What Would a Good System for Working out Fares Look Like?

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by DynamicSpirit, 3 Jan 2017.

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  1. John @ home

    John @ home Established Member Fares Advisor

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    Not quite. Of the places mentioned above, Dartford is in Kent and the others in Greater London. Until recently, Dartford was outside the Oyster zones. It has now been included in Oyster zone 8.
    A zonal system with a single management is sensible in and around large cities, but giving that job entirely to TfL will cause howls of outrage from towns such as Broxbourne, Dartford, Redhill and Watford. It seems to me that the northern cities have handled this better, forming City Regions which extend beyond the boundaries of the old metropolitan counties to cover the whole travel-to-work area. It can lead to oddities like Barnsley being in both Leeds City Region and Sheffield City Region, but it does seem to encourage co-operation and avoid the democratic deficit which is such a problem on the edge of Greater London.
    If devolution is to be genuine, it will lead to anomalies at boundaries. If the government's plan to devolve local transport to city regions is implemented in full, there will be a very large number of anomalies at boundaries. But will it give us better local rail services across the north of England? Despite the anomalies, I tend to think it will.
     
  2. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Would it be more likely that devolution would follow the German model, i.e. provision, operation and management devolved but a national fares model maintained? That model seems to have been very, very successful in Germany, with regional services being rather transformed from the very 1980s-BR look of a loco and a couple of rotting Silberlinge on a 2-hourly frequency to modern DMUs and EMUs much more often - and passenger growth to match.
     
  3. pne

    pne Member

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    And note that German routes are, at least as I understand it, not restricted to routes in the narrow sense of the word (simple A-B-C-D style linear routing) but can use "Raumbegrenzungen" (area restrictions?) which describe a kind of polygon à la "A-(B-C/X-Y)-D" which means "A to D via either B and C on the one hand, or X and Y on the other hand, or any route in between".

    This could, if desired, provide for routes of the kind "London-(Woolwich/Sidcup)-Dartford" or "York-(Leeds/Doncaster)-Sheffield", the former also being valid via Bexleyheath and the latter also being valid via Pontefract Baghill.

    I don't know how the price is calculated for such routings, however (on the longest possible route, some kind of average, or what).
     
  4. najaB

    najaB Veteran Member

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    So we start getting back into permitted routes - which is a large part of what people find too complex about the current system.
     
  5. sheff1

    sheff1 Established Member

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    A major problem with the current GB system is finding out what the permitted routes are and the lack of logic with some of them. Some permitted routes are frankly bizarre and would only be identified by the type of person who is on this forum, whereas other routes are not allowed, yet to the man in the street seem perfectly reasonable (e.g. the shortest journey time between origin and destination).

    "Any permitted" on a ticket tells people very little - some people believe it means they can go 'any' way - York to Sheffield via Manchester, say !

    With the system described, the routing is clearly printed on the ticket (including options, if appropriate). It helped by the fact that, in Germany, codes are widely used, outside of the railway, in lieu of the full name of towns and cities. This is not the case in the UK, so any routings would need to spell out the name in full (or very close to).
     
    Last edited: 18 Jan 2017
  6. pne

    pne Member

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    Agreed; I think a specification that's printed on the ticket is a different beast from the vague "any reasonable route" or "Any Permitted".
     
  7. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    What would you print on a Poppleton to Shireoaks ticket?
     
  8. pne

    pne Member

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    One possibility might be "Poppleton - (Harrogate-Leeds-Wakefield-Sheffield / York-Doncaster-Retford) - Shireoaks", implying that anything between the polygon implied by H-L-W-S on the one hand and Y-D-R on the other hand would also be acceptable.
     
  9. najaB

    najaB Veteran Member

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    Routeing by implication... And I thought this was going to be a better system. :)
     
  10. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    So add "Any route bounded by" and "without doubling back i.e. passing through a station twice", then. Not implicit then, actually quite explicit.

    I'd imagine writing a piece of software to generate that kind of thing from something similar to the current maps would not be an impossible task.
     
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