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All across the Great Western territory => Across the West => Topic started by: bobm on August 05, 2021, 08:12:07 pm



Title: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: bobm on August 05, 2021, 08:12:07 pm
From GWR Website (https://www.gwr.com/travelling-with-us/family-travel/priority-boarding)

"Stations are often busy places. And sometimes, you need a little bit more time or some help to get everyone on board.

That’s why we’re running a weekday priority boarding trial at London Paddington on 20 trains a day to some of our most popular destinations.

(http://www.mbob.co.uk/rforum/padpri.jpg)

How it works
All you need to do is book a slot in advance up to 6pm on the day before you travel.

Send us a text through WhatsApp on 07890 608043 and let us know:

what train you’re catching (it’s best to reserve your seats in advance)
how many adults and children in your group
any special requirements (like large buggies etc)
We’ll get back to you as soon as we can and let you know if we have any slots free.

When you arrive, you’ll find us on the main concourse near the ticket office - look out for the large ‘Priority boarding’ flags. One of our friendly team will then help get everyone safely on board. Easy-peasy."


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Lee on August 05, 2021, 08:18:42 pm
Whenever I hear those promoting such schemes use the phrase "easy-peasy", I cant help but feel slightly queasy...


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: ChrisB on August 05, 2021, 08:48:36 pm
Assuming this including early-boarding, it’ll piss off those non qualifying as all the table seating will go first


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Marlburian on August 05, 2021, 09:26:32 pm
Scope for confusion among those who don't know about it - and what do they do as the Priority Boarders get on their trains first. Are they held back, and how?


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: bobm on August 05, 2021, 09:53:20 pm
I suspect they will be guided to the train before it appears on the departure screens.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Lee on August 05, 2021, 10:42:37 pm
On a completely unrelated note, back when I was a political advisor, there used to be an expression called a "Blair FOI Moment". This was when you implemented a policy that sounded like the best thing since sliced bread in theory, but turned out to be an absolute ducking nightmare in practice.

As Tony Blair himself once put it - "For political leaders, it's like saying to someone who is hitting you over the head with a stick, 'Hey, try this instead', and handing them a mallet."

But anyway, I digress. Back to Priority Boarding  ;D


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: REVUpminster on August 06, 2021, 07:20:32 am
My usual return train is 1C92 and OpenTrains usually gives me priority boarding with the platform number before it appears on indicator boards.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: broadgage on August 06, 2021, 08:54:17 am
This sounds to me like another layer of complication and things to go wrong.
Book a seat in the usual way, AND "book a slot" by the previous evening.

Also sounds like a way to ensure that ordinary fare payers are less likely to get a seat, these having been taken by those with "priority boarding"

A cynic might suspect that this is something to do with the new shorter trains.

Customer "despite paying the full open fare, and booking a seat, and arriving in good time, I was unable to obtain a seat on the XX-YY service and had to stand"

GWR Customer services "I am sorry to hear that you experienced crowding on a recent journey. Our services are increasingly busy, and we recommend that you use our new priority boarding service"

And of course there will be cases of passengers unable to board an evening service due to half length trains services being busy at holiday times. At present such customers might be entitled to compensation or road transport.
In future they could be told "you should have used our priority boarding service"

Any criticism of new shorter trains will no doubt be considered "broadgage bingo" rather than as valid criticism of what is rapidly becoming a failed project.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: TaplowGreen on August 06, 2021, 09:05:40 am


A cynic might suspect that this is something to do with the new shorter trains.




Know ye of such a person Broadgage?  ;)


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: IndustryInsider on August 06, 2021, 09:08:06 am
It’s a trial - perhaps it’ll work, perhaps it won’t.  And AIUI you don’t have to have a reservation, you just need to know which train you are intending to travel on by the previous evening.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Reading General on August 06, 2021, 09:22:37 am
Competition in every level of our lives. Pit passengers against each other with special treatment. Might work on the buses, it seems to come from the US business school of thinking, and modern management love that sort of thing.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Bob_Blakey on August 06, 2021, 09:46:07 am
From my perspective I think this would be irrelevant - I never travel from Paddington without a seat reservation and have never not been able to occupy said reserved place. I don't believe GWR would be so unprofessional as to plonk any of these 'priority' passengers in reserved seats.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: TaplowGreen on August 06, 2021, 09:53:00 am
From my perspective I think this would be irrelevant - I never travel from Paddington without a seat reservation and have never not been able to occupy said reserved place. I don't believe GWR would be so unprofessional as to plonk any of these 'priority' passengers in reserved seats.

