Which train operator companies have best strategies?

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by hawaii2468, 14 Nov 2011.

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  1. hawaii2468

    hawaii2468 Member

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    Which TOCs do you think have the best strategies on route design, marketing, ticketing, policy implemetation etc?

    Personally I like FCC London St Pancras - Bedfrod. It was devided into 2 routes, the fast service from St Pancras - Bedfrod with first stop at St Albans. This makes passengers from north more convenient and time saving to travel into London. Whereas the slow service from St Pancras and St Albans stopping all stations covers the needs for London nearby suburbs.

    The other TOC I like is Southwestern train. It has 3 services from London Waterloo to Staines. The fastest is Waterloo - Reading. As there are faster services from Reading - London by First Great Western, Southwestern's Reading - Waterloo might not target the passengers from reading but the far south west suburbs from London. The other route is Waterloo - Windsor & Eton Riverside. Which stops at more smaller stations such as Vauxhall, Putney, Ashford etc. It gives supplimentary services for the fast route.
    The slowest service is from Weybridge - Waterloo via Hounslow, stops every stations. It definitely couldn't attract passengers from Weybridge so it's more like a inter-suburb commuter route. So every route has its own target and function, that's what I like.

    Sorry if my writing might be not very clear . Everyone is welcomed to give comment.
     
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  3. MidnightFlyer

    MidnightFlyer Veteran Member

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    I doubt TOCs get very little say in what you mentioned, that's for the DfT to dictate!
     
  4. hawaii2468

    hawaii2468 Member

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    About ticketing, I like the Southwest train's supper off peak ticket for travelling to London after 1130 at weekdays and weekends. Whereas it seems that FCC only provide this type of ticket at weekends.

    For trains I prefer Southwest train, it looks newer, more advance (with air conditioners) from inside and smoother while in high speed. Red colour looks cleaner than FCC's purple for seats.
     
  5. tbtc

    tbtc Veteran Member

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    This was the case under Thameslink (e.g. pre First), so they can't really take the credit.

    Its hard to know what is the TOC and what is because of DfT/ state support/ councils etc.

    Thats why you can't really compare Serco (operators of Northern) and Virgin (operators of the WCML franchise) as they have got such different franchises to start with, and what works with one wouldn't work with the other.

    I think Stagecoach have some good strategies - the different liveried trains for different "speeds" of service (though all in the corporate colours (a bit like the way that British Rail used the same template for InterCity/ Regional Railways/ ScotRail). Plus the Red Dot Day is a great way of boosting demand at quieter stations (e.g doing it from East Midlands Parkway to attract people to use the station).

    A lot of other things are hard to pin on the TOC or not (e.g. are heavy peak restrictions on Virgin just because of the high demand for London trains at rush hour, or would another TOC offer cheaper tickets in the peak? Are XC's high fares because there's no spare capacity for additional passengers on bargain tickets, or is this company policy? Can First ScotRail be praised for introducing new trains when really the Scottish Parliament are the ones writing the cheques?)
     
  6. martinsh

    martinsh Established Member

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    Strategy ?! Since when did any TOC have a strategy ? That makes them sound almost intelligent !:D
     
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