Negative easement - Now inconsistencies in ticket prices

Status
Not open for further replies.

eastend43

Member
Joined
31 Jul 2012
Messages
46
Location
Birkenhead
Hi

I'm new to this, so apologies if this has been asked before. And forgive me for not going into too much detail, for obvious reasons.

I recently noticed a negative easement that affects my local station (Station A), which is very close to a large station (Station B). To get to another large station about 50 miles away (Station C) it is usually quicker to go via B and get the fast train (on a separate line) to C. But the recent negative easement now states that A to C via B is not a permitted route.

My local station is unstaffed and when I get on a train from A to B I have always been able to buy the cheapest ticket for the journey from A to C. When there hasn't been the opportunity to buy a ticket on the train from A to B, I have always been able to buy the cheapest ticket from A to C at the platform ticket office at Station B. When I go on the www.eastcoast.co.uk website to buy a ticket from A to C it often routes me via B (as it is the quickest) and gives it to me at the lowest price.

The trainline website (and the website of the TOC which covers these stations) only offers the direct but slower journeys from A to C (at the lowest price) and the network rail website offers the direct journeys at the lower price, or journeys via B at a higher price (£1.20 more) and states that you would have to buy multiple tickets to go that route.

My first question is, how are people meant to know that travel between A and C via B is not a valid route anymore, particularly since up until a few years ago, you had to go via B as there wasn't a direct link from A to C? I only found the easement by chance after stumbling across this website at the weekend and following links to the Routeing guide and then (since I was on a train at the time) was bored enough to look at the easements. My experience is that the on train staff and ticket office staff don't know about it either.

My second question is, what would happen if I had bought the cheapest ticket from A to C from eastcoast.co.uk, followed their suggested route via B and then bumped into either a RPI or a ticket examiner who knew about the negative easement? Would I get done for not having a valid ticket (I am not in a penalty fare area) and would showing them the print out of the suggested route help me avoid that?

Similarly what would happen if I had got on the train from A to B, said I was going to C (which I would think would obviously be via B) and was sold the cheapest ticket from A to C and then on my journey from B to C I bump into a RPI or more knowledgeable ticket examiner?

In other words, could I get penalised for someone selling me the wrong ticket (even though I have clearly stated my final destination and my route was obvious), or get penalised for following the route / times given to me by www.eastcoast.co.uk when buying a ticket online.

I only make that journey once a month or so, but the same issue probably occurs for season ticket holders.
 
Sponsor Post - registered members do not see these adverts; click here to register, or click here to log in
R

RailUK Forums

34D

Established Member
Joined
9 Feb 2011
Messages
6,033
Location
Yorkshire
My second question is, what would happen if I had bought the cheapest ticket from A to C from eastcoast.co.uk, followed their suggested route via B and then bumped into either a RPI or a ticket examiner who knew about the negative easement? Would I get done for not having a valid ticket (I am not in a penalty fare area) and would showing them the print out of the suggested route help me avoid that?

If there were two fares, for example a cheaper 'route direct' fare and then a more expensive 'route any permitted' fare, the only risk on meeting a knowledgable RPI would be an excess (ie the difference from one ticket to the other).

If there is no fare for the journey via B, I am unsure how this would be treated, example whether the inspector would work out the sum of the two fares (and work out the difference between that and what was purchased) or whether he would be entitled to treat you as having no valid ticket (I would hope he would lean to the former).

I would expect many staff would deem it reasonable, and/or not give the ticket sufficient visual attention in order to form a view.
 

bb21

Forum Staff
Staff Member
Global Moderator
Joined
4 Feb 2010
Messages
23,912
In the case of deviation from the permitted route, you will be charged a new ticket(s) from the last station your original ticket is valid.
 

WelshBluebird

Established Member
Joined
14 Jan 2010
Messages
3,752
Surely if you are sold a ticket as being valid on that route, then regardless of what the easements say, that ticket has to be accepted as being valid? As you were sold it. Otherwise it surely would be a breach consumer protection laws?
 

DaveNewcastle

Established Member
Fares Advisor
Joined
21 Dec 2007
Messages
7,387
Location
Newcastle (unless I'm out)
Surely if you are sold a ticket as being valid on that route, then regardless of what the easements say, that ticket has to be accepted as being valid? As you were sold it. Otherwise it surely would be a breach consumer protection laws?
If I've understood all the details correctly (and maybe I have not), then I would be confident in pursuing a simple Breach of Contract against the TOC which is the carrier.

It really should be that simple, but be prepared for the slim chance of argument over the different liabilities of the carrier and the seller (which I understand are 2 different TOCs); we couldn't be sure that the 2 TOCs would agree to allow responsibilities to a passenger to be transferred between them in the case of an error, if that was to be a line of Defence, in which case there would be debate about the arcane details of the Ticketing Settlement Agreement and whether this has bearing on the passenger's Contract.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Top