelcard (valid because they can't restrict travelcards), then BZ6 or Hadley Wood to your destination.

There is no doubt that, for example, a Off peak travelcard plus a CDR Hadley Wood to Welwyn Garden City is valid on a stopper.

But I am 99% sure that an Off peak travelcard plus a BZ6 CDR to Welwyn GC is valid on a fast train, they cannot stop this, as they say themselves "Because if we did restrict our off-peak tickets within the London Travelcard area this would be inconsistent with the 0ne Day Travelcard arrangements which would be confusing for customers.", and the BZ6 ticket starts at the Zone 6 boundary, which is well north of Finsbury Park, so it must be valid, but I can imagine some over zealous RPIs arguing against it.

I urge passengers to seek combinations of tickets that ensure they are not unfairly penalised!

And going to Cambridge? Get a cheap ticket to Ely and avoid the expensive fares, as restrictions don't apply on tickets to Ely!

Loads of ways round it!
 

Galvanize

Member
Joined
8 Jun 2005
Messages
973
Location
South East london
yorkie said:
That is so confusing, and will lead to many arguments.

Anyway it's dead easy to get round their unfair fares. Simply get an offpeak travelcard (valid because they can't restrict travelcards), then BZ6 or Hadley Wood to your destination.

There is no doubt that, for example, a Off peak travelcard plus a CDR Hadley Wood to Welwyn Garden City is valid on a stopper.

But I am 99% sure that an Off peak travelcard plus a BZ6 CDR to Welwyn GC is valid on a fast train, they cannot stop this, as they say themselves "Because if we did restrict our off-peak tickets within the London Travelcard area this would be inconsistent with the 0ne Day Travelcard arrangements which would be confusing for customers.", and the BZ6 ticket starts at the Zone 6 boundary, which is well north of Finsbury Park, so it must be valid, but I can imagine some over zealous RPIs arguing against it.

I urge passengers to seek combinations of tickets that ensure they are not unfairly penalised!

And going to Cambridge? Get a cheap ticket to Ely and avoid the expensive fares, as restrictions don't apply on tickets to Ely!

Loads of ways round it!
If you're going to Cambridge, don't go via First Capital connect, go via 'one' instead.

I guess GNER and MML have been warned about the new Fares policy, no doubt GNER's Desperate grippers will do a good job at keeping the passengers from using the expresses to places like Stevenage or Peterborough.

Barry Doe would most likely mention in Rail's Fare Dealer section that this is one of the stupidest peak time fares ever.
 
H

HR2

Guest
This seems a bit against the rules of the game if you ask me. Privatisation was meant to enhance competition IIRC and yet we have two rail firms colluding to move the goalposts after the game has started. Not only that but fixing fares and availablity to boot. Not much competion there is there. Seems more like cartelisation than competition
 

lev441

Member
Joined
1 Oct 2005
Messages
77
its a joke!! FCC are just trying to get around overcrowding by overcharging!! A disgrace.... why the hell did first get the franchise to start with?!?!
 

Table 52

Member
Joined
5 May 2006
Messages
196
It seems that this and the changes to Great Western (mentioned elsewhere) show us what First is really all about. Take over a franchise and then start increasing the fares through restrictions and withdrawals.
Disgrace.
 

yorkie

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I've just realised that the restrictions ONLY apply to RETURN portions of tickets!

So basically, you are only penalised if you are on your return portion of a ticket from somewhere south of, and including, Finsbury Park and West Hampstead but north of, and including East Croydon , and to a destination north of the travelcard boundary (ie. Potters bar or Radlett and north of there), except destinations to Ely and beyond.

If this is the case, simply get your journey to be extended to somewhere where the rules do not apply, or get a combination of tickets!

Perhaps we should run a quiz where someone states a possible ticket, and the person answering has to say "valid" or "not valid". The quick version where you are asked in a rush can be can be called "The weakest RPI", and the version where you can carefully consider your answer can be called "RPIheads", this will consist of a team of passengers versus a team of RPIs.
[EDIT]
Table 52 said:
It seems that this and the changes to Great Western (mentioned elsewhere) show us what First is really all about. Take over a franchise and then start increasing the fares through restrictions and withdrawals.
Disgrace.
Yep :(

I have a better idea. Back in the early 1990s Class 90s hauled long trains on the fast services at peak times (St Neots, Huntingdon, Peterborough only).