.......but if they "plonk" themselves in reserved seats (for example around a table as others have suggested), will GWR be sufficiently professional to make them move when those reservation holders board?


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Sulis John on August 06, 2021, 10:31:53 am
Interesting to know how it works if the train on the other side of a platform has a similar departure time and is not one of the priority boarding trains (particularly if it would also be a valid option for where you're going) .
At least, unlike E***jet, they are making it clear that the number of slots for this service is limited. I've always wondered what would happen at the departure gate on the day that the entire  flight has booked (and paid for) Speedy Boarding!


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Bmblbzzz on August 06, 2021, 10:32:37 am
Competition in every level of our lives. Pit passengers against each other with special treatment.
That's what it sounds like to me too.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: a-driver on August 06, 2021, 10:55:30 am
Isn’t this just an extension to the existing passenger assist scheme just using GWR staff?

I assume the Customer Ambassadors have highlighted a particular problem that causes a delay and they’ve now got this scheme so those who need assistance can be identified before arriving at the station rather than picking them up when they’re confused, lost on the platform or struggling with the kitchen sink!


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: stuving on August 06, 2021, 11:03:54 am
Competition in every level of our lives. Pit passengers against each other with special treatment.
That's what it sounds like to me too.

Really? So who do you think it is aimed at, or is likely to take it up?

It sounds to me like it's intended as a level of help below that of Passenger Assist, for those who can't cope with the traditional boarding scramble unleashed when a train goes up on the screens. So, if anything, it's avoiding competitive behaviour!

It copies what airlines do, rather more easily as no pre-booking is needed when you're all in the lounge and can be invited to board first if with children, or old or otherwise slow etc.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: broadgage on August 06, 2021, 01:11:36 pm
From my perspective I think this would be irrelevant - I never travel from Paddington without a seat reservation and have never not been able to occupy said reserved place. I don't believe GWR would be so unprofessional as to plonk any of these 'priority' passengers in reserved seats.

There are no reservations on a half length train.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: infoman on August 06, 2021, 07:45:12 pm
Its seems a good idea,but a lot of those services seem to be W-of-E services,and they are based at the west of England depots.

If they arrive late,maybe after departure imagine the free for all and no seat reservations applied.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: IndustryInsider on August 06, 2021, 08:19:40 pm
If they arrive late,maybe after departure imagine the free for all and no seat reservations applied.

One benefit of the electronic reservations is that they load and display in around 30 seconds when requested by the driver or TM.  On the arriving service, if either of them is clued up and feeling helpful to their colleagues, then they can load the reservations upon arrival.

Much quicker than the paper system.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: broadgage on August 07, 2021, 08:17:11 pm
Assuming this including early-boarding, it’ll piss off those non qualifying as all the table seating will go first

Surely not! When I suggested that table seats were inadequate for an inter city train, several respected members replied that table seating was "ample" or "better than most trains" and even that many passengers preferred the bus unidirectional seats.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: TonyK on August 07, 2021, 09:33:26 pm
Interesting to know how it works if the train on the other side of a platform has a similar departure time and is not one of the priority boarding trains (particularly if it would also be a valid option for where you're going) .
At least, unlike E***jet, they are making it clear that the number of slots for this service is limited. I've always wondered what would happen at the departure gate on the day that the entire  flight has booked (and paid for) Speedy Boarding!

