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Author Topic: Three new Rover tickets in GWR/SWR area. Great West Way Discoverer.  (Read 1117 times)
bignosemac
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« on: February 11, 2019, 11:04:49 am »

Seemingly quietly slipped onto the market in January 2019 are three new Rover tickets that cover London Paddington/Waterloo to Bristol by GWR and SWR, as well as participating bus services along those routes.

The three new Rover tickets are:

Great West Way Discoverer Global 7 Day Offering unlimited off peak rail travel (after 0930 Mon-Fri, anytime at weekends/bank holidays) between London Paddington/Waterloo and Bristol Temple Meads for 7 consecutive days. On the routes via Didcot, Newbury and Salisbury. grahame will be pleased to hear its also valid through Melksham! Validity also extends to Frome. Also valid on selected bus routes along those rail lines including all First West of England bus services.

Cost is £239.00 with an approximately 10% discount for Railcard holders. Railcard discount is less than the usual 1/3 off due to validity on buses. Usual half fare for children.



Great West Way Discoverer East 1 day or 7 day Offering unlimited off peak travel (as above) between London Paddington and Swindon via Didcot, London Paddington and Westbury via Newbury, and between London Waterloo and Westbury via Salisbury. Again there is validity of selected bus services in the area covered by those rail lines.

Cost is £69.00 for the 1 day flavour, and £159.00 for the 7 consecutive day flavour. Railcard and child discounts as above.



Great West Way Discoverer West 1 day or 7 day Offering unlimited off peak rail travel (as above) between Hungerford/Swindon/Salisbury/Frome and Bristol Temple Meads. Again, Melksham is included. Validity on selected bus routes in the area covered, including all First West of England services.

Cost is £24.00 for the one day flavour and £69.00 for the 7 consecutive day flavour. Discounts as above.



Much more information, including maps, lists of valid bus services, station lists etc, can be found at the following links:

Global: http://www.railrover.org/pages/great-west-way-discoverer-global7day.html
East: http://www.railrover.org/pages/great-west-way-discoverer-east.html
West: http://www.railrover.org/pages/great-west-way-discoverer-west.html

There is also an associated 'Great West Way' website full of ideas and information on what can be seen and done along the routes.
https://www.greatwestway.co.uk

« Last Edit: February 11, 2019, 11:30:41 am by bignosemac » Logged

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martyjon
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« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2019, 11:21:38 am »

Is that right Huh? surely the second should be WEST.
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bobm
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« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2019, 11:28:41 am »

Although both the GWR and SWR websites sell rover tickets on line - these have yet to be included.
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bignosemac
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« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2019, 11:31:40 am »

Is that right Huh? surely the second should be WEST.

Fixed that. Second one EAST, third one is WEST.
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TonyK
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« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2019, 03:41:40 pm »

Looks potentially useful!
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grahame
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« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2019, 11:10:19 pm »

Looks potentially useful!

Indeed ... I've been following the Great West Way quite closely / know what "it is".   Some of the choices of what's included and what's not look a bit odd to me - but then I'm sure there are reasons and it's very easy to criticise when I don't have background to the "whys"s and "wherefores".

The "Great West Way" is designed to help (or is funded by a government fund for) independent overseas travellers reach the wide range of places worth seeing, but away from the "Honey Pots" like Windsor Castle and Stonehenge - spread out the visitors for the general economy benefit of the corridor rather than having just a handful of places overcrowded taking the benefits without "spread"

Very interesting to note that - unlike other rover / ranger tickets that cover Paddington to Reading - the Thames branches are NOT included.  No Windsor!!  (No Marlow, No Henley).  It does not include the train too Oxford ... though you can get (on the Eastern ticket) to Oxford by bus from Reading or Swindon, to Windsor on the GreenLine Coach from Slough.  I would have thought it useful (and thinking for tourists) to have included Waterloo to Reading, and Reading to Basingstoke - certainly on the 7 day ticket.   But then that latter would mean including travel on Cross Country who are not part of the scheme.

Looking further west, Devizes can be reached from Swindon and Trowbridge on the tickets.  It can be reached from Bath in the evenings and Sundays only, and not from Salisbury or Pewsey (even though other services from the same operator are included on the ticket), and not from Chippenham (none of the services of the operator of that route are included. The tourist destination of Corsham can be reached on Sundays and in the evenings.  Both Marlborough and Avebury are included, but the short bus hop between them is not ... all in all a very interesting choice in Wiltshire

Looking further west again, the ticket takes you to Bristol Temple Meads - but only via Bath Spa.  As some services shift to running via Bristol Parkway, they're not included.   And you can reach places that, surely, tourists may want to see like Weston-super-mare and Avonmouth (and Nailsea) by bus but not by train.

