Rail Delivery Group removing jargon from tickets

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by Skymonster, 10 Aug 2018.

  1. Skymonster

    Skymonster Member

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    Press release from RDG:

    http://www.raildeliverygroup.com/media-centre/press-releases/2018/469774290-2018-08-10.html
    Among other things, it suggests changes that are being made in September including:
    • Removing the words 'Any Permitted' or 'Route Direct' from tickets
    • Replacing 'London Terminals' and instead specifying a London station (in many cases)
    • Adding major station(s) a ticket allows travel through / via
    Is this really ticket simplification or is it the portent of removing flexibility for informed travellers?
    Will the specification of via points start a gradual erosion of rights to chose routings specified in the Routing Guide?
    Is RDG preempting the outcome of the ticketing consultation that runs until September?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 10 Aug 2018
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  3. SickyNicky

    SickyNicky Verified Rep - TrainSplit.com

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    I agree that "Any Permitted" and "Route Direct" is confusing to the average passenger, and that there is scope for improving the situation here, but I do fear the erosion of Permitted Routes.

    Take their example - Station XX to London Terminals route "Any Permitted" being switched to Station XX to London Paddington, unrouted. Surprisingly there aren't that many tickets that could only end at Paddington - really only very short distance ones. Anything longer would probably be valid to Waterloo or Marylebone (depending on the origin).

    It's true that most people will want to go to Paddington, yes, but if there's disruption or someone simply wants to go a different route it's not good news.

    However, I don't have an answer. Maybe others do?
     
  4. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    It's about removing rights, for sure.

    I'll add some examples to this post shortly.
     
  5. soil

    soil Established Member

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    There is a consultation

    https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/EasierFaresConsultation

    "Fares designed so that it is unnecessary to buy a ‘split-ticket’ in order to get the cheapest deal. At present, there are occasions when it is cheaper, when making a journey from A to C, to buy two or more separate tickets e.g. two tickets (A-B and B-C) may be cheaper than one ticket (A-C).

    [​IMG]

    If this were changed those who currently buy split tickets may pay a little more whereas those who currently buy through tickets may pay a little less."

    A 'little more' is obviously a blatant lie, as in the example of £30 + £30 and £100, the median fare would be £80, which is not 'a little', and moreover it is hard to see how you could eliminate split ticketing without having punitive regulations based on the start and end of a journey, as some fares are presumably always going to be much cheaper due to regional subsidies etc. And it doesn't seem likely that they would drastically cut fares on fat cat high-priced lines.

    Clearly the solution is to reduce the cost of the through tickets such that the split tickets are no longer so compelling, however this does not seem likely.
     
  6. CyrusWuff

    CyrusWuff Established Member

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    London to Birmingham, Oxford and the North West is a good place to start. Also London to Basingstoke and beyond along the South West Main Line.
     
  7. akm

    akm Member

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    It doesn't say they're going to limit existing X to London Terminals to a single London terminus. It says

    It's already the case that a Maidenhead to London Terminals ticket can't get to any London terminus apart from Paddington, so what's the harm in making the ticket say so?
     
  8. najaB

    najaB Veteran Member

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    Replacing 'London Terminals' with named stations is a huge change. I don't have to do it any more, but I quite frequently had to travel from Dundee to Brentwood. It was normally most convenient to travel down the ECML and back up the WCML with a Dundee-London Terminals Off-Peak Return and Oyster to/from Brentwood. This wouldn't be possible with named terminals - I'd either have to take the longer journey time down the WCML or pay a significant premium to travel back up the ECML in the evening peak.

    I hope not.
     
    Last edited: 10 Aug 2018
  9. Skymonster

    Skymonster Member

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    Split ticketing is indeed another issue which is addressed in the still ongoing survey. And in some respects I did wonder whether the most recent announcement from RDG rather preempts some possible outcomes from the survey.

    However, I am concerned about this latest announcement - the removal of 'Any permitted' and 'London terminals' and the increased specification of via points on tickets - and the implications that could have on travel flexibility. This new development seems like the ideal opportunity for RDG to slowly and quietly start removing routing options that are permitted at present.
     
  10. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    Yes, this is what it boils down two. Pretend to 'simplify' by adding more restrictions. A favourite ploy of ATOC.
     
  11. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    It really rather depends on what station they choose in many cases. For instance, putting route Nuneaton on Euston-Manchester tickets would be seriously irritating, whereas putting route Milton Keynes Ctl would be much less so, and putting Stockport would just be pig headed.

    (Yes, I know both remove the Chiltern option, it's just an example)
     
  12. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

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    I agree in that case it works, but what about Woking to London Terminals? It's valid to Vauxhall, Victoria, Waterloo, London Bridge and Charing Cross.
    So what do they replace 'any permitted' with? How will a Ticket Examiner/RPI etc know if it's valid?
    What about journeys like Nottingham - Kiveton, where there are 2 valid routes?
     
