Two Together Railcard returns 3 March 2014

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by bignosemac, 1 Feb 2014.

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  1. bignosemac

    bignosemac Established Member

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    Have heard from a member of rail staff on another forum that they were issued with a staff brief saying that the Two Together Railcard will be rolled out nationally in March/April of this year.

    Has anyone else heard this, and can confirm it?
     
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  3. coopermd80

    coopermd80 New Member

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    ATOC have confirmed me to via email that the Two Together will launch nationally. It is just a matter of a launch date, it was originally thought this would be in Feb but more likely now March or April.
     
  4. Goatboy

    Goatboy Established Member

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    This sounds like great news. Will it be priced similarly to other railcards?
     
  5. John @ home

    John @ home Established Member Fares Advisor

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    Almost certainly. The West Midlands trial was priced the same as most other national Railcards.
     
  6. paddington

    paddington Member

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    This is good news, I'll probably get one after my YP runs out, but will now need to convince my gf to come along on my train journeys!
     
  7. furryfeet

    furryfeet Member

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    Will the T&Cs be as restrictive as in the trial version ?
    i.e. will they get rid of
    a) no travel before 0930 Mon - Fri
    b) both the named cardholders have to travel together. Would be better if it were one cardholder, plus one other adult - c.f. family railcard

    If both a) and b) were abolished, then I would definitely get one. If they remain, then I will think twice.
     
  8. Sleepy

    Sleepy Member

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    Highly unlikely that pre 0930 travel will be permitted as part time commuters will pair up !
     
  9. Goatboy

    Goatboy Established Member

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    Quite. I see no issue with either of those conditions if this is a 'Two Together' railcard.

    The lack of a national railcard for single people aged between 27 and 60 remains hugely irritating, mind.
     
  10. JonathanH

    JonathanH Established Member

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    Now that this is known, is there any likelihood of the Network Railcard being withdrawn at the same time?
     
  11. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    Have they confirmed whether the status of the Network card will change with this development ?
     
  12. CockneySparrow

    CockneySparrow Established Member

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    Can't see why it would be withdrawn, its a totally different card altogether

    Withdrawing it would discourage people to travel unless you are with someone else who is named on the card

    I use mine alot on my own, no network card no travel
     
    Last edited: 2 Feb 2014
  13. Be3G

    Be3G Established Member

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    There was a rumour on these forums last year – a customer reporting something a ticket office clerk had said – about something happening to the Network Railcard in light of the Two Together one. Hopefully a rumour is all it will prove to be.
     
  14. transmanche

    transmanche Established Member

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    Hopefully. Already the minimum weekday fare has made it far less attractive than it used to be.
     
  15. bb21

    bb21 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    This vividly illustrates one of the potential benefits of this new product, ie. additional passengers (the girlfriend in this case) making journeys they wouldn't normally make without the existence of this product.
     
  16. gswindale

    gswindale Member

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    I'm certainly interested by this - for the past few years; my other half has had a network card as she goes into London more often socially than myself; however this card could be more beneficial for some of our other trips out & about.
     
  17. Greeby

    Greeby Member

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    I don't see it catching on much round this town. Especially if the Virgin easement doesn't apply.

    Expanding the Network Railcard area, even if it's just to the towns it stops short of (Rugby, Peterborough, Ipswich etc) would be more useful.
     
  18. PermitToTravel

    PermitToTravel Established Member

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    No, it would be more beneficial to you. It would abstract revenue from the TOCs, and I'm sure far, far more people would like a national Two Together railcard than would like the Network Railcard validity extended to Rugby.
     
  19. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    The Network Railcard encourages travel on commuter routes outside of the off-peak which would otherwise not be filled. It generates revenue, not abstracts it.

    I'm sure far more people would prefer a national railcard of the type that exists in other countries in Europe rather than some Two Together affair.
     
  20. PermitToTravel

    PermitToTravel Established Member

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    If it would generate revenue nationally, then it would already be available nationally.
    Of course
     
  21. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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  22. IanXC

    IanXC Emeritus Moderator

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    I don't think there's any reason to think that the Network Railcard would not generate more demand if rolled out nationally. As far as I can see the biggest reason for not doing so is Supply. The Network area generally has much more capacity than elsewhere, and so it makes sense to offer widespread discounts to generate further patronage in the off peak.