I never even consider paying extra for priority boarding, when I have  a boarding card with a seat number. During Easyjet's brief experiment with not having seats allocated, I flew back from a chaotic Venice Marco Polo airport. The speedy boarding customers were led through to the bus. We were then checked in, and sent to the same bus, but standing rather than sitting. I think the speedy boarders were last to get on, and they weren't happy. You could tell.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Richard Fairhurst on August 07, 2021, 10:54:55 pm
Assuming this including early-boarding, it’ll piss off those non qualifying as all the table seating will go first

Absolutely. It effectively means there are two levels of reservations: reserved seats, reserved boarding, plus of course no reservations at all. I give it 0 minutes until someone comes up and says "but I have this reservation, why can't I board now"?

But then the railway industry does sometimes have a magnificent ability to over-complicate things.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: broadgage on August 07, 2021, 11:05:06 pm
No, four levels.
1) Reserved seat but no priority boarding.
2) Priority boarding but no reserved seat.
3) Reserved seat and priority boarding.
4)Nothing.

And even if this works, to a degree, then I foresee priority boarding customers taking seats that have been booked by ordinary fare payers.
"But I am a priority customer and can sit where I want. And anyway I NEED THIS seat because of my giant baby carriage/excess luggage/multiple children."


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: grahame on August 08, 2021, 06:20:55 am
No, four levels.
1) Reserved seat but no priority boarding.
2) Priority boarding but no reserved seat.
3) Reserved seat and priority boarding.
4)Nothing.

And even if this works, to a degree, then I foresee priority boarding customers taking seats that have been booked by ordinary fare payers.
"But I am a priority customer and can sit where I want. And anyway I NEED THIS seat because of my giant baby carriage/excess luggage/multiple children."

Taking an overall view, I can recall leaving London for Swindon/Chippenham/Melksham on the first train that wasn't at anytime fares on a hot afternoon.  Quite a time ago as the train was an HST.  Things were happening that lead to the platform of this and other trains being called late, and in the scramble all the fit (looking) people got all the seats, leaving old slower movers, people with children and a pregnant woman or two crammed into the lobby.

It got better at Reading when a lot of the seated people got up and left the train, and the situation was "corrected" from Didcot, from where there were seats do all.

As an observer from the community (and not as a fit young person but tired after a hard day in the office), I do feel we should have been able to do better for those amongst us who needed seats.  Sunflower lanyards were really useful (seem to be few bothering now), and "nervous dog" leads help(ed) us identify people/animals who need extra space, and I am aware of "baby on board" badges.  Is there any sort of answer in there, or would fit "Reading (wo)man" still grab the seats ahead of pregnant Bath (wo)man?


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: TaplowGreen on August 08, 2021, 08:24:11 am
No, four levels.
1) Reserved seat but no priority boarding.
2) Priority boarding but no reserved seat.
3) Reserved seat and priority boarding.
4)Nothing.

And even if this works, to a degree, then I foresee priority boarding customers taking seats that have been booked by ordinary fare payers.
"But I am a priority customer and can sit where I want. And anyway I NEED THIS seat because of my giant baby carriage/excess luggage/multiple children."


As an observer from the community (and not as a fit young person but tired after a hard day in the office), I do feel we should have been able to do better for those amongst us who needed seats.  Sunflower lanyards were really useful (seem to be few bothering now), and "nervous dog" leads help(ed) us identify people/animals who need extra space, and I am aware of "baby on board" badges.  Is there any sort of answer in there, or would fit "Reading (wo)man" still grab the seats ahead of pregnant Bath (wo)man?

Courtesy?

Not a fashionable view these days I guess but I was brought up to step back/give up my seat for someone who needed it more than me, if memory serves there used to be signs on public transport reminding people..............I'm not sure if that would extend to a pregnant man from Bath however! 

(Although I get the concept of pregnant men is more fashionable in some quarters than the aforementioned courtesy these days!)  :)


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Lee on August 08, 2021, 10:31:49 am
No, four levels.
1) Reserved seat but no priority boarding.
2) Priority boarding but no reserved seat.
3) Reserved seat and priority boarding.
4)Nothing.

And even if this works, to a degree, then I foresee priority boarding customers taking seats that have been booked by ordinary fare payers.
"But I am a priority customer and can sit where I want. And anyway I NEED THIS seat because of my giant baby carriage/excess luggage/multiple children."