If excellent combined timetables and an app with a journey planner are produced and the whole thing is thoroughly marketed, it may well be  a runaway success in its intended market.   If the information is not joined up, clear, and available in multiple languages, I see risks.   I hope a risk assessment has been done and solutions / mitigations planned.
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grahame
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« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2019, 12:54:36 pm »

From the Great West Way web site

https://www.greatwestway.co.uk/explore/rail/great-west-way-discoverer-ticket


Quote
GREAT WEST WAY DISCOVERER TICKET
Available from January 2019 

Relax and journey along the Great West Way on the bus and rail network using the Great West Way Discoverer ticket.   The Great West Way Discoverer ticket makes travelling the route easy and hassle free. It includes unlimited off-peak train travel from London Paddington/Waterloo along the route to Bristol Temple Meads via Reading and or Basingstoke routes with options to branch off towards Oxford and Kemble. It also includes unlimited travel on the bus services along the route. Choose from a one, three day or week-long ticket to enjoy your Great West Way adventure.

Great West Way Discoverer Ticket will be available on GWR.com, in GWR stations and via GWR call centre.

If you’re travelling from overseas International tickets will be available online in early 2019. In advance of their release, please contact salesenquiries@gwr.com.
o    The international ticket is modelled on the Britrail Pass
o    Can be purchased up to 7 days prior travel
o    Can only be purchased from outside the UK
o    Ticket holders need to carry a non-UK ID.

For more information on travelling the Great West Way, take a look at our rail and bus pages for handy ideas and tips.

The description here seems to offer much more flexibility than the rail rover site (e.g. Kemble, 3 day tickets, implication of most / all bus services and trains to Oxford) but then it suggests that there's a special / different deal available for overseas visitors ...
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« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2019, 02:55:52 pm »

Travel by Driving, Public Transport, Walking. No cycling? Not a good start.
Their cycling options are not the same thing.
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grahame
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« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2019, 07:13:46 pm »

I am delighted to report further details and background received (thank you  Wink ) ... feeling better informed, more to follow.
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bignosemac
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« Reply #9 on: February 26, 2019, 01:32:40 pm »

Awaiting confirmation of further info.
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« Reply #10 on: February 26, 2019, 01:43:56 pm »

The NRE site specifically mentions the TV branches within the Global version, but not for the EAst version. Are you certain about the East including them?
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grahame
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« Reply #11 on: February 26, 2019, 01:47:22 pm »

Awaiting confirmation of further info.

On the train on my way back home from Swindon from a really useful meeting on this subject.  Notes inscribed on a piece of parchment in my bag; writing up will probably be tomorrow due to the rapid-fire series of meetings yesterday and today (two further things in my diary before I sleep tonight, and other writeup to do too!)

The NRE site specifically mentions the TV branches within the Global version, but not for the EAst version. Are you certain about the East including them?

Current information online is - err - not as accurate as it should be.  I will write up (see above) and should me much closer to totally correct - it WILL be posted "E&OE" and I will the also have it checked.
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bignosemac
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« Reply #12 on: February 26, 2019, 01:53:57 pm »

I jumped the gun a bit. Apologies to all. Embarrassed
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grahame
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« Reply #13 on: February 28, 2019, 07:25:36 am »

I jumped the gun a bit. Apologies to all. Embarrassed

Love the excitement ...  Grin. ... here's the text, checked between the two of us who met with GWR on Tuesday, and now that we think we have it sorted, to be re-checked by them.   So posted here "Errors and Omissions Excepted" and subject to update over the next few days.  Checked, confirmed to look in order by GWR's technical folks who set this up. Still E&OE just in case we all have an identical blind spot  Grin



Area and times  of validity - Great West Way Global ticket

UK versions - 7 day, valid on services departing where you join them after 09:30, and time holiday and weekends
Codes I544 on internal systems.  Code GG7 on ticket machines

International version - 3 and 7 day, no time restrictions. Purchase from non-UK address prior to UK arrival.

Main route ...
* London Paddington - Slough - Maidenhead - Twyford - Reading - Didcot - Swindon - Bath - Bristol Temple Meads.
and off there ...
* Slough - Windsor and Eton Central
* Maidenhead - Marlow
* Twyford - Henley on Thames
* Reading - Newbury - Bedwyn - Westbury
* Reading - London (Waterloo)
* Swindon - Bristol Parkway - Bristol Temple Meads
* Chippenham - Westbury
* Bath Spa - Westbury - Salisbury - Basingstoke - London Waterloo

(Notable) rail exclusions ...
- West Ealing to Greenford
- Services to Heathrow
- Reading to Basingstoke
- Didcot to Oxford. (not valid on Reading to Oxford services that bypass Didcot either)
- Severn Beach line
- Reading to(wards) Gatwick

Ticket agreement in SWR and GWR - and NOT Cross Country (that's why Oxford and Reading- Basingstoke are exluded) nor TfL; all valid at all intermediate stations, though unclear (sorry, I might have been told) about places like Acton Main Line where the only GWR service call is (?) once a day now.

