First TransPennine Express - First Class - worth doing?

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by WillPS, 24 Jan 2010.

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  1. WillPS

    WillPS Established Member

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    I'm planning a weekend away with my girlfriend. The trip could cost as little as £20 with Standard Advances or £50 with Fist Advances and Weekend Supplements (which in fairness is still less than the £60ish 2 Standard Off-Peak returns would cost).

    Trying to justify the added expense in my head, does anybody have any experience of 185 (and possibly 170) First Class?
     
  2. 156499

    156499 Member

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    I've done first class in a 185 before, Glasgow - Preston, seats are comfortable, amazing legroom, peace and quiet! and the freebies aren't too bad either, I got a wee basket with Crisps, Biscuits and juice in it, and you get the choice of Tea, Coffee, Hot Choco. I saw yesterday quite a few passengers in first class had sandwhiches so possibly they give them out for free now, definatley worth a try, cracking train, cracking experience :) im doing it on march 6 Glasgow - Manchester First class, going to the ELR diesil gala and night rider :D
     
  3. WillPS

    WillPS Established Member

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    Here's how the costs break down in Standard:
    [​IMG]

    First:
    [​IMG]

    I could save a fiver or so by buying the return leg on Sunday as standard and getting Weekend upgrades. The outward portion would be on a Friday evening, from Sheffield, between 4 and 6 pm, during term time. That is pushing me towards First Class even more.
     
  4. GodAtum

    GodAtum Established Member

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    I went from Manchester Piccadilly - Liverpool Lime Street on a 185 in 1st class. the seating was very comfy and the nice and quiet.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. 142094

    142094 Established Member

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    AFAIK you don't get free sandwiches, only drinks and nibbles. It might be worth it if you want to have better legroom and a quieter carriage, but think that the money saved by going in standard you could go to a nice restaurant, which would certainly please the gf!
     
  6. poshbakerloo

    poshbakerloo Member

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    Its only worth it if the rest of the train is very busy...and most of that time they are!
     
  7. 142094

    142094 Established Member

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    I used to commute on 185s to Leeds, and 1st class did appeal at rush hour. But outside of peak hours and away from major flows, standard class is not that bad. Even if you don't get the free drinks and snacks, you could by them yourself from the trolley and still save a fair bit of money, and have a good meal later on.
     
  8. 323235

    323235 Established Member

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    All I got offered when travelling in FC on TPE was Free Tea/Coffee/Water
    There was never any mention of any Cakes,Hot Chocolate or Nibbles :(
    Is that something you have to ask for to get?
     
  9. 156499

    156499 Member

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    Sometimes its really your luck whats on board, I did Peterborough - Glasgow First class in November, and All I got was tea and Orange juice... oh and lets not forget the one bite and its gone short bread... what an experience HA not!
     
  10. rosscbrown

    rosscbrown Member

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    I used to do Edinburgh > Lockerbie FC twice a week for about two years. Not the best offering and they'd done away with the cute little breakfast boxes too.

    The only reason I go FC is to get a seat. I don't get the chance to book seats/tickets in advance.
     
  11. 156499

    156499 Member

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    so if the snack boxes are gone what are the freebies now?
     
  12. WillPS

    WillPS Established Member

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    I'm mainly driven by the desire to just have things nice and stress free. Spending quite a lot on a UK break because Gem suffers from anxiety - so planes are off the list... I think tbh I've just answered my own question there.

    Think I'll give it a go, and if it's rubbish I'll know not to again.
     
  13. Pumbaa

    Pumbaa Established Member

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    Will - the Sheffield - Man leg will be a 170 more than likely now. Honestly, don't bother. Although so saying that, this way you will be guarunteed a seat. Blackpool North - Preston has no FC service either.
     
  14. Active_Lad

    Active_Lad Member

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    I've travelled on occasions from Grantham to Stockport. The "official" route is with EMT on their Norwich -> Liverpool 2 Car Units that have no catering and no first class. So I route via Doncaster on East Coast and TPE and have always been very impressed with TPE. Not only is it about 25 minutes quicker, despite the wait at Doncaster, but the first class experience on TPE is very good. Carriages are always clean and quiet and are a great boon especially when travelling in the peak when standard is packed. Since I usually work the power points help too. Freebies are fine for a relatively short journey. Never had cause to complain! :D
     
  15. Max

    Max Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    The first class seats on 185s are very comfortable, but I'm not sure they're worth the amount extra you are looking at. They're great on a £6 weekend first upgrade, but £15 more each way? I'm not so sure.
     
  16. WillPS

    WillPS Established Member

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    In the end I found the 'TPESALE' promotion takes 25% off First Class Advance tickets (still allowing Railcard Discount), so got them for £40, which works out as £5 per person each way. I'm fine with that :)

    Norwich - Liverpool now has a trolley between Nottingham and Stockport (again). But yeah it is a poor offering compared to other services...

    I definitely see far more 185s through Sheffield than 170s. Either way, I don't mind Turbostars and I've got First Class seats reserved now though... so sod it :) If I see a First Class service just once on both journeys I'll be happy!
     
  17. MCR247

    MCR247 Established Member

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    What do they do take the FC 185 seats out at Preston? :lol:
     
  18. transportphoto

    transportphoto Established Member Quizmaster

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    lol - can't see that happening. Unless they close 1st Class and keep it as a unofficial staff rest zone!!!
     
  19. voyagerdude220

    voyagerdude220 Established Member

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    Please tell me this isn't the case...

    I've known about the 170s working some Man to Cleethorpes services vice 185, to shift more 185s onto the Scottish services, but i've always been under the impression that it's only 2 or 3 departures max on the route?

    I "started out" riding 185s from Manchester Picc to Cleethorpes [in First Class] and have always found it to be a highly pleasurable ride in FC. Although the complimentaries aren't the best, they're definately satisfactory, although i'm not happy with the axing of trolleys at Cleethorpes..

    I'd never pay alot more for TPE FC, but when it's available for a reasonable amount more, i'd be very happy to pay it.
     
  20. Solent&Wessex

    Solent&Wessex Established Member

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    There are now additional 170s operating on the South Route.

    There are 2 daytime diagrams Monday to Thursday which operate separately. I.e. 2 x 170s running around on their own. The night trains are virtually exclusively 170s now.

    There are no 170s on the South Route on a Friday.

    On Saturdays there is 1 diagram for 2 units - i.e. a 4 car 170 running around all day. It starts at Manchester Airport at 0515.

    As someone who works on them, the 170 First Class, although smaller, is far comfier, quieter and warmer than a 185. The seats especially on ours are very comfy.

    Class 185 First Class is quite good for a DMU, however, it can often be very cold in there as the only heating in the 185 First Class compartment comes from the floor radiators. These radiators only work if both the 51 & 53 (First Class DMCL and MSL) engines are on. If either of these engines is out for whatever reason, there is no heating in First Class and as result will often resemble a mobile ice box.

    If travelling at a weekend it is often cheaper to buy a Standard Class ticket and upgrade by buying weekend first for £6.
     
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