As an observer from the community (and not as a fit young person but tired after a hard day in the office), I do feel we should have been able to do better for those amongst us who needed seats.  Sunflower lanyards were really useful (seem to be few bothering now), and "nervous dog" leads help(ed) us identify people/animals who need extra space, and I am aware of "baby on board" badges.  Is there any sort of answer in there, or would fit "Reading (wo)man" still grab the seats ahead of pregnant Bath (wo)man?

Courtesy?

Not a fashionable view these days I guess but I was brought up to step back/give up my seat for someone who needed it more than me, if memory serves there used to be signs on public transport reminding people..............I'm not sure if that would extend to a pregnant man from Bath however! 

(Although I get the concept of pregnant men is more fashionable in some quarters than the aforementioned courtesy these days!)  :)

He's always been forward-thinking has grahame  ;D - And as 2019 taught us, sometimes you cant see huge changes in the way the world works even 6 months ahead!


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Bmblbzzz on August 08, 2021, 03:44:43 pm
Competition in every level of our lives. Pit passengers against each other with special treatment.
That's what it sounds like to me too.

Really? So who do you think it is aimed at, or is likely to take it up?
I think the people likely to take it up are those who are organized, future oriented, willing and able to commit to fixed plans in advance: as opposed to those who are spontaneous, present or past oriented, and value flexibility over certainties.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: TonyK on August 08, 2021, 04:37:18 pm

Not a fashionable view these days I guess but I was brought up to step back/give up my seat for someone who needed it more than me

I still do it by force of habit, even though I am now that person who needs it more than me.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: broadgage on August 08, 2021, 05:26:06 pm
I always used to give up my seat on a bus or local train, for someone less able than myself.

Not perhaps on an intercity train for which I have paid the full open fare and booked a seat. I appreciate that this is double standards, but on the 19-03 from Paddington there were ALLWAYS standees.

And saying that I should have given up my seat, was in effect saying saying that I should NEVER sit  on that train, since there would always be someone standing.

All this talk of priority boarding, of sunflower lanyards, of "baby on board" badges, and no doubt other schemes is all trying very hard not to admit that there is an underlying problem with new shorter trains.
Reduced passenger numbers during the pandemic hid this problem for well over a year, but passengers are now returning.
Staff shortages whether pandemic related or otherwise, also hid the problem for some time.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: IndustryInsider on August 09, 2021, 11:57:57 am
All this talk of priority boarding, of sunflower lanyards, of "baby on board" badges, and no doubt other schemes is all trying very hard not to admit that there is an underlying problem with new shorter trains.

I doubt anyone on here is surprised you've drawn that conclusion.

But a few facts to counter your suppositions:

1)  19 of the 20 trains selected for the trial are booked for either 9 or 10 car DMUs, which of course have around 20% more seats than the previous DMUs that operated them.
2)  Those 19 are all allocated 9 or 10-car trains as planned today.  It is of course possible that some unplanned shortforms will happen on occasions, but not today at least.
3)  The trial covers two trains per hour, at half hourly intervals, and includes all of the trains from Paddington to the West of England bar one between 09:04 and 19:04, with additional Bristol trains on the hours when there is no second departure to the WoE (at 11:32, 13:32 and 15:32).  I expect those Bristol trains have been chosen because it would be difficult for the team doing the trial to deal with departures that were not evenly spaced every 30 minutes or so, and not because the 13:32 to Bristol is a particularly busy train.  The slightly odd omission from the list is the 17:36 to Plymouth, also booked for a 9-car.
4)  The one train booked for a 5-car half-length train is the 11:32 Paddington to Bristol service.  That's currently running to Bristol Parkway rather than Temple Meads, so I will check to see what formation it is booked for when it resumes to the normal timetable.

Oh, and I find sunflower lanyards very useful in giving me a visual alert that a passenger might need more assistance than is typically the case.  It's a national scheme, not specific to the railways, and certainly not dreamt up by GWR to try to cover up for half-length trains.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: broadgage on August 09, 2021, 04:54:35 pm
I am well aware that almost all of the trains in the priority boarding scheme are BOOKED to be full length, but being booked to be full length is not the same as actually being full length.
On at least one recent day, the 18-04 was half length, and that tends to be a very busy train.

