will east coast trains participate in regular rail ticketing?

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plugwash

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As I understand it it open access operators can decide whether or not to participate in the regular rail ticketing system. Grand Central, Hull trains and Heathrow express all participate, do we know if that will also be the case for east coast trains?
 
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As I understand it it open access operators can decide whether or not to participate in the regular rail ticketing system. Grand Central, Hull trains and Heathrow express all participate, do we know if that will also be the case for east coast trains?
I seem to remember that they will NOT be partaking. I believe their plan is for reservation compulsory their own fares only model.
 

Eboordna

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I thought the Open Access operators made thier money by the ORCATS allocation from simply calling at a station ?
ALL operators gain ORCATS share of any tickets which are valid on their services, just in the same way LNER will get ORCATS share from other TOCs when they begin serving Middlesbrough, for example.
 

pdeaves

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ALL operators gain ORCATS share of any tickets which are valid on their services, just in the same way LNER will get ORCATS share from other TOCs when they begin serving Middlesbrough, for example.
To expand on this, if East Coast will accept 'any permitted route' tickets, it will get an allocation from ORCATS, but if East Coast does 'own fares only' it will not get any allocation.
 

guildford

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Lets hope that First East Coast Trains accept all normal tickets as otherwise i can just imagine that hundreds of passengers with "Any Permitted" tickets boarding these trains every day will get kicked off or made to buy a new ticket. It would be chaos. It would be the first time that "Any Permitted" tickets did not actually mean you could use any TOC.

I do not like the idea of them also using a compulsory reservation system if that is going to happen. The ones in place due to the virus have all been chaos although luckily they have not always been enforced. But i was hoping now the virus restrictions have ended that First East Coast Trains would not use such a system.

Also does anyone know if they will have a Penalty Fare system on these trains? Are open access operators even allowed to operate a Penalty Fare system? Or will those without tickets just be kicked off or made to purchase a new ticket?
 

Eboordna

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Lets hope that First East Coast Trains accept all normal tickets as otherwise i can just imagine that hundreds of passengers with "Any Permitted" tickets boarding these trains every day will get kicked off or made to buy a new ticket. It would be chaos. It would be the first time that "Any Permitted" tickets did not actually mean you could use any TOC.

I do not like the idea of them also using a compulsory reservation system if that is going to happen. The ones in place due to the virus have all been chaos although luckily they have not always been enforced. But i was hoping now the virus restrictions have ended that First East Coast Trains would not use such a system.

Also does anyone know if they will have a Penalty Fare system on these trains? Are open access operators even allowed to operate a Penalty Fare system? Or will those without tickets just be kicked off or made to purchase a new ticket?
I will be able to answer all of those questions for you in a few weeks.
 

Watershed

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Also does anyone know if they will have a Penalty Fare system on these trains? Are open access operators even allowed to operate a Penalty Fare system? Or will those without tickets just be kicked off or made to purchase a new ticket?
I doubt that they will introduce Penalty Fares - but they would be perfectly entitled to do so if they wanted.
 

Sleepy

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They could introduce boarding controls given limited stop nature of the services, and given barriers wide open at Kings Cross frequently who'd blame them ? Depends whether they want to make money by selling new tickets to clueless LNER ticket holders.
 

Haywain

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I will be able to answer all of those questions for you in a few weeks.
I imagine that once they start services plenty of us will be able to answer those questions but one might think that an outfit that allegedly plans to start running next month might be keen on letting people know what they're planning by now.
They could introduce boarding controls given limited stop nature of the services, and given barriers wide open at Kings Cross frequently who'd blame them ? Depends whether they want to make money by selling new tickets to clueless LNER ticket holders.
I'm not sure how boarding controls would work at Newcastle, unless you propose having a member of staff at every door.
 

Eboordna

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I imagine that once they start services plenty of us will be able to answer those questions but one might think that an outfit that allegedly plans to start running next month might be keen on letting people know what they're planning by now.

I'm not sure how boarding controls would work at Newcastle, unless you propose having a member of staff at every door.
I am enjoying the speculation on this! The service is not starting next month (it’s October) and all the info will be available when services go on sale.
 
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Sleepy

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I imagine that once they start services plenty of us will be able to answer those questions but one might think that an outfit that allegedly plans to start running next month might be keen on letting people know what they're planning by now.

I'm not sure how boarding controls would work at Newcastle, unless you propose having a member of staff at every door.
Wasn't aware they were calling at Newcastle.
 

guildford

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I am surprised that First East Coast Trains are still very quiet about the details of their fares and everything else when it will be starting soon. You would think they would want to give passengers plenty of notice. I have not even seen any publicity or even a website for them yet.

Lets hope that they will start releasing some information soon. Otherwise they will be very quiet in the first month or so as people will not be aware of them. A website would be a good start.

