Oyster or paper day travelcard?

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by crehld, 27 Apr 2015.

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  1. crehld

    crehld Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    Hello. I will have a couple of hours spare in London on Wednesday and would like to get a little more London coverage in. As a minimum the journey should go as follows (all national rail unless otherwise stated):

    Kings Cross -> Finsbury Park
    Finsbury Park -> Moorgate
    Moorgate -> Elephant and Castle (LU Northern line)
    Elephant and Castle -> St Pancras

    The question is would I be better of using my Oyster card or purchasing a paper off-peak day travelcard? With capping Oyster should be cheaper, but I've heard Oyster does some funny things when you have lots of journeys in a row.

    Will be travelling after 10:00, have a 16-25 railcard, and obviously an Oyster card with said railcard loaded onto it.
     
  2. MikeWh

    MikeWh Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    Oyster with railcard will cap at £4.25 off-peak. Travelcard will cost £7.90. If you use Oyster, make sure you touch out and in again at Finsbury Park NR. For safety you should do the 'hokey-cokey' at Elephant NR, ie touch in, out and in again but note that this must be at a gateline, not validators. That way you will avoid it being one journey from Kings Cross to St Pancras which has no fares listed and will likely end up with two incomplete journeys.
     
  3. John @ home

    John @ home Established Member Fares Advisor

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    I would tackle this differently. I'd touch in at Kings Cross National Rail, not touch in or out at Finsbury Park (unless additional barriers have been added since I last visited that station making touch out+in unavoidable) then touch out and leave the station at Moorgate. I would expect this to be charged as a National Rail only Z1-2 journey.

    A minute or two later, I would touch in at Moorgate, touch out (once) at Elephant Underground, walk through the shopping centre (taking no more than 15 minutes), touch in at Elephant National Rail and out at St Pancras National Rail. I would expect this to be charged as a mixed mode Z1 journey.
     
  4. MikeWh

    MikeWh Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    This journey has no fares in the database. It might be charged correctly, but it's not a journey anyone would normally make.
    Actually it's likely to be a TfL zone 1 journey as Thameslink core is charged at TfL rates.

    Interestingly, Finsbury Park to St Pancras is defined (in readiness for the expanded Thameslink service?) so if it was likely to be done in 100 minutes then it would be safe. So I agree that there should be no need to do the 'hokey-cokey' at Elephant, but I would touch out and in again at Finsbury Park. Total cost should be £3 as two TfL zone 1-2 journeys with railcard.
     
  5. PermitToTravel

    PermitToTravel Established Member

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    I doubt that a max fare (or two) would be charged if a journey for which there are no defined fares is made. I think this requires further experimentation, to be honest.
     
  6. crehld

    crehld Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    Thanks for all the advice. Thought it might be more complicated than it seemed! I'll happily experiment with John @ home's suggestion and post the results in due course!
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    So I followed John @ home's advice precisely. I started with £21.20 on my Oyster card, and how have £18.20 remaining, so a total of £3 deducted, meaning MikeWh's prediction was correct. I will post full journey details when they appear in my journey history. In the meantime, thanks for the top notch advice! :)
     
  7. crehld

    crehld Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    As promised journey history and charging details attached. This confirms I was charged 2x £1.50. A couple of points I thought it might be worth drawing attention too.

    There were barriers in place at Finsbury Park. They were at the top of the stairs on the platform. These weren't in operation, but had they been I wouldn't have been able to change platforms without touching out.

    - I had some trouble touching back in at Moorgate. Basically I tried a couple times and it kept coming up "seek assistance". After seeking assistance from a very helpful TfL man and together trying a couple of other gates it eventually worked. So I'm unsure if this was because of the journey I was making or a dodgy set of oyster readers.

    - I was RPIed twice. Once on the service between Finsbury Park and Moorgate and once between Elephant and St Pancras. Oyster was scanned and passed the test both times.
     

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  8. PermitToTravel

    PermitToTravel Established Member

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    There'll be a code displayed, either on the display facing you or a 2-digit alarm clock-style display on the left of that one. If it starts with 7 it's likely a reader problem (and if it starts with 9 it's likely a problem with you standing in the wrong place). At any rate the fact that the issue was resolved by going to another gate very strongly suggests that it was one of those two.
    What a brilliant verb!
     
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