Glasgow-London return every weekend

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by Sammi22, 10 Nov 2011.

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  1. Sammi22

    Sammi22 Member

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    Hi guys, this is my first post on here.

    Here's my situation... I travel from Glasgow to London just about every weekend, as my boyfriend lives in London now and I'm ridiculously bad at long-distance relationships.

    I need to leave Glasgow on the Friday at around 3-4pm as this is generally when I finish uni (will consider going earlier and missing uni if it makes a huge price difference). I need to arrive in London before midnight as I then need to get the tube from central London out to Clapham.

    I then need to be back in Glasgow for 9am on a Monday morning.

    I've been doing this since August and so far the cheapest is obviously the Megabus both ways but I've had several bad experiences with the passengers on Megabuses so I'm keen to keep it trains/planes!

    I'm just looking to see if anyone has tips to make this journey as cheap as possible, I'm aware of booking in advance/split ticketing but just to see if I'm missing anything :P

    So far the cheapest train-both-ways I've got was £45.20 splitting at Crewe going down and getting the Caledonian Sleeper back up. Booked well in advance. Can anyone beat this price?

    I've got a young person's railcard also :)
     
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  3. AlterEgo

    AlterEgo Veteran Member

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    Have you considered the Megabus Sleeper Bus, at least on the return leg? That'll get you into Glasgow by 9am. No regular train from London will arrive into Glasgow that early. Virgin have an 0539 off Euston that'll get you into Glasgow at 1036.
     
  4. jamesontheroad

    jamesontheroad Established Member

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    --oops-- mis-read the OP - you've already snagged the sleeper. Best fare is about £35 each way with a 16-25 Railcard, normally available for Friday and Sunday nights if you are quick when they open for sale on Friday morning 12 weeks in advance.
     
  5. Sammi22

    Sammi22 Member

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    Problem with the 05:39 from Euston is that I can't (easily) get from Clapham to Euston that early as the tube doesn't open until 5:30 or something.

    Why is there no trains between that 05:39 and the 07:30? I will have 12pm starts after Xmas and the 07:30 gets into Glasgow a little too late. Need a train between 6am and 7am!
     
  6. AlterEgo

    AlterEgo Veteran Member

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    Because there aren't...or more properly because there isn't the demand for another train so early. The 0539 is very lightly loaded until about Preston in my experience. Plenty of dirt cheap Advances too.
     
  7. stut

    stut Established Member

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    Although it'd be far too early for me... The 88 bus runs all night, and goes to Euston Road at Warren St, about 5-10 minutes walk from Euston. The 04:32 bus would get you there in plenty time.
     
  8. tony_mac

    tony_mac Established Member

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    Is the 'Virgin Traveller' scheme still running?
     
  9. AlterEgo

    AlterEgo Veteran Member

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    It certainly is...
     
  10. cuccir

    cuccir Established Member

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    Easyjet fly from Gatwick Airport to Glasgow at 07:35, arriving at 09:05. It tends to be priced at £25-30, and a single from Clapham Junction to Gatwick is £9.20.

    Presuming that you can leave some things at your boyfriend's in London ie you won't need to book any hold luggage, then it's an OK option - costs more than the train, but not loads more, and you'd probably look to get the 05:08 from Clapham Junction.
     
  11. tony_mac

    tony_mac Established Member

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    It seems a little unclear on their website if it will continue beyond March.

    http://www.virgintrains.co.uk/traveller

    For Sammi22 - this would involve spending at least £800 over 3 months on 1st-class tickets. But it would then give you a free 1st class ticket every weekend - (Friday to Monday morning) for the rest of the membership (normally 1 year, but it's confused at the moment due to the franchise ending).

    The terms do state that they can withdraw this benefit if they want to, but it's been running for some time now.
     
  12. EltonRoad

    EltonRoad Established Member

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    Another way to save money would be to get him to visit you every so often. ;)
     
  13. 34D

    34D Established Member

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    Would the 06:15 kings cross-edinburgh help you get to glasgow for 12 noon? You need a job in the rail industry!
     
  14. Peter Mugridge

    Peter Mugridge Established Member

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    The 06.15 terminates at Newcastle at 09.42; the first through service is the 07.00 ( which is 09.51 at Newcastle and 11.25 at Edinburgh ).
     
  15. 34D

    34D Established Member

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    That's a change for the worse then - my apologies for not checking. Guess that changed with Eureka (old 1S04 not 1N04).

    Returning to the ladies dilemma, could not the boyfriend be urged to move from Clapham to Watford or MK?
     
  16. RJ

    RJ Established Member

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    I commute 150 miles every weekend to visit a friend...I pay £3.60 for an Anytime Open Return to the nearest station where my employing TOC serve, then it's free for the rest of the way! I only work two days a week, part time work in the railway industry is the way forward for students!
     
  17. swadbus

    swadbus Member

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    In this day and age it needn't be a ladies dilemma... This is the 21st century you know! :roll:
     
    Last edited: 15 Nov 2011
  18. neodoughnut

    neodoughnut Member

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    For the return leg, You can also catch the 05:03 Clapham Junction to Watford Junction arr. 05:40 and catch the 05:39 Euston - Glasgow train at 6:02.
     
    Last edited: 16 Nov 2011
  19. telstarbox

    telstarbox Established Member

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    Or why not have a fun weekend in Birmingham / Manchester every so often and meet each other half way - plenty to do in both.
     