It only takes one vociferous disabled passenger to be left behind due to crowding, to result in considerable adverse publicity.

"Priority boarding" diverts attention from the underlying fact that for various reasons, that the new trains are not reliably full length.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: IndustryInsider on August 09, 2021, 06:05:00 pm
Priority boarding for disabled passengers has been available for decades, Broadgage.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: broadgage on August 09, 2021, 08:21:45 pm
Priority boarding for disabled passengers has been available for decades, Broadgage.

I know, but this scheme seems to be something different, on a larger scale ? or being more actively encouraged ? Or perhaps not just for the disabled but also for oversized baby carriages, excessive luggage, and multiple children.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Bmblbzzz on August 09, 2021, 09:37:26 pm
I did think the same but the scheme for disabled passengers is called (at least officially) Passenger Assist.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: IndustryInsider on August 09, 2021, 09:51:17 pm
Priority boarding for disabled passengers has been available for decades, Broadgage.

I know, but this scheme seems to be something different, on a larger scale ? or being more actively encouraged ? Or perhaps not just for the disabled but also for oversized baby carriages, excessive luggage, and multiple children.
Yes, it’s pretty clear from what I can see.  It’s for those people who might otherwise struggle a little.  

After all, if you have luggage, babies, kids or other things that might slow you down then if you are able to board early and beat the rush of fully able and/or unencumbered passengers, then it will likely be a far less stressful experience for you.

It’s also more likely you’ll be able to properly stow you luggage, fold the baby carriage and so on.

Or perhaps you have a temporary issue such as a leg in plaster.  Or the last time you travelled you had somebody who’d beaten you to your reserved seat who refused to move.  Or you just generally suffer from anxiety and this will help relieve those worries.

Plenty of scenarios…all of which benefit from having an easier system that the current assisted travel arrangements.

I’m surprised at all the negativity.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: broadgage on August 09, 2021, 10:14:22 pm
In my case, the principle reason for my negativity is that I fear that priority boarding will make it harder for ordinary fare payers to get a seat.
I consider it probable that some priority customers will take up more seats than they have paid for, for example young children travelling free but taking up a seat. Baby carriage taking up reserved cycle space. Luggage on seats etc.etc.
And of course the already minimal first class being taken up by a large entourage one of whom is in a wheelchair.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Lee on August 09, 2021, 10:32:10 pm
I’m surprised at all the negativity.

That will at least in part stem from how it looks that GWR appear to have put introducing a brand new scheme like this on its "priority list", ahead of sorting out the many other existing problems that currently impact its customers on a daily basis first.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: PhilWakely on August 09, 2021, 10:37:56 pm
I’m surprised at all the negativity.

That will at least in part stem from how it looks that GWR appear to have put introducing a brand new scheme like this on its "priority list", ahead of sorting out the many other existing problems that currently impact its customers on a daily basis first.

Before introducing Priority Boarding on services to the South West, GWR should first enforce the Reading 'pick up only' rule on all Friday afternoon services to Plymouth and Penzance.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: IndustryInsider on August 09, 2021, 11:11:52 pm
How much of a problem is that now there’s hardly any commuters?


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: TonyK on August 10, 2021, 08:27:22 am
Before introducing Priority Boarding on services to the South West, GWR should first enforce the Reading 'pick up only' rule on all Friday afternoon services to Plymouth and Penzance.

I am sure they will welcome any workable ideas on how to do that.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: ChrisB on August 10, 2021, 08:49:30 am
It’s workable with a modicum of platform planning and manpower. It’s doable if they actually wanted to enforce it.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Reading General on August 10, 2021, 09:21:37 am
Can barriers at London Paddington not be set to only let particular tickets through? I guess shared platforms is a problem but with some planning for particular trains surely this would be possible.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: ChrisB on August 10, 2021, 10:22:53 am
Only for timings. If your ticket is otherwise valid for travel, but just not on that particular train, the barriers will operate. There’sca limit to the info that a mag strip on a paper ticket can carry.