Bus routes (I have capitalised railway stations for connections in these lists)

All Reading Buses services excluding Greenwave, Kennections, Football and special events - so that includes
* Green line services 702 and 703 - Heathrow, SLOUGH Station (for rail connection), Windsor and Legoland
* 7 - READING to FLEET

Thames Travel:
* X38, X39, X40 and River Rapids services - READING, HENLEY, Wallingford, Oxford
* X2 and X32 - Wantage to DIDCOT to Oxford

Salisbury Reds - specifically the following:
* X5 - SALISBURY, Amesbury, PEWSEY, Marlborough, SWINDON

Stagecoach West - specifically the following:
* 49 TransWilts Express - SWINDON, Avebury, Devizes, TROWBRIDGE
* 55 - SWINDON - Royal Wootton BasettCalne - CHIPPENHAM
* S6 - SWINDON - Farringdon - Oxford
* 80/81 - SWINDON - Marlborough

All First West of England Services excluding Bristol Airport Services - so that includes:
* D2 - BATH SPA - Frome
* D1 - BATH SPA - SALISBURY
* D3 - BATH SPA - MELKSHAM (and evening and Sunday services to Devizes)
* X31 - BATH SPA - Corsham - Chippenham (EVENING and SUNDAY Only)
* BATH SPA local buses
* 376 - BRISTOL - Wells
* BRISTOL to Clifton, Avonmouth, Cribb's Causeway, Portishead, Clevedon, Weston Super Mare
(this is just a small selection of the First West of England network)

(Notable) bus exclusions even though they may be run by the companies above
- Railair link from Reading to Heathrow (though railcard discount offered to holders of Great West Way tickts
- Salisbury to Devizes
- Pewsey to Devizes
- Marlborough to Avebury
- Salisbury to Stonehenge
- Swindon to Cirencester
- Chippenham to Malmesbury
- Bath to Devizes (Monday to Saturday, Daytime - allowed evening and Sunday)
- Bath to Chippenham (Monday to Saturday, Daytime - allowed evening and Sunday)
- Bedwyn to Marlborough

VARIENT - Great West Way (East) Ticket
UK, 1 or 7 days.

Codes I544 on internal systems.  Code GWE and GE7 on ticket machines

Rail:
* London to SWINDON
* London to WESTBURY via Newbury
* London to WESTBURY via Salisbury
* Intermediate stations and branches as on the Global ticket

Buses:
* As on the global ticket as far west as the X5 Swindon via Pewsey to Salisbury (inclusive)

VARIENT - Great West Way (West) Ticket
UK, 1 or 7 days.


* SWINDON to Bristol Temple Meads (via Bath Spa or Bristol Parkway)
* SALISBURY to Bath Spa and Bristol Temple Meads
* PEWSEY to Westbury (not Hungerford as shown on some maps)
* Also includes Chippenham to Trowbridge via Melksham

Buses:
* As on the global ticket as far east as the X5 Swindon via Pewsey to Salisbury (inclusive)

GENERAL COMMENTS

There is - in my view - a need to provide strong map and timetable information for users of these tickets. There is a contracted option with Visit Wiltshire to get this done for international launch next month.

There are some surprises in the non-availability of some rail routes, most of which have been considered but not been included because of extra cost / extra partner / contractual reasons.

Where specific services only are included from a bus operator, other services from the same operator have not been included for commercial (cost) reasons, or because they run less than hourly which is considered too infrequent for the overseas leisure markets.

There were some errors and omissions in previous web pages and reports; hopefully corrected here (I have done my best). Of particular note - there is nothing in the east product that's not in the global one, and there's nothing in the west product that's not in the global one.

Reading buses and First West of England run services run beyond the rail area covered by the tickets - and so you have the somewhat surprising situation that you can reach places like Heathrow, Oxford, Frome, Clifton Down, Avonmouth and Weston-super-mare by bus but not by train.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2019, 11:52:17 am by grahame » Logged

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« Reply #14 on: February 28, 2019, 09:31:56 am »

A couple of typos:

Quote
none-UK
Quote
none-availability

and is the Falcon (Bristol - Plymouth) bus service run by First West of England?
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