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Total idiot moment with railcards

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sciisfun

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Good evening all,
I was hoping someone could offer some advice with regards to a booking I've made.
I'm traveling on my 26th birthday, and booked advanced tickets on a 26-30 railcard with GWR, assuming that I would be able to get a railcard that starts on my 26th birthday (I tried to buy a 16-25 railcard a few months ago and it kept erroring out, and wouldn't let me buy one) but would go through with a 26-30 at the time however it won't let me process one now (and now buy a 16-25 card)
Does anyone know if there is a way to either get a 26-30 railcard processed while your 25, or if there's a way to swap it over to a 16-25 railcard?
 
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mikeg

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Why didn't you buy a 16-25 ticket? You can get a 16-25 Railcard up to the day before you turn 26 and it'll be valid for a year and even while you're 26. It may be worth contacting GWR customer services, assuming you booked with them and hope for some discretion.
 

sciisfun

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Why didn't you buy a 16-25 ticket? You can get a 16-25 Railcard up to the day before you turn 26 and it'll be valid for a year and even while you're 26.
It wouldn't sell me one when I tried, it just kept erroring out, but when I went to the 26-30 it went passed the step that it was erroring out at before, I didn't buy it when I was looking at the time because I didn't want to waste a few months when I knew I wouldn't be traveling
 

Merseysider

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You could buy a 26-30 railcard on your phone on your 26th birthday; admittedly I bought mine almost a year ago so the process might’ve changed but if you have a passport or driving license it should process quickly.

However, that would mean sacrificing one big benefit of the 16-25 railcard - no minimum fare over the summer.

Agree that contacting GWR is worth a shot first.
 

sciisfun

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You could buy a 26-30 railcard on your phone on your 26th birthday; admittedly I bought mine almost a year ago so the process might’ve changed but if you have a passport or driving license it should process quickly.

However, that would mean sacrificing one big benefit of the 16-25 railcard - no minimum fare over the summer.

Agree that contacting GWR is worth a shot first.
GWR have said refund and rebuy (and I would take the small penalty in cost difference and admin fees) but on the booking section it says that refunds aren't available. The railcard is saying 5-7 days even for digital at the moment, also my first train is 7am, so I doubt it would be picked up between midnight and then
 

mikeg

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The other option is to not waste time on badly implemented apps and go with some ID and a photo to a booking office.
 

mikeg

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Ah sorry I was thinking of a 16-25 , which is the better Railcard (also no minimum fare in July and August). Agree it's no good explanation and very anti passenger.
 

Mcr Warrior

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At the risk of stating the obvious, please don't be tempted to travel using the discounted tickets without also holding the appropriate, and valid, railcard.

Been plenty of newbies on here of recent who have got into bother for travelling using discounted tickets but with either an expired or non-existent railcard. :!:
 

mikeg

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Would it be cheaper to buy the 16-25 Railcard now and write off the tickets? Especially if you can't get a 26-30 Railcard in advance? Also you could contact the Railcard website for support regarding purchasing a 26-30 Railcard. It's extraordinarily bad if there's a few days where you can't have a Railcard to which youre entitled to buy. Also shows the disadvantages of digital railcards and why we must resist further moves to digital only.
 

sciisfun

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Ah sorry I was thinking of a 16-25 , which is the better Railcard (also no minimum fare in July and August). Agree it's no good explanation and very anti passenger.
I liked my 16-25 plastic card, many a trip was done long after my phone and power bank had died on a day out, it threw me when I couldn't renew it, which is why I thought that there was a change in policy getting new ones, which got me into the issue in the first place
At the risk of stating the obvious, please don't be tempted to travel using the discounted tickets without also holding the appropriate, and valid, railcard.

Been plenty on here of recent who have got into bother for travelling with either an expired or non-existent railcard.
No, I would never do that. I wouldn't dare jeopardise a future career in the industry (even if my station is one of the few in my area that is out of the penalty fare zone)

Would it be cheaper to buy the 16-25 Railcard now and write off the tickets? Especially if you can't get a 26-30 Railcard in advance? Also you could contact the Railcard website for support regarding purchasing a 26-30 Railcard. It's extraordinarily bad if there's a few days where you can't have a Railcard to which youre entitled to buy. Also shows the disadvantages of digital railcards and why we must resist further moves to digital only.
Tickets were £120, so would rather not, fair whack of change when about half of my pay goes out on tools for work, I've found something about being able to exchange for an E-rail voucher, so going down that route, and hoping that I get it before the 'cheap' tickets run out. I can buy and renew my 16-25 railcard now, so the railcard website had some issue at the time, just a pain. They've essentially said,' yeah, we know that there's issues with the website, good luck'
 