  13. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Any Permitted doesn't necessarily need replacing with anything - just leave it blank.

    Anyone reckon they will try to put London Euston on WCML tickets, some of which can presently be used to Marylebone or St Pancras? This I think would also prevent excessing to the other route.
     
  14. soil

    soil Established Member

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    A summary of their examples:

    • Boston to Skegness - 'any permitted' becomes <blank>: these are five stations apart on the end of a branch line.
    • Morpeth to Durham - 'any permitted' becomes <blank>: again, just a few stations apart with one possible route
    • Maidenhead to London Terminals - becomes Maidenhead to London Paddington
    • Basildon to London Terminals stays Basildon to London Terminals but adds 'check website' to find out which one
    • Norwich to Sheffield - 'any permitted' becomes 'check website'
    • Manchester to Head Green 'route direct' becomes <blank> - these are adjacent stations, however the current tickets are in any case routed 'any permitted'
    • Inverkeithing to Glenagles 'route direct'becomes 'via Kirkcaldy' - again, this is already routed 'via Kirkcaldy'. Note that: (a) there is no walk-up ticket routed via Haymarket, which may be the fastest route. (b) the obvious route of Inverkeithing - Dundee - Gleneagles is NOT permitted on a 'via Kirkcaldy' ticket, even though it goes, er, via Kirkcaldy. NRE offers today 16:57 via Perth arriving 18:28, 17:03 arr. 18:35 via haymarket 17:20 arr 19:25 via Haymarket (though they suggest changing at Edinburgh, for reasons that aren't obvious to me) 18:05 arr. 19:57 via Haymarket then 19:01 via Perth arr. 20:25. So there is a two hour gap in between trains for which they would sell you a ticket.

    So basically where there is only one permitted route, they remove 'any permitted' and 'route direct', and where there is only one permitted terminal (rare I think?) they change to that one terminal.

    And rather than say 'route direct' they say 'via x'. Which they can do anyway.

    I'm not really sure it achieves much simplification though.

    For example, if you are buying a ticket Woking - Hampton, then you have a choice of:

    £8.90 'not via Clapham J' anytime day single
    £9.50 'Clapham J not Ldn' anytime day single
    £10 'not via Clapham J' super off peak day return
    £11.70 'Clapham J not Ldn' super off peak day return
    £12.60 'not via Clapham J' off peak day return
    £14.80 'Clapham J not Ldn' off peak day return
    £15.20 'London not Und' anytime day single
    £16 'London not Und' super off peak day return
    £16 'not via Clapham J' anytime day return
    £18.20 'Clapham J Not Ldn' anytime day return
    £19.30 superoffpeak day travelcard
    £20.40 'London Not Und' offpeak day return
    £24.10 off-peak day travelcard
    £28 'London not Und' anytime day return
    £30.50 anytime day travelcard

    Not to mention

    Woking - BZ6
    £6.80 anytime day single
    £7.80 super offpeak day return
    £9.90 offpeak day return
    £12.10 anytime day return

    plus t/c
    £12.70 off-peak day
    £18.10 anytime day

    and other undocumented possibilities, such as split ticketing and Oyster and what not.

    The choices are brutally consumer-hostile, as you might not even know which train you are going to catch when standing in front of the machine at Woking, let alone on your return journey hours later (oh, trains to Woking don't call at Clapham Junction for several hours during the peak? Nice.), and then if you buy the 'Clapham J Not Ldn' super off peak ticket you can't use it in the evening peak, but if you buy the 'Not Via Clapham J' ticket you can.

    The proposal doesn't address this issue of decision paralysis at the ticket machine - such complexity can only be addressed with a smartcard system.
     
  15. Skymonster

    Skymonster Member

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    The seeming reliance on 'Check website' is also interesting. While I accept that interpreting 'Any permitted' requires study of the Routing Guide, are RDG really planning to point more and more travellers at the guide - or is there going to be a simplified website provided that will enable laymen to work out where and when they can travel?
     
  16. Muzer

    Muzer Established Member

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    NRE already attempts to do this. It works surprisingly well for some routes but still seems to miss out on other obvious ones. I don't know if there's some sanity limit for journey times or number of changes, but for instance, it'll only find three routes for Southampton Central to London Terminals - the obvious direct SWML one to Waterloo, via Reading to Paddington, or via Arundel to Victoria. There are plenty of other valid routes but none of these are listed! (Most obviously changing at Clapham Junction for Victoria instead of Waterloo, but plenty of others too)

    There is, however, a large sign directing you to the routeing guide for a full list of available routes.
     
    Last edited: 10 Aug 2018
  17. OwlMan

    OwlMan Established Member

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    Last edited: 10 Aug 2018
  18. swt_passenger

    swt_passenger Veteran Member

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    Yes, and it's a sound idea in principle, but as pointed out in a few previous threads about this topic, (and as is shown in the spreadsheet mentioned in the previous post), there are many origin stations (basically everywhere south and west of London) where there just isn't room to list all the valid "London Terminals" on a credit card sized ticket.
     