So the answer would be to use unbarriered platfotms 8 & 9 and create an access that can be manually controlled as & when. And then to manually check tickets when necessary. They do this at Euston. But it takes willingness & manpower.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Marlburian on August 10, 2021, 11:06:04 am
Before introducing Priority Boarding on services to the South West, GWR should first enforce the Reading 'pick up only' rule on all Friday afternoon services to Plymouth and Penzance.

Someone once told me the reason for the "pick up only" rule, but could someone please remind me?


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: ChrisB on August 10, 2021, 11:09:05 am
To prevent Reading commuters from taking all the seats! Leaving them available to the longer distance customers


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Bmblbzzz on August 10, 2021, 12:10:28 pm
Only for timings. If your ticket is otherwise valid for travel, but just not on that particular train, the barriers will operate. There’sca limit to the info that a mag strip on a paper ticket can carry.
But a QR code, which seems to be replacing the magnetic strip, can carry far more. Whether it is used in this way I don't know but I'm sure the potential is there if it should be wanted in the future.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: ChrisB on August 10, 2021, 12:21:14 pm
But then you would need to remove paper tickets.....and have barriers for each platform.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Lee on August 10, 2021, 12:28:04 pm
Only for timings. If your ticket is otherwise valid for travel, but just not on that particular train, the barriers will operate. There’sca limit to the info that a mag strip on a paper ticket can carry.
But a QR code, which seems to be replacing the magnetic strip, can carry far more. Whether it is used in this way I don't know but I'm sure the potential is there if it should be wanted in the future.

Over here, in the recent major refurbishment of Rennes station, all the ticket barriers were converted to scan QR codes, which are printed on all of our tickets.

Rennes is our Brittany rail network's flagship station - being the regional capital - and currently the only one of our stations to feature ticket barriers. We are still very much advocates of the "open stations" approach, with controls coming far more from the requirement to validate tickets in the on-platform "composter" machines before travel, along with frequent on board ticket checks.

As I've said elsewhere on the forum though, you can be expect to be very quickly challenged at a staffed station if you attempt to enter without a mask.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: ChrisB on August 10, 2021, 12:36:24 pm
But then you would need to remove paper tickets.....and have barriers for each platform.

*Some* paper tickets are being produced that contain the QR code - but I think it's from new ticket machines in booking offices & those used to mail out tickets - I've not yet seen any QR codes on tickets produced from the customer facing ticket machines yet, so a big upgrade to those is likely to be needed before all tickets contain a QR code.

But you'd still need to barrier each platform before train-specific rules could be implemented. Cheaper to man the platforms for the few trains that require specific rules.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: IndustryInsider on August 10, 2021, 12:57:47 pm
To prevent Reading commuters from taking all the seats! Leaving them available to the longer distance customers

I did ask earlier, but I'll try again.  Is this much of an issue any longer? 

There are only, at a guess, a third of Reading commuters using the train (probably less than that on a Friday), and also the number of longer distance passengers travelling on business has no doubt shrunk.  I'll have to try and take a close look at the 18:04 on a Friday when I next get chance.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: Bmblbzzz on August 10, 2021, 01:35:16 pm
I'm sure I've had paper (as distinct from card) tickets with QR codes bought on train. But I might be misremembering, it's been some time...


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: PhilWakely on August 10, 2021, 01:44:28 pm
Before introducing Priority Boarding on services to the South West, GWR should first enforce the Reading 'pick up only' rule on all Friday afternoon services to Plymouth and Penzance.

I am sure they will welcome any workable ideas on how to do that.

The simplest solution would be an announcement at Reading advising pax for the South West to board the next available service to Reading West. Put a number of Revenue Protection staff on the platform at Reading West and then announce on the train that 'for operational reasons' this train will not be stopping at Reading, but will stop at Reading West instead'.


Title: Re: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021
Post by: broadgage on August 26, 2021, 08:01:42 pm
Was priority boarding in use on the 18-04 from Paddington tonight ? (26/08 21)
If so did it work OK ?



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