Wrexham to Edinburgh first class - no ticket check

Discussion in 'Trip Planning & Reports' started by davsarg, 26 Apr 2015.

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  1. davsarg

    davsarg Member

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    I took this journey this Friday just gone (24th) and I should firstly explain that of course I did pay for this journey, the £60 Advance ticket having been bought 2 months ago.

    What amazed me though is that between arriving at Wrexham station and walking out of Edinburgh station (changed at Crewe), not only did I not have to pass through any barriers; my ticket and seat reservation weren't checked once during the whole journey! So in effect then, had I been a deliberate fare dodger, I could have had my comfy first class seat, my lovely breakfast and all that coffee and juice totally free! That's incredible! How could this be when the train terminates at Edinburgh and there are no ticket barriers for the Inter City platforms?

    Comments anyone?
     
  2. ANorthernGuard

    ANorthernGuard Established Member

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    That is quite poor from the traincrew. The only times I don't check tickets is its full and standing and am physically unable to get through, Machine fault or if i don't feel safe. As I only do locals it can be quite hard work some days.
     
  3. thelongestroad

    thelongestroad Member

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    Indeed. It is a pretty poor show... in this day and age we should be justifying our positions.

    Mitigating circumstances may have prevented an Avantix working but there is no excuse for not checking tickets anyway.
     
  4. deltic

    deltic Established Member

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    I regularly travel from Birmingham to Euston in the afternoon usually standard but occasionally first and ticket checks are infrequent - while in the morning from Euston I have always had my ticket checked in first as well as going through the manual check to get on the platform - although I have accidentally presented a wrongly dated ticket at Euston which was not picked up.
     
  5. najaB

    najaB Veteran Member

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    I'm not surprised by the lack of barriers - Wrexham probably doesn't need them, and Edinburgh has them for the 'local' platforms - but I'm very surprised by no ticket checks at all for a four-hour journey.
     
  6. Failed Unit

    Failed Unit Established Member

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    Having used the Edinburgh- Birmingham route a lot I am not surprised. Heading south you get checked after Edinburgh and maybe at Preston following the Crewe change. Heading north no check is very common. (Preston - Edinburgh TPE check at each station Virgin are not as bothered)
     
  7. Blindtraveler

    Blindtraveler Established Member

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    Nowhere near enough to a Pacer :(
    There is quite often a block in place at Carlisle in even peek. If a voyager or 9 car pendo the VT services can sometimes use P12 at EDB which is not so well used
     
  8. davsarg

    davsarg Member

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    Speaking as a traveller rather than a railway employee - come again in English!;)
     
    Last edited: 26 Apr 2015
  9. MidnightFlyer

    MidnightFlyer Veteran Member

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    I don't think ticket checking on the London-Birmi-Scotland VT runs are aided by the frequency of station stops: nowhere south of Lancaster is more than 30 mins between calls, which is probably how long it takes to reasonably and effectively check a well-loaded Pendo. There are a few longer runs (Euston-MKC, MKC-Cov and Wolves-Crewe are all half an hour) but not many. Not that that excuses this instance though.
     
  10. davsarg

    davsarg Member

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    Yes I can quite understand why tickets wouldn't be checked anywhere between Crewe & Carlisle, but the journey time between Carlise & the next stop Haymarket was an hour and 15 minutes - much more than the 30 you've suggested. I was fully expecting my ticket to be checked then, but no-one came
     
  11. Failed Unit

    Failed Unit Established Member

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    I don't think I have ever seen a pendo in the "terminating" platforms at Waverley, 5 car voyagers and TPEs yes but not a 390. (Not saying it was never happened). Trying to think what the maximum length is on 14, 15, 16 and 17.

    As for the frequent stops, they could at least attempt to do it. East coast have the same problems Peterborough - York / Leeds. But even getting 2 or 3 coaches between stops helps. I am sure Flamingo has similar challenges on FGW with similar short runs between stops.
     
  12. davsarg

    davsarg Member

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    Just for info my train actually arrived into platform 8W
     
  13. tsr

    tsr Established Member

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    There definitely seems to be considerable variance between TOCs between how long it takes to check tickets per coach/train and how long a time is considered to be sufficient.

    There are certain semi-fast Southern 12-coach commuter services - very busy ones but not completely rammed - where it is, as a rough benchmark, comfortably possible to check 4 or 5 coaches, including railcards and photocards which people may not have to hand, between stops every 12 minutes or so. There are also services where you can get quite a lot done with gaps of just 3-5 minutes between stops, but that very much depends on dispatch positions.

    I wonder if some TOCs are having issues with frequent ticket sales slowing checks down drastically, or whether it is simply because a lot of off-peak long-distance travellers are infrequent users of those services and have lodged tickets in the bottom of their pockets, or perhaps have loads of queries. A tried-and-tested tactic which seems to work is to walk through an entire train asking if anyone needs tickets, and advising everyone else that they should have them ready, and then going back through to check as soon as possible. It sounds simple, but not everybody does it.

    The other issue I find is that everyone has a mental "boundary" of when to start or stop checking tickets in terms of time available before/after dispatch, and this is quite hard to improve on because it's a very personal thing. Maybe flexibility in tactics is really what needs to be emphasised, and this could improve effectiveness with checks lasting over 10mins or so in duration.

    Lastly, whilst some revenue staff and conductors seem to feel some shame in not checking a whole service, I don't think that is necessarily a problem. Visibility and spot-checks are something I emphasise when posting on here, and I really think those do work wonders. Sometimes doing spot-checks will lead to someone seeing a person with an Avantix coming, working out that they think they have nowhere to hide, and then sheepishly offering to buy a ticket. Occasionally. But it all helps!
     
  14. heart-of-wessex

    heart-of-wessex Established Member

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    I've had that on an ALR before, no ticket check from Euston to Mallaig!

    Did the seated sleeper, no one did a check at all, Fort William section was kind of a check, except the gripper just asked 'have you got a ticket?' I replied yes and was just about to get it out and he said 'no I dont want to see it, just asking if incase you need one. I'll be in the other coach getting some sleep.'

    No check on the 156 to Mallaig either
     
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