  20. AlterEgo

    AlterEgo Veteran Member

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    No such thing! :)
     
  21. Sammi22

    Sammi22 Member

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    Ooh! This is definitely an option I hadn't explored! Thank you! Clapham Junction is only a 15sh minute walk so saves me getting two night buses. I've already got a ticket for the 05:39 from Euston one weekend in January, I assume it'll be okay to jump on at Watford Junction?

    05:03 from Clapham to Watford is £7.90 and Watford to Glasgow is £12.20 so it's still pretty cheap too. (Although how come it's the same price from Euston or Watford? Surely from Watford should be at least a teeny bit cheaper!)

    Also, in response to the suggestions that he come up/meet in the middle... He does come up as often as he can but he works late so can't stick to bookings where as I'm at uni and not opposed to missing a few Friday afternoon lectures :P

    And flying is an option, but I'm keen for this early train as it's usually SO cheap!

    Have booked all my journeys up to xmas now... One sleeper train at £24.20 and two megabuses at £12 :( Cannot WAIT for 12pm starts.

    And yes. I most definitely need to get a job with the rail. Can you still get a free travel card if a family member works for the rail? I remember having a friend in school who's Dad worked for the rail and he got free travel. Could maybe persuade my parents into a career change? :P
     
  22. dvboy

    dvboy Established Member

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  23. tony_mac

    tony_mac Established Member

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    You might find this hard to understand - but the official answer is 'no', and it could cost you £150 if you did.
     
  24. RJ

    RJ Established Member

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    Dependants and spouses can get a Priv - a mate in my halls has a dependant Priv as his dad works on the ferries. If you want *free* travel, they'd have to have be safeguarded, meaning they would have had to commence service on the railways before the 1st April 1996. If you want one, you'll have to take up a job with one of the few (not necessarily TOC) organisations that still offers them! Otherwise it's the only the standard Priv which is near useless for long distance travel, unless you're into working the system to reduce the fare. Perhaps you should keep an eye on the Virgin Trains website, they occasionally advertise for part time work, you'll get a Priv and free travel from Glasgow to London if you get a permanent contract.
     
  25. MikeWh

    MikeWh Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    Book an advance all the way from Clapham Junction to Glasgow Central leaving on the 0503 in January and it's £13.85 with 16-25 railcard. The ticket is Virgin WC + Connections.
     
  26. LexyBoy

    LexyBoy Established Member Fares Advisor

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    Unfortunately this is correct - Advance tickets are not valid for break of journey which includes starting or finishing "short" of the stations shown. Whilst it is possible to change the time of a booking, it is not possible to change the stations. (However, see below*).

    Whilst I'd think the chances of "getting away with it" are high since there's unlikely to be a ticket check before Watford, and in any case most guards would be understanding that travel is difficult at that time in the morning, it's not worth the risk since the penalty is so large.

    In future buy the ticket MikeWh suggests - it's a change at Watford and cheaper than separate tickets. Additionally, if you're delayed on the bus to Euston and miss your train, Virgin are under no obligation to take you on a later train. If you buy a ticket from Clapham Junction (or a seperate train ticket from CJ to Watford) then they do.

    * It has been argued that this would be allowed as you are allowed to combine journeys so long as your tickets cover the whole journey, and the train stops at the station you change from one to the other. This is distinct from breaking your journey as you are not starting or ending your journey from Watford. Personally I wouldn't want to argue over this, especially when getting to Euston would only be an inconvenience rather than an impossibility.
     
  27. bluenoxid

    bluenoxid Established Member

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    I take my hat off to you. I never thought of doing it that way. :D
     
  28. Sammi22

    Sammi22 Member

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    Thanks for this, didn't know you could use Oyster for this! It might be cheaper than £2.50 as my young person's railcard is attached to my Oyster. Anyway, it's not much of a difference pricing up for 23rd January...

    Oyster (£2.50) Clapham to Watford + Watford to Glasgow (£12.20) = £14.70
    Through ticket Clapham to Glasgow = £13.85

    This is a ridiculous idea! Imagine charging someone £150 for NOT being on the train from London-Watford despite the fact they've paid for it... Crazy, but like you said I won't risk it!
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    Also, on another note...

    Going to London this afternoon, booked the 16:00 from Glasgow to Crewe (arriving at 18:58) and the 19:56 from Crewe to London...

    Chances of me getting on the 19:21/19:27 train to London instead of waiting for the 19:56??
     
  29. cuccir

    cuccir Established Member

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    What sort of ticket do you have? If it is an Advance ticket (it will say 'Ticket Type Advance' in the top left hand corner, and have 'only valid with reservations' on the top) then your ticket is only valid on the 19:56. Don't rely on asking staff at the station if it's OK to travel early - discretion really only lies with the guard on the later train. If you really want to get the earlier train, you could ask the guard as she or he gets off the train at Crewe when it pulls into the station - she or he may let you travel, but they may decide not to. Don't get on without asking them!

    If, one the other, hand you have any sort of Off-Peak or Anytime ticket, return or single, then you'll be able to travel on the earlier trains.
     
  30. Sammi22

    Sammi22 Member

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    It's an advance. Will ask the guard. Not awfully excited about spending an hour in Crewe station!
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    Got away with getting the earlier train to London from Crewe. Couldn't find a guard but no one checked tickets so got away with it :)

    Also on another note, got the Caledonian sleeper back up to Glasgow on Sunday night and it was sooooo cold I couldnt stop shivering, never mind sleep! Not amused.
     
  31. island

    island Established Member

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    [pedant]You got it down to Glasgow, I suspect.[/pedant]
     
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