Haywain

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Good evening all,
I was hoping someone could offer some advice with regards to a booking I've made.
I'm traveling on my 26th birthday, and booked advanced tickets on a 26-30 railcard with GWR, assuming that I would be able to get a railcard that starts on my 26th birthday (I tried to buy a 16-25 railcard a few months ago and it kept erroring out, and wouldn't let me buy one) but would go through with a 26-30 at the time however it won't let me process one now (and now buy a 16-25 card)
Does anyone know if there is a way to either get a 26-30 railcard processed while your 25, or if there's a way to swap it over to a 16-25 railcard?
When (roughly) is your birthday?
 

sciisfun

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I don’t think you can get railcards more than a month in advance - could that have been the problem?
I tried this morning, so would be within the month, but Railcard have said I can't buy it till my 26th birthday, no preloading, or even just having it start early, which I would be fine with, I've just bought my 16-25 now the system now allows me to renew (which It didn't before)
 

lawried123

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As the 26-30 is digital, you should just be able to buy it on the day?
My visiting Canadian cousin wanted to buy a 26-30 Railcard, she went to the Trainline website and bought one but it said you had to download the app in order to access the railcard. But her iPhone wouldn't download the app which apparently only works on very modern iPhones. But nothing was said about that when she bought it on the website.
When she phoned up to get a refund for something that was not her fault, she was told categorically no refunds. She was not impressed !
 

Bletchleyite

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My visiting Canadian cousin wanted to buy a 26-30 Railcard, she went to the Trainline website and bought one but it said you had to download the app in order to access the railcard. But her iPhone wouldn't download the app which apparently only works on very modern iPhones. But nothing was said about that when she bought it on the website.
When she phoned up to get a refund for something that was not her fault, she was told categorically no refunds. She was not impressed !

Interestingly this page says there ARE refunds provided you have not downloaded it, allowing for this precise situation:


If you purchased your digital Railcard online or by telephone, you have the right to cancel this contract within 14 days without giving any reason. The cancellation period will expire 14 days from the day on which you receive your token to enable you to download your Railcard to the Railcard app.

You will be able to download your digital Railcard to your mobile device before the end of the 14-day cancellation period referred to in the previous paragraph, but if you do so you will lose your right to cancel. If you are not sure you want your Railcard, do not download it before your cancellation period expires.

To exercise your right to cancel, you must inform us of your decision to cancel this contract by a clear statement (e.g. a letter sent by post or email) using the contact details on this website. You can also download, complete and submit the model cancellation form, but it is not obligatory. If you choose to exercise the right to cancel, we will send you an acknowledgement of receipt of the cancellation by email or post without delay.

To exercise your right to cancel, you need to send us your cancellation notification before the end of the cancellation period.

If you cancel this contract, we will reimburse all payments received from you. we will make the reimbursement without undue delay, and not later than 14 days after the day on which we are informed about your decision to cancel this contract. We will make the reimbursement using the same means of payment as you used for the initial transaction and you will not incur any fees as a result of the reimbursement.

Refunds are not available after the 14-day cancellation period has expired.
 

Mcr Warrior

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My visiting Canadian cousin wanted to buy a 26-30 Railcard, she went to the Trainline website and bought one but it said you had to download the app in order to access the railcard. But her iPhone wouldn't download the app which apparently only works on very modern iPhones. But nothing was said about that when she bought it on the website.
When she phoned up to get a refund for something that was not her fault, she was told categorically no refunds. She was not impressed !

It is in the conditions, perhaps not that prominently, and in any event, who ever reads all the small print? :rolleyes:

26-30 Railcard conditions said:
System requirements

5.1. In order to use the 'Railcard' app, you are required to have a compatible mobile telephone or handheld device, internet access, and the necessary minimum specifications ('Software Requirements').

5.2. The Software Requirements are as follows: Apple iOS 10 and above and Android 4.1 and above.
 

infobleep

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It is in the conditions, perhaps not that prominently, and in any event, who ever reads all the small print? :rolleyes:
Prominent conditions should be made clear. I'd suggest this was a key one that should have been highlighted.
 

Joe Paxton

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GWR have said refund and rebuy (and I would take the small penalty in cost difference and admin fees) but on the booking section it says that refunds aren't available. The railcard is saying 5-7 days even for digital at the moment, also my first train is 7am, so I doubt it would be picked up between midnight and then

Is there a manual process for verifying the age of 26-30 Railcard applicants? My impression was that, when backed up by a passport or UK driving licence, the age verification was pretty immediate. But maybe I've got the wrong impression.
 

janb

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It is in the conditions, perhaps not that prominently, and in any event, who ever reads all the small print? :rolleyes:

The Trainline (which the person purchased through) in its FAQs has a higher iOS requirement,
Railcards | UK Digital Railcards | Buy Online From Trainline (thetrainline.com)
Digital Railcards will only work on iPhones using iOS 13 and above. As such, some older iPhone models running iOS versions below iOS 13 may not be able to support Railcards bought through Trainline. Make sure you check which software version your iPhone is running before purchasing a Railcard.
But yes they clearly should make system requirements a prominent feature of the selling process.
 
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