There are 90s and 87s spare. There are loads of Mk3s spare. Why not introduce these on about 2 or 3 diagrams to Peterborough, replacing the 12-car 1807, and 1 or 2 of the 8-car diagrams. This would release between 5 and 7 4-car sets, which could be used to strengthen other trains.

It won't happen because it is considered better to price people off the railways and onto the roads. Apparently. :mad:

Anyway it's been done in my improved SimSig timetable ;)
 

Andrew

Member
Joined
7 Jun 2005
Messages
175
Table 52 said:
It seems that this and the changes to Great Western mentioned elsewhere) show us what First is really all about. Take over a franchise and then start increasing the fares through restrictions and withdrawals.
Disgrace.

What did you expect them to do? If they've promised a stupidly high amount of money to the DfT, they've got to make that money. They're not going to make money by reducing fares, or allowing peak time customers to use different (cheaper) tickets. The way to make money is to put the prices up. As long as people still use the trains (which they will) then they'll get more money this way. Duh!

DistrictLine said:
This seems a bit against the rules of the game if you ask me. Privatisation was meant to enhance competition IIRC and yet we have two rail firms colluding to move the goalposts after the game has started. Not only that but fixing fares and availablity to boot. Not much competion there is there. Seems more like cartelisation than competition

It's perfectly acceptable for the train companies to gang up. You can't blame them for using the rules to their advantage. You can, however, blame the people who make up the rules (initially the Conservatives, then Labour). Effectively the TOCs are just introducing restrictions seperately which happen to be the same. Nothing wrong with that whatsoever. It's pretty obvious that privatisation doesn't work, and as for 'moving the goalposts' well why shouldn't they. They run the goalposts - they're allowed to move them in this crazy game of rail privatisation, and if they can make more money by having them somewhere else then that's up to them. You can complain all you like, but it won't help anyone. A much better idea is to pray for the government to see sense and renationalise, and in the meantime get around the stupid fares by listening to Yorkie's advice.
 

yorkie

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Oh yeah, and know your rights!

The restrictions on your ticket are set by the TOC who sets that fare. (NOT necessarily the TOC you bought it from - if any).

A TOC cannot say, for example, "We won't accept any Savers on this train". Well, sadly, some TOCs do say that in their literature but they are not allowed to actually enforce this.

Example 1: MML claim savers cannot be used on any of their trains before 0901. But they have absolutely no control of, for example, the Leeds to Sheffield saver ticket restrictions which are "Valid by any train". So MML simply HAVE to accept such savers on their trains. If they don't like it, TOUGH they can put up with it! One day I'll take great delight in doing this.

Example 2: I'm told "there's a massive sign in Liverpool Street saying 'cheap day returns not valid from LS between 1700-1815'" Oh really? Not quite! again, they can only restrict fares that they control! So if a passenger got a Maryland to Welwyn Garden City cheap day return, and then left Welwyn at, say, 1630, they'd get to Liverpool Street at the so-called CDR not valid time, and they may be scared into thinking their CDR is valid. But that fare would be set by FCC, which would have no such restriction, so it would in fact be valid. But would all staff know? would passengers know?

People may be paying over the odds because of TOCs unfair dodgy practices. Find out your rights and your ticket restrictions BEFORE you agree to buy the ticket and certainly before you travel. KNOW YOUR RIGHTS!!!!
 

richa2002

Established Member
Joined
8 Jun 2005
Messages
2,145
Hi Yorkie.
Would it be possible to get a cheap ticket so I could get from Harpenden to (after 09:30 of course) London and back without paying these stupid fares for the evening peak?
 

Table 52

Member
Joined
5 May 2006
Messages
196
A train company can get around individual restriction codes with a footnote.
The footnote is printed on the bottom of every page of restrictions featuring the ticket it applies to. As such, it's a way of making it apply wholesale and adding to the restrictions already in place.

The current footnote for CDRs is as follows:
NOTE: In addition to the specific restrictions listed, the Off-Peak Day Travelcard/First, Family Travelcard and all_Cheap Day Singles and Returns, Outward and Return are barred:
from London Paddington on Great Western services timed to depart between 1600 and 1915 inclusive Mondays to Fridays (but allowed on the 1722 and 1822 for passengers travelling to stations beyond Oxford).
This restriction also applies from Reading for non-London destinations as
appropiate.
From London Euston on Virgin Trains services timed to depart between 1600 and 1815

As such, if MML were to stick 'Not valid on any MML trains departing before 0901' in that footnote, they'd be allowed to enforce it.

