SWT seat reservations

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by districtline, 26 Oct 2011.

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  1. districtline

    districtline Member

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    I have discovered that SWT do not offer seat reservations with their advance tickets. This seems to be a bit unfair compared to what the other TOCs offer, why should people that don't have the common sense to plan ahead get priority for the seats?
     
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  3. bignosemac

    bignosemac Established Member

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    Equally, why should those with Advance Purchase, who generally pay less for a ticket, pro rata, be guaranteed a seat?

    SWT are primarily a commuter network and it is to that market they cater. Advance Purchase fares are, I believe, only available on Weymouth services beyond Southampton and West of England services beyond Salisbury. So like the rest of the commuters you have to be quick on your toes to bag a seat on departure from Waterloo. Or stand until one becomes available.
     
  4. Tom

    Tom Member

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    Seat reservations on SWT were removed as they were not considered as necessary with the introduction of 2tph to Weymouth and an all day hourly service to Exeter thereby increasing the capacity along these lines of route.

    Also, seat reservations were rarely even used. I frequently saw a coach full of reservations and about 10 seats taken at most.
     
  5. wintonian

    wintonian Established Member

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    Or you could reserve a seat for the evening peak from Waterloo like I have on occasion and certainly in the last year of seat reservations I never found any tickets put out.

    The reason not many people used them at the end was because SWT seem to have got rid of its mechinisem for putting the labels out, which I allways thought was quite important for reservations.

    Sent from my HTC Desire S

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  6. burneside

    burneside Member

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    I'm surprised SWT can get away with this practice, no other train company I have travelled with operates like this. I've never had a problem at Waterloo so far (though do travel in the middle of the day), the return from Exeter can be a different story - a three car train rammed full till more coaches are attached at Salisbury.
     
  7. Zoe

    Zoe Established Member

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    Is it always three coaches only from Exeter to Salibsury these days? I used to remember six coach formations from Exeter.
     
  8. LexyBoy

    LexyBoy Established Member Fares Advisor

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    ATW, LM and Chiltern all do too.

    For a primarily commuter operator, there isn't the need to assign seats (since the high-capacity units have plenty of spare seating at times when AP tickets are on sale, in theory) nor the infrastructure to do so (do LM/SWT Desiro seats even have a slot for reservation coupons?)
     
  9. John @ home

    John @ home Established Member Fares Advisor

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    My understanding is that Chiltern, LM and Southern operate like this and ATW operate in a similar, but not identical, manner.
     
  10. burneside

    burneside Member

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    I have travelled on a six coach train from Exeter within the last year, but the last few times during the summer it was always three.
     
  11. swt_passenger

    swt_passenger Veteran Member

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    Yes for SWT 444s - that's how they put the reservation labels out for the few years before they stopped, but not for 450s IIRC.
     
  12. Tom

    Tom Member

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    As others have mentioned, many other TOCs use the same system of book your train and not your seat. I've received this, personally, on Arriva Trains Wales, Chiltern, London Midland, National Express East Anglia, ScotRail, SWT and Southern.

    I believe it to be the case that the printer at Waterloo was broken half the time/people were forgetting to put them out when it was working. At one point, they started rear loading them from Weymouth for the SWML services.
     
  13. TEW

    TEW Established Member

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    There are plenty of six coach trains to Exeter still, but there are also plenty of three coach trains too.
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    I believe they still have reservations printers at Portsmouth Harbour, unless things have changed recently reservations for FGW's Cardiff services are printed on them.
     
  14. Zoe

    Zoe Established Member

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    Is there any way of finding which trains are six coaches other than going to the station and observing?
     
  15. trc666

    trc666 Member

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    RE 6 cars to Exeter, I will check my departures book for you.
     
  16. TEW

    TEW Established Member

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    6 cars are booked on the 0641, 0826, 1226, 1626, 1826(Fridays only, rear three carriages to Salisbury only.), 1926(Rear three carriages to Salisbury only.), 2026 (Read three carriages to Salisbury only.), 2123 (Fridays only.) and 2257(Fridays only.) departures from Exeter.
    6 cars booked on the 0552 Axminster to Exeter, 0608 Salisbury to Exeter, 0820, 1220, 1420(Fridays only.), 1520, 1620, 1720(Fridays only.) and 1820(Fridays only.) Waterloo to Exeter.
     
  17. Zoe

    Zoe Established Member

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    Thanks are the 0926 and 1026 departures from Exeter St Davids likely to be full and standing then?
     
  18. All Line Rover

    All Line Rover Established Member

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    :shock: When did ATW start doing that? I can reserve a seat whenever I want on the 175's!
     
  19. TEW

    TEW Established Member

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    Should be fine. Off peak they don't tend to be that busy.
     
  20. MCR247

    MCR247 Established Member

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    you can only reserve seats on tickets bought at the station or something ridiculous like that isnt it?
     
  21. All Line Rover

    All Line Rover Established Member

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    Nope - I can reserve seats online.
     
  22. LondonJohn

    LondonJohn Member

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    Its quite frustrating that they no longer offer seat reservations as I would quite happily pay for one on Summer saturday mornings (where it is a 5 coach train to Poole, Bournemouth and Weymouth and you get a ray of sunshine and half of London decide to travel down to the beach)

    Also, London bound on a Sunday afternoon/evening can be a nightmare too.

    It wouldnt be so bad if SWT made people put luggage in racks and not on seats/tables but the staff can't get through because of people and luggage in the aisles and corridors.
     
  23. bignosemac

    bignosemac Established Member

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    Really? Which booking engine are you using?
     
  24. Pumbaa

    Pumbaa Established Member

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    All Desiro seats have them, including the 450/350/2 seats.
     
  25. All Line Rover

    All Line Rover Established Member

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    WebTIS. I bought a Whitchurch to Crewe ticket today (with a reservation on a Class 175) and collected it just a few hours ago. Whenever I travel on Class 175's during peak hours, almost every seat has a reservation label!
     
  26. Capybara

    Capybara Member

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    What bignosemac said. And what about people who don't want the train companies to organise their lives?
     
  27. bignosemac

    bignosemac Established Member

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    Interesting. Book a walk-up ticket online and you are offered a seat reservation. Book an Advance Purchase ticket for the same journey and you are only offered 'booked train'.

    So it appears we have a TOC offering seat reservations to those pax who pay more for their ticket. That'll please some folk!
     
    Last edited: 26 Oct 2011
  28. Tom

    Tom Member

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    People with Advance fares on ATW may obtain a proper seat reservation by going to a station ticket office.
     
  29. All Line Rover

    All Line Rover Established Member

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    Wow - what a weird way of doing things! :lol: As a person who regularly buys walk-up tickets (and never buys Advance tickets) on ATW, I'm actually quite pleased*, but at the same time I am very surprised. Almost every seat is reserved when I travel on 175's in the morning peak. It would genuinely surprise me if they had all been made by Off-Peak/Anytime/Season ticket holders.

    *Scrap that. Having realized that Advance tickets are only available on extremely long journeys with ATW (longer than Virgin and similar operators) I am now quite annoyed! <(
     
    Last edited: 26 Oct 2011
  30. Welshman

    Welshman Established Member

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    Interesting - on two occasions recently I've been able to book seats online for the 175-operated Manchester-Llandudno services, but the reservations were not even put out on the seats concerned.
     
  31. All Line Rover

    All Line Rover Established Member

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    It appears that ATW have no firm policy with regard to seat reservations. That's a bit annoying!

    May I ask whether you traveled on a quiet or busy train?
     
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