    Until there is widespread electrification and 4/8 car EMU workings carring around fresh air off peak in the rest of the country, I see little chance of the Network area (or a "National Railcard").
     
  23. PermitToTravel

    PermitToTravel Established Member

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    I don't think that the TOCs care more about having overcrowded trains than they do about having more money. Even if people have to wait for the second or third train, they will pay the same fare.
    Thanks, I didn't realise research had already been done on this. That said, the research does seem rather biased from my cursory glance, with a few outlandish claims made and the benefits clearly overstated. There is no way that a £30/year card giving 50% off (allowing everyone to pay child rate off peak!!) will be more profitable than a £20/year card giving 30% off. The price tipping point for the majority of the population for the majority of journeys will simply be the cost of making a journey by driving, and most of the time the current railcard rate of 33% seems right. Giving more of a discount won't encourage more people to switch from driving, it'll just result in more money being taken from those who do.
    As the report authors admit, assuming that the rate of change of demand with respect to fares is constant causes it to overestimate demand increases wildly.
     
  24. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    I think you make a reasonable point about the size of the discount. I'm more inclined towards the 33% level as it's been tried and tested with the existing railcards (and has been shown to work). Two things that I think do stand up about the National Railcard are the psychological effect of people paying a "sunk" cost for the railcard and trying to get as much benefit from it as possible by using it for as many journeys as possible (I know I do this with the Network Card), and the additional funds that would accrue to the railway from the initial purchase of railcards.

    I think one thing also to bear in mind though is that the railcards aren't just about making people switch from the car, but are also about making people make trips out that they may not have made anyway.

    I take IanXC's point about overcrowding to an extent, although whilst there are some pinch points on the RR network, I also think there is quite a lot of capacity around to soak up a lot of this. I also suspect there is likely quite a bit of supressed demand, particularly for the sort of middle distance journeys that tend to be over the £20 mark but don't tend to have advanced fares so often. I think a National Railcard would help to tap some of this.
     
    Last edited: 2 Feb 2014
  25. MKB

    MKB Member

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    I used my Two Together railcard extensively during the trial. The one thing I'd like to see changed is what happens when one of the two of you is unexpectedly unable to travel, for example because of sickness.

    I think it is not unreasonable to let the remaining passenger travel solo using BOTH tickets. After all, that means you've paid 134% of the fare you should have paid. But the trial rules meant you had to scrap (or refund if possible less admin fees) the original tickets and buy a brand new one, which seems harsh.
     
  26. CockneySparrow

    CockneySparrow Established Member

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    No, this card is no good to no one, the only people who would benefit are couples joined to the hip

    If the second one doesn't travel this card is useless, besides so many advance tickets now especially out of the Network card area its hardly worth those joined to the hip buying it

    Just my opinion, guess its down to peoples lifestyle
     
  27. Goatboy

    Goatboy Established Member

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    Rubbish. At the same price as any other railcard it works out at £15 each. You only need make one journey together at a regular price of more than £45 each and you've already broken even.

    I'll definatley buy one.
     
  28. CockneySparrow

    CockneySparrow Established Member

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    Probably something to do with validity is concerned to extend to Peterborough, would extending it to Peterborough mean validity on East Coast, and does EC mind
     
  29. LexyBoy

    LexyBoy Established Member Fares Advisor

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    Fantastic news - if true I shall have to withdraw my cynicism about the trial being designed to fail.

    We use a Family Railcard quite a lot with our under-5, so it would probably be worthwhile getting a Two Together as well to avoid having to pay for a CHFAM ticket. OTOH the flexibility of the Family Railcard is great, so we'll probably be a 4-railcard household (already using FAM, NSE and GOLDC)!
     
  30. nrturner

    nrturner Member

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    This will be great for my wife and I - at least until we have kids and can get a F&F card. I was worried that it wasn't going to happen when I saw the trial had ended.
     
  31. IanD

    IanD Established Member

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    It's already valid on East Coast to Stevenage.

    Would be better to change the terms of the F&F card so that the only requirement is that 2 people travel together, at least 1 of which should be an adult named on the card (eg 2 adults, 1 adult+1child) and maybe (but preferably not) limit it to 2 adults and 4 children max.

    We are currently a 5 railcard family - 2xYP, 1xGoldC, 1xNSE (£1 gold partner) and 1xF&F allowing us discounts for 14 adults and 12 children in the NSE area! There are only 4 of us.
     
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