Lucky for us, they don't...
 

Julian G

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yorkie said:
Yep :(

I have a better idea. Back in the early 1990s Class 90s hauled long trains on the fast services at peak times (St Neots, Huntingdon, Peterborough only).

There are 90s and 87s spare. There are loads of Mk3s spare. Why not introduce these on about 2 or 3 diagrams to Peterborough, replacing the 12-car 1807, and 1 or 2 of the 8-car diagrams. This would release between 5 and 7 4-car sets, which could be used to strengthen other trains.
Hmm, If MML didn't take the 9 car Meridians, then they could had been used by WAGN/FCC to replace the 317s and allocate the Meridians onto Long Distance Express Services, and so the 317s will go to do Moorgate-Bedford shuttles,
 

Table 52

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Andrew said:
What did you expect them to do? If they've promised a stupidly high amount of money to the DfT, they've got to make that money. They're not going to make money by reducing fares, or allowing peak time customers to use different (cheaper) tickets. The way to make money is to put the prices up. As long as people still use the trains (which they will) then they'll get more money this way. Duh!

Now now good sir,

I would have expected them to keep to their franchise commitments and make all peak time trains 8 cars in length, in an attempt to manage the customer flows they have in a way that prevents overcrowding. Instead, they've just decided to take their current customer flow and charge it more to reduce it.

And your thought 'as long as people still use trains (which they will)'. is very flawed. The people who HAVE to use trains are commuters. They already buy standard day returns or season tickets. As such, no more revenue will come from them as a result of this change.

The people who use Cheap day returns are leisure travellers. Leisure travellers don't HAVE to use trains, they choose to. As such, i would be expecting FCC revenue to fall as a result of this desison, as fewer people will choose to use a service which won't let them go to London for a cheap day out.
 

yorkie

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Table 52 said:
As such, if MML were to stick 'Not valid on any MML trains departing before 0901' in that footnote, they'd be allowed to enforce it.

Lucky for us, they don't...
To clarify, the footnote would be in the relevant Restriction Code in the fares manual, but it is the TOC who sets the fare who decides what the restriction is. In the case of leeds-sheffield MML has no say as they don't set that fare (Unless they colluded with the TOC that does set them - which is probably Northern Trains).


What they can't do is say that MMLs footnote in their timetable overrides the restriction codes in the fares manual applicable to the ticket.
 

clagmonster

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Richard Armstrong said:
Would it be possible to get a cheap ticket so I could get from Harpenden to (after 09:30 of course) London and back without paying these stupid fares for the evening peak?
Get a cheap day return from London stations to Herpendon, in advance (from web - not the trainline), and use the return portion going into London and the outward portion coming back north.
 

Andrew

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Table 52 said:
I would have expected them to keep to their franchise commitments and make all peak time trains 8 cars in length, in an attempt to manage the customer flows they have in a way that prevents overcrowding. Instead, they've just decided to take their current customer flow and charge it more to reduce it.

If it's a franchise commitment then surely there should be some procedure in place that penalises them if they do not accomplish it. If there is not, then why bother having any franchise commitments? And if there is, then that's valid reason to challenge them. Is this a franchise commitment in a PR sense, or one that they've actually promised the DfT. If they've promised/negotiated it with the DfT then there's (IMO) much more chance of it happening. If it just 'would be nice' then it's not likely to happen if it costs them more.

And your thought 'as long as people still use trains (which they will)'. is very flawed. The people who HAVE to use trains are commuters. They already buy standard day returns or season tickets. As such, no more revenue will come from them as a result of this change.

The people who use Cheap day returns are leisure travellers. Leisure travellers don't HAVE to use trains, they choose to. As such, i would be expecting FCC revenue to fall as a result of this desison, as fewer people will choose to use a service which won't let them go to London for a cheap day out.

It's not just Leisure travellers that use CDRs. People on business use them too and in my experience that is not a small fraction of off-peak travellers. So I would expect a dip in the number of people using the trains for leisure travel, though not as significant as you suggest - the CDRs will still be valid for return after 1901, so people may decide to spend a little longer in London. Then I would also guess there would be a larger number of Open tickets sold for business people and some leisure travellers who would have previously used a CDR. And I would guess that overall FCC will make more money.