Does anyone know yet if the trains will be DOO or if they will have a Guard on board? Seeing as they are a brand new operator i imagine it would be very easy to go DOO as they have no current staff so i am guessing that DOO is how they will operate? If so will there be guaranteed staff onboard all trains for the entire journey or just some ticket inspectors randomly boarding trains?
 

ainsworth74

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Does anyone know yet if the trains will be DOO or if they will have a Guard on board? Seeing as they are a brand new operator i imagine it would be very easy to go DOO as they have no current staff so i am guessing that DOO is how they will operate? If so will there be guaranteed staff onboard all trains for the entire journey or just some ticket inspectors randomly boarding trains?

They will appear to be having "Customer Experience Ambassadors" and have been recruiting for them (see here for instance) which appear to be slightly glorified conductors though from the adverts for drivers that have been floating around suggests that the drivers will be regularly dispatching the trains (see this long running thread here). In any event whilst the detail is thin I think we can safely assume that there will be more staff on board than just the driver!
 

Huntergreed

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I have heard rumours that they will be operating an airline style model of ticketing (ie compulsory reservations, you must sit in your reserved seat, different prices for different seats).

It’s clear that using this model, it would be impossible to also allow flexible fares for these services.

It’ll be an interesting route to go down and I look forward to seeing how it pans out, if it does.
 

centro-323

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... Lets hope that they will start releasing some information soon. Otherwise they will be very quiet in the first month or so as people will not be aware of them. A website would be a good start...

Pretty sure they'll not just start running trains with zero notice and hope for the best! Some time in October is the last I heard about a launch so plenty of time to get people excited and sell a few tickets for xmas shopping etc
 

matt_world2004

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As I understand it it open access operators can decide whether or not to participate in the regular rail ticketing system. Grand Central, Hull trains and Heathrow express all participate, do we know if that will also be the case for east coast trains?
Heathrow express doesn't participate in regular rail ticketing.
 

Ianno87

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Lets hope that First East Coast Trains accept all normal tickets as otherwise i can just imagine that hundreds of passengers with "Any Permitted" tickets boarding these trains every day will get kicked off or made to buy a new ticket. It would be chaos. It would be the first time that "Any Permitted" tickets did not actually mean you could use any TOC.

No different in principle to not being able to use Any Permitted tickets on a Charter service, which are usually advertised on departure boards like all other trains (usually with a "Special Ticket Holders only" message).

Or, like erstwhile LNER compulsory reservations (or any other CR instances), where simply holding an Any Permitted ticket does not guarantee travel.
 

JamesT

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Originally they didn't as they were funded by BAA outside the franchised network. But Heathrow is now part of the national network, it is operated as part of the GWR contract.

Although GWR are providing the service, they are essentially acting as subcontractors. Heathrow Express remains an Open Access operation run by Heathrow Airport.
 

thedbdiboy

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Although GWR are providing the service, they are essentially acting as subcontractors. Heathrow Express remains an Open Access operation run by Heathrow Airport.
Indeed but from a customer viewpoint it is much more integrated now. The fact that GWR handle the operational end means that Heathrow Airport can deliver a feeder service to the network rather than (as was originally the case) an isolated service.
 

Ianno87

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Indeed but from a customer viewpoint it is much more integrated now.

Not really. The trains still look like Heathrow Express trains, say Heathrow Express on the side, and you have to buy tickets that say "Heathrow Express". The only difference is that GWR now provide the trains and staff every day under contract. HEX does everything else.
 

HamworthyGoods

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I have heard rumours that they will be operating an airline style model of ticketing (ie compulsory reservations, you must sit in your reserved seat, different prices for different seats).

It’s clear that using this model, it would be impossible to also allow flexible fares for these services.

It’ll be an interesting route to go down and I look forward to seeing how it pans out, if it does.

Indeed, it finally brings GB in line with many European countries where the likes of Regiojet and Flixtrain operate completely private services with their own competitive pricing structure.
 

Taunton

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The normal commercial way to handle this is to say you are completely independent and not Orcats-raiding current fares. This gets you the approval from the ORR. You then start, get the buy-in from some influential MPs etc about cheap fares, and then say you aren't making money and will have to withdraw the service unless you are let in to regular ticketing, completely forgetting to mention you started off saying you didn't want it, and if you are "forced" to withdraw the service it's all the ORR's fault for not letting you in ...

One very much hopes the operator does not charge people with valid "any operator" tickets again, and certainly not charge penalty fares. It is their responsibility to come up with an approach to check everyone has valid tickets before boarding. If they want to be like an airline, be like an airline. Maybe they even get fined by the ORR if they let anyone on board without a valid ticket. That's what happens to airlines.
 
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