No more DB for staff travel ?

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mikestone1952

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12 Feb 2011
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The Stuttgart leg I have purchased from DB on 08718808066 at £11.34, obviously a conversion from Euro.s, and no postage charge, as before.
The "DB" tickets arrived this morning - from International Rail with a return address in Alresford but shown issued in Ropley. The covering letter had a Surbiton address.
It would appear DB have done a better deal for rail staff than ATOC did.
 
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onemanonline

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14 Jul 2013
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The "DB" tickets arrived this morning - from International Rail with a return address in Alresford but shown issued in Ropley. The covering letter had a Surbiton address.
It would appear DB have done a better deal for rail staff than ATOC did.
Good to hear that DB are still on the go in the UK. The MYRST euro exchange rate was poor for my last purchase just above 1.1 euro to 1 pound.
 

Blinder

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15 Aug 2014
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The "DB" tickets arrived this morning - from International Rail with a return address in Alresford but shown issued in Ropley. The covering letter had a Surbiton address.
It would appear DB have done a better deal for rail staff than ATOC did.
International Rail are based in Ropley, but the postal address is Ropley, Alresford, Hampshire.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Good to hear that DB are still on the go in the UK. The MYRST euro exchange rate was poor for my last purchase just above 1.1 euro to 1 pound.
DB do still have an office in Surbiton, but they do not issue tickets.
 

davetheguard

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10 Apr 2013
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"International Rail" have now had a long time to sort out issues about booking FIP tickets & reservations. Things have certainly gone very quiet on here about the problems experienced when they were first awarded the contract.

Has anyone had recent experience -good as well as bad- of using "International Rail" to supply tickets?

I'm looking to order some tickets for Eurostar & TGV travel soon; people's experiences will help me decide who to order them from.
 

ge-gn

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5 Dec 2014
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"International Rail" have now had a long time to sort out issues about booking FIP tickets & reservations. Things have certainly gone very quiet on here about the problems experienced when they were first awarded the contract.

Has anyone had recent experience -good as well as bad- of using "International Rail" to supply tickets?

I'm looking to order some tickets for Eurostar & TGV travel soon; people's experiences will help me decide who to order them from.
Booked some travel recently from the Hook of Holland to Ratingen in Germany. Other than the surly nature of fellow on the end of the phone, my application for travel was dealt with quickly and efficiently, and correctly.
 

TheEdge

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29 Nov 2012
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Norwich
"International Rail" have now had a long time to sort out issues about booking FIP tickets & reservations. Things have certainly gone very quiet on here about the problems experienced when they were first awarded the contract.

Has anyone had recent experience -good as well as bad- of using "International Rail" to supply tickets?

I'm looking to order some tickets for Eurostar & TGV travel soon; people's experiences will help me decide who to order them from.
I recently had a few.

Phoned them to book Eurostar. This was during the short period a few months ago where it was cheaper to buy direct at St Pancras than via IR. I had no idea, they told me, they lost the sale but saved me cash.

I also booked a berth on NightJet sleeper through them and they knew their stuff. I shopped around, tried Voyages-SNCF who told me I couldn't buy a single berth with a standard FIP. Phoned IR who told me "thats rubbish, yes you can, it'll be €100 and something". Bought it off them, ticket arrived the next morning, barely 12 hours later.

Would recommend them.
 

TheEscapist_

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18 Nov 2011
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Never had a problem with IR. Last year they helped me with my trip a lot, think the guy helping me was German and he was very knowledgeable.


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Blinder

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15 Aug 2014
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I asked IR for 3 berths in a 4-berth SNCF compartment, explaing that I had 2nd Class free coupons. They insisted that I could do that, despite being told by Rail Canterbury that I couldnt. I should of listened to Canterbury. 4-berth SNCF Couchettes are 1st Class, so you need a 1st Class ticket/coupon.

SNCF conductor excessed me up to 1st class 300+ euros, not pleased, so bill to IR and complaint to ATOC.
 