People will get annoyed with the restrictions, but I doubt it will stop them travelling as much as you suggest.
 

yorkie

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Richard Armstrong said:
Hi Yorkie.
Would it be possible to get a cheap ticket so I could get from Harpenden to (after 09:30 of course) London and back without paying these stupid fares for the evening peak?
All fares are adult prices, and u16 fares are 50% of the adult fare except where shown:-

Harpenden-London terminals
CDR 9.30
Travelcard off-peak 12.50
SDR 18.80
Travelcard peak 23.80

Combo CDRs
Harpenden-Elstree & Borehamwood
CDR 5.30

Elstree & Borehamwood-London terminals
CDR 5.20
Travelcard off-peak 6.30 (2.00 u16s)

As you can see, a combination of tickets is cheaper than a SDR. The price for you would be £2.65 to Elstree & Borehamwood, and £2.00 for a travelcard from there, total £4.65. Compared to a travelcard from St Albans (not valid) at £6.25. You can look at the saving in one of 2 ways:

You save £1.60 AND get to travel at peak time by using combo CDR + Tcard compared to an off-peak CDR

or

You save £7.25 (or 62%!) compared to a peak ticket, by using combo CDR + Tcard compared to peak travelcard.

You have to get a metro rather than a flyer though.
 

Nick W

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How do we know which ToC sets a fare whre the journey is on more than one ToC?

How do we find restrictions for a particular ticket. The NR site only mentions the restrictions for ticket types in general?
 

Table 52

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Nick W said:
How do we know which ToC sets a fare whre the journey is on more than one ToC?

How do we find restrictions for a particular ticket. The NR site only mentions the restrictions for ticket types in general?

The simple answer to both your questions is get some fares software!

As a rule, the fare is set by the toc on which the majority of the journey is taken (generally an intercity operator for any long distance stuff).

If you really want restriction codes for each journey, you can buy a national fares manual. It ain't cheap. Otherwise you'll have to rely on National Rail.
[EDIT]
Andrew said:
If it's a franchise commitment then surely there should be some procedure in place that penalises them if they do not accomplish it. If there is not, then why bother having any franchise commitments? And if there is, then that's valid reason to challenge them. Is this a franchise commitment in a PR sense, or one that they've actually promised the DfT. If they've promised/negotiated it with the DfT then there's (IMO) much more chance of it happening. If it just 'would be nice' then it's not likely to happen if it costs them more.



It's not just Leisure travellers that use CDRs. People on business use them too and in my experience that is not a small fraction of off-peak travellers. So I would expect a dip in the number of people using the trains for leisure travel, though not as significant as you suggest - the CDRs will still be valid for return after 1901, so people may decide to spend a little longer in London. Then I would also guess there would be a larger number of Open tickets sold for business people and some leisure travellers who would have previously used a CDR. And I would guess that overall FCC will make more money.

People will get annoyed with the restrictions, but I doubt it will stop them travelling as much as you suggest.

I think it's a PR commitment. Or it may be a longer term franchise commitment. Can't see them getting fined whatever.

As for the money issue, I suppose the revenue from additional tickets may make up for the lost CDRs and on reflection, it may encourage more commuters who also use the AM peak trains onto the services as they're likely to get a seat in the afternoon.

Still not happy about it!
 

Julian G

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joea1 said:
Seeing as crude oil isn't going to be around forever and the entire WAGN practice is under wires, that would be extremely wasteful.
Hi joea1, You have a PM ;)

Oh well, then a set of new EMUs? More 350s?
 

yorkie

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joea1 said:
Seeing as crude oil isn't going to be around forever and the entire WAGN practice is under wires, that would be extremely wasteful.
I agree with you, to a point.

But are you saying the Meridians are not going to be round for more than a few years?

I would think they probably won't last more than 10 years (sorry plastic fans ;), but I can't see them outliving HSTs), but that's still another 8 years time, and in that time they are going to be used somewhere, whether it be on MML or elsewhere.

But the awful fuel consumption of those hideously wasteful 9-car DMUs is absolutely shocking and you are quite right to point out their wastefulness.
 

ikar

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WAGN's problem is limited electrification, in peaks NO MORE electric trains can run, so idealy electric suply systems need to be modernised exspecially on the Hertford loop.
 
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