Hatfield to Birmingham International - walk up

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jon0844

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I've decided I need to attend an event in Birmingham tomorrow, so too late for any good advance tickets in first on Virgin so I'm going to opt to pay as little as possible instead.

BR Fares suggests a £27.70 fare with my Gold Card, set by Chiltern so I assume I will go Hatfield to Marylebone, to Birmingham, walk to New Street and out to BHI. Time isn't critical as it's an exhibition so I am in no real rush to get there or to leave (another reason not to get advance tickets).

Is that the best deal? The problem is I'm using the GWR app and can't get that fare to appear. It just shows Virgin trains and there's no way to force anything else.

Will I just be able to get it from a TVM at Hatfield tomorrow morning?
 
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island

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Wouldn't you be quicker changing at Leamington Spa onto a CrossCountry to Birmingham International? In fact going all the way to Birmingham Stations might be off route which would be why the app won't show it.
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Cheaper again is going to be separate tickets Hatfield (Herts) to London Terminals (walk to Euston) and London Terminals to Birmingham International super off-peak return route LM ONLY MON-THU, total is £19.90 assuming you're returning the same day, and, since you mention gold card, that you're leaving after 0930. Whether you want to spend serious time on a Desiro and can manage with arriving at Birmingham Intl for 1245 is another matter.
 
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ainsworth74

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Wouldn't you be quicker changing at Leamington Spa onto a CrossCountry to Birmingham International? In fact going all the way to Birmingham Stations might be off route which would be why the app won't show it.

Can you use CrossCountry to Birmingham International? I thought CrossCountry only accepted Gold Card discounts south of Banbury?
 

Paul Kelly

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It's definitely valid but you need to make sure to use London Midland or Arriva Trains Wales for the final leg from Birmingham New Street to International, as the Gold Card won't be valid on Virgin or CrossCountry along that stretch.
 

jon0844

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In the end I opted to splash out and get the LM first class ticket for £33 (standard for GTR to KGX) so I'll get a little more space and a power socket. The journey isn't that much slower than Virgin and I used the money saved for a breakfast at Wetherspoons (just over £4 with coffee!).

Thanks for the advice though. With those super off peak fares, I may have to try and plan a future trip to Brum. I didn't realise some of them are open returns too. Insanely cheap and so much better than advance tickets as I have no idea when I'll get bored and want to come home, or if I end up staying for drinks...!

Edit: signal problems at Watford Junction means tickets are being accepted on Virgin. So that's where I am and will now get to Birmingham an hour earlier almost!

Edit 2: No problem from the TM but given Virgin doesn't accept Gold Cards, should I have been able to use my discounted LM ticket?
 
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