  19. Hadders

    Hadders Established Member

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    I'm sure the rail industry means well with this proposal but as is usually the case with the railway what's intended as simplification will probably end up as something far more complicated combined with a loss (or perceived loss) of flexibility for passengers.

    You only need to look at the fares 'simplification' that took place in 2008;
    the implementation of evening peak restrictions in many areas;
    Cross Country's blanket 09:30 cut off for Off Peak tickets making many long distance journeys impossible with an Off Peak ticket;
    The cack handed implementation of smart cards which in many cases offer less flexibility for no reduction in price.

    All of which were touted at making things more simple to understand for passengers but failed miserably to achieve this.

    What's wrong with a bit of publicity so that passengers have a better understanding of the some of these 'obscure' terms and the flexibility the rail network can offer.
     
  20. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    "Any Permitted" is pointless, it implies any route is permitted. By all means just leave it blank. Or they could consider having a piece of software that would generate the full set of Permitted Routes for a given pair of stations (not the junk I think they do have that generates only what a journey planner will give you without putting something in the via box) - you could put it on the tickets as nre.co.uk/route/MKC/MAN, for instance.
     
  21. infobleep

    infobleep Established Member

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    Although not spit ticketing per say, here is an example of reduced prices that would be hard to elemintae.

    Havant to Ryde Hoverport allows one to use a discount card such as Network Rail Card, other cards exist.

    One isn't allowed to buy a Portsmouth stations to Ryde Hoverport ticket. No discount on hovercraft it bought from them.

    Customer buys ticket from Havant, online and collects from Ticket Vending Machine at Portsmouth and Soithses. Thus discount taken. You'd have to ban starting short on all journeys to elemintae that.
     
  22. JB_B

    JB_B Member

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    The only problem with that is that the data in the London Terminals Mapping feed is horribly wrong and it has been wrong since the great cull of London Terminals at the end of 2017.

    Example : Aberdeen only has three terminals defined for route:Any Permitted - last time I checked it should have eight.

    This isn't a big problem for the moment because the LTM feed should play no part in any TIS's logic ( although I suspect the defects in the data effectively restrict the season tickets that NRE displays).

    However, if RDG are going to enforce travel to just current LTM mandated terminals only than that would be be massive reduction in ticket flexibility.
     
  23. gordonthemoron

    gordonthemoron Established Member

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    I have used split ticketing in the past on Anytime/Off Peak any permitted, however my main use for it is with Advances because it is often the case that there is no through Advance for the route you want to book. How is this going to help that?
     
  24. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    "Any reasonable route", whilst still a bit woolly, at least suggests that one should be aiming in roughly the right direction.
     
  25. Skymonster

    Skymonster Member

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    It's not going to help - this topic has nothing to do with split tickets - RDG have a separate ongoing public consultation which incorporates split ticketing.
     
  26. Skymonster

    Skymonster Member

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    I would be concerned that leaving a blank in place of 'Any permitted' may encourage some chancers to claim that there is no printed restriction on the ticket, and thus they can go any way they please.

    I appreciate RDG is claiming it will print 'See website' where there are a choice of routings, but I would also be concerned that specifying a 'via' on a ticket might inhibit routings that have been valid to date - and the instances of this might become more prevalent over time.
     
  27. MarlowDonkey

    MarlowDonkey Member

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    What about a Maidenhead to Zones 1-6 Travelcard? When last discussed, there was an opinion that it was valid via walking between the Windsor stations.

    Maidenhead and all the stations en route to Paddington from Reading are likely to become a special case if or perhaps when Oyster and contactless are extended past West Drayton..
     
  28. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    This isn't entirely clear. I'm sure I heard it suggested that the way it should be worked out is that you follow Permitted Routes to London Terminals, but once you cross and call at a station inside the Zone 6 boundary you can do what you like from then on in, until you do the same on the way back at which point you start the return half. But this isn't written down anywhere. Perhaps it does need codifying (as I think, but I think people may be disappointed with the result.

    Another option that is less strict is you pick a station within the Zones that you wish to travel to, and can follow any Permitted Routes to that destination. That one may be better as it doesn't rule out anything that anyone might reasonably wish to do.
     
  29. furlong

    furlong Established Member

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    Out-boundary travelcards are nothing to do with London Terminals - the ticket has two components, a travelcard valid within the stated zones plus a return to a boundary station using a permitted route entirely outside the zones to that boundary station (where the train doesn't need to stop at the boundary station).
     
  30. BluePenguin

    BluePenguin Member

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    Printing "See website" on the ticket will be useless to people like little old Doris who don't own a computer so can't look up ticket restrictions online. As much information should be printed as possible.

    As for those who want to travel a reasonable but unpermitted route, if the ticket doesn't say no then who is to say so?
     
  31. Hadders

    Hadders Established Member

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    Many outboundary travelcards are routed Any Permitted though....
     

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