Slipshave

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19 Jun 2017
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Hi Blinder, just thinking back to the first time I travelled on a sleeper in Europe. I travelled from Berlin to Amsterdam, 1st class couchette with a 2nd class fip and only had to pay a small upgrade fee. Free travel isn't provided but you should still get the full 75% discount off or the first class price. As I remember anyway. Let me know how you get on.
 
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reb0118

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AFAIAA you do not get 75% discount on 1st class fares with a 2nd class FIP card. Nor do you get a discount on the upgrade.

However, you are entitled to upgrade by paying the FULL public rate difference in fares between 2nd & 1st. Again, however, this may or may not be available on the train.

We were also given 1st class 4 berth couchettes on a French overnight train with 2nd class FIP coupons (issued by DB as seemingly on DB night trains a 2nd ticket is fine in either 4 or 6 berth couchettes). We got no hassle as the ticket check was done on the platform prior to boarding and all they wanted to see was the reservations. We were lucky.

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Mag_seven

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Is there any other outlet other than International Rail Ltd that can handle FIP bookings? Can it be done face to face anywhere e.g. Eurostar booking office at St Pancras?
 

jc99

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29 Feb 2016
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Is there any other outlet other than International Rail Ltd that can handle FIP bookings? Can it be done face to face anywhere e.g. Eurostar booking office at St Pancras?
Very belated reply...

Yes, you can can do face to face bookings at St Pancras, and personally I go there whenever possible to avoid booking fees.

As an alternative to International Rail, I recommend Rail Canterbury. I've had issues with IR when trying to book Eurostar. The good thing with RC is they do the booking there and then while you're on the phone, unlike IR who simply note your request and promise to ring you back. Also RC can do bookings for safeguarded staff, unlike IR.
 

158801

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26 Sep 2011
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International Rail can do safeguarded Eurostar fares. I do them regularly for myself.

I’ve had a few bad experiences from Rail Canterbury and Would NOT recommend them. The last time I used RC was a some FIP tickets. The tickets arrived and made no mention of FIP on them. I queried this and was told that they had a new system which didn’t print this on. The publicy available walk up fare was cheaper than RC charged me.

I booked the same journey with International Rail a year later and the fare was cheaper than RAil Canterbury and, of course, the tickets showed FIP discount.

So Rail Canterbury blatantly lied to me to cover their mistake and cost me about £50 in the process.

Rail Canterbury charge a 10% or £10 booking fee - whichever is the most.
International Rail charge a flat £10 fee. I’ve always emailed International Rail with my request. If I email in the morning they always reply the same day with a quote and then it’s a simple case of phoning them up to pay. Unlike RC, they once made a mistake and overcharged me. They contacted me (pro-actively) to get me to send the tickets back to get them changed over.

I’m not sure what system Rail Canterbury use but when booking with International Rail for Eurostar you can obtain print at home tickets. Using the Eurostar booking reference you can go to Eurostar’s website and change you seat if you don’t like the one that you’re given.

Ffestiniog travel are also a favourite of mine. Any profits go to the Ffestiniog railway. They charge a 9% booking fee. They’ve always been helpful.

I would never, ever contact Rail Canterbury. I was in Canterbury last year and it was with must disgust and disdain that I walked by their shop - a pokey little place with just one member of staff in.

Two examples.
1 person single from London to Marseille via Paris
Rail Canterbury £23.00 + £1.50 + booking fee = £34.50
Ffestiniog Travel £23.00 + £1.50 + booking fee = £26.90
International Rail £23.00 + £1.50 + booking fee = £34.50

2 people London to Barcelona single via Paris
Rail Canterbury £46.00 + £180 + booking fee = £248
Ffestiniog travel £46 + £180 + booking fee = £246.34
International Rail £46 + £180 + booking fee =£236.00

The fares above are based upon a safeguarded member of staff travelling on Eurostar to Paris and using a FIP fare (no international coupons allowed) from Paris to Barcelona (yes I know you can cheaper by sometimes rebooking at Perpignan).
 

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