Newcastle to Birmingam

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ronshirt

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Traveling to Birmingham on April 4th and returning April 6th. 1 adult and 1 child. Using family railcard. Would like to use off-peak tickets - very flexible about train times. Via Leeds I think it is about £83: via Carlisle (preferred option) it is about £110.

Any help gratefully received.
 
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island

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Not sure how it's coming to £110 via Carlisle; the off-peak return route ANY PERMITTED is valid via Carlisle £64.80+£18.65 = £83.45 (in fact it'd be valid via Edinburgh and Glasgow as well!)
 

ronshirt

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Not sure how it's coming to £110 via Carlisle; the off-peak return route ANY PERMITTED is valid via Carlisle £64.80+£18.65 = £83.45 (in fact it'd be valid via Edinburgh and Glasgow as well!)
Thank you Island. I don't know how I managed to get the £110 fare now either.

I was told a couple of years ago by one of the staff at the ticket office at Newcastle that via Carlisle was not a valid route. I'm off all week so I am going to take a trip into Newcastle tomorrow and pick some brains.
 

island

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I would suspect you are much more likely to get good advice here than at your average station!
 

Ze Random One

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I cannot see any reason for that. The Routeing Guide lists GN + BS as valid routes. GN is the map for Newcastle - Glasgow via Carlisle, and BS is the map for the WCML (& connecting routes) from Scotland to the West Midlands.
So, by the routeing guide, follow map GN from Newcastle to Carlisle, and map BS from Carlisle to Birmingham (via Preston)
It doesn't cause an anomaly, as a CAR-BHM SVR is cheaper than a NCL-BHM SVR.
Finally, if you ask East Coast's website to buy a SVR (Off Peak Return) from Newcastle to Birmingham, travelling via Carlisle, it will happily sell you a ticket at the same price as the direct journey.

I do think some ticket clerks misunderstand the rules, in particular, although a direct service, or a shorter route may exist (and is automatically permitted), that they are not the only permitted routes, although they may be the most commonly used ones, and believe the rules to be that if a direct or shorter service exists, you must use it.

To be quite honest, it cannot be beyond the wit of ATOC to write a database which will list out the permitted routes for a ticket, which can be given as part of a ticket purchase upon request. I'm not saying they should always do this, but in all honesty, it is part of the contract formed between the passenger and the TOCs, and in the long term it is in the best interest of all parties to have their contracts self-explanatory.
 
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ronshirt

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Just got back from town: at first the (very helpful) young lady in the travel centre told me that the route via Carlisle was invalid but when I said that I had been told that it was valid she offered to go and check. She disappeared backstage for a while and then came back to tell me it was valid.

Thank you for your help.
 
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