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Author Topic: Effective fare changes resulting from timetable changes in December  (Read 2075 times)
grahame
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« Reply #15 on: October 03, 2019, 10:17:20 am »

For many of us who use trains at about that time (e.g. from Swindon) there will be incredulity that anyone boarding a London bound train between 07:00 and 09:00 would ever expect it to be anything other than a peak train. 

Indeed ... the historic differences from Network South East area (which includes Hereford via Evesham and Exeter via Axminster, but not Swindon) to areas outside, and the special cases / easements brought about by gaps in the timetable (up to 4 hours in places) have lead to some situations where those at stations with limited service have got some very attractive fares at the peak shoulder.  Logic suggests that with 76% of train times changing (GWR data) and gaps such as the 4 hours reduced to 2, some rethink of the special cases is appropriate.  Which is not to say it won't be a very serious issue to people who are regular users of the fare / time combos that have been attractive purely because there were no other available trains.
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ChrisB
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« Reply #16 on: October 03, 2019, 10:21:00 am »

Indeed ... the historic differences from Network South East area (which includes Hereford via Evesham and Exeter via Axminster, but not Swindon)

Small correction - I believe Hereford wasn't in the NSE area - Worcester Stations was the extremity of the NSE area at that end of the COtswold Line - hence the Network Card being valid only to those stations and not beyond.
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grahame
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« Reply #17 on: October 03, 2019, 10:44:58 am »

Indeed ... the historic differences from Network South East area (which includes Hereford via Evesham and Exeter via Axminster, but not Swindon)

Small correction - I believe Hereford wasn't in the NSE area - Worcester Stations was the extremity of the NSE area at that end of the COtswold Line - hence the Network Card being valid only to those stations and not beyond.

Thanks for that, Chris ... I must have got confused between the limits of NSE and the limits of working of class 165/166 which (in those days) were the Paddington suburban trains.  Wink
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Richard Fairhurst
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« Reply #18 on: October 03, 2019, 10:52:14 am »

For many of us who use trains at about that time (e.g. from Swindon) there will be incredulity that anyone boarding a London bound train between 07:00 and 09:00 would ever expect it to be anything other than a peak train. 

As alluded upthread, the sparse (and slower) service was historically the reason. The 08.30ish from Charlbury would get you into Paddington at 10.00, as would an 09.00 departure from Swindon. But whereas in Swindon you'd typically have to wait a few minutes for a subsequent IC125 on which off-peak tickets were valid, on the Cotswold Line it would typically have been well over an hour, and that for a Turbo.

To be honest, given the existence of the 09.10 - which was indeed the reason GWR gave us at a recent Charlbury Town Council meeting - I'm a lot less exercised by this than by the evening peak changes in 2015. Indeed, the 18.22 ex-Pad being retimed to 18.52 is good from a fares point of view. I suspect the bleeding to Chiltern will continue, though.
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didcotdean
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« Reply #19 on: October 03, 2019, 11:16:15 am »

Indeed ... the historic differences from Network South East area (which includes Hereford via Evesham and Exeter via Axminster, but not Swindon)

Small correction - I believe Hereford wasn't in the NSE area - Worcester Stations was the extremity of the NSE area at that end of the COtswold Line - hence the Network Card being valid only to those stations and not beyond.

Thanks for that, Chris ... I must have got confused between the limits of NSE and the limits of working of class 165/166 which (in those days) were the Paddington suburban trains.  Wink
The Network Card boundary was extended out from Oxford to Worcester on 28 May 1995. I think this was to reflect that through turbo services had become the norm by then.
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hoover50
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« Reply #20 on: October 17, 2019, 01:24:41 pm »

It seems the GWR timetable change in December is descending into a complete farce. Let's hope GWR sorts it out as lost of people in Pewsey are getting very angry about this.

...and it's not just Pewsey passengers getting angry. Looks like similar issues will affect passengers from Bedwyn, Hungerford, Kintbury, etc.
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #21 on: October 17, 2019, 05:49:26 pm »

Interesting view from a local;

Surprised?
Its obvious people use this service at these times who drive from the towns and cities to get the cheaper fare, it was never going to last for ever.
I frequently use Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury car parks and they are full daily of commuters who drive to the station to get the cheap London fares.
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broadgage
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« Reply #22 on: October 17, 2019, 11:05:56 pm »

Another success for my crystal ball ?
Years ago, before the IETs entered service, there was considerable speculation and discussion on these forums as to how these hugely expensive trains would be paid for.
Some forecast that substantial fare increases would be imposed in order to pay for the "improved" trains whilst other pointed to an official statement that stated that no increases in regulated fares would be imposed beyond the normal slightly above inflation rate.

I forecast that "headline" fare increases would indeed be modest and limited to only slightly above the inflation rate.
But I also forecast "hidden fare increases" would be achieved by careful adjustments to charge peak time fares for journeys previously considered to be off peak.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
bignosemac
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« Reply #23 on: October 17, 2019, 11:49:57 pm »

Interesting view from a local;

Surprised?
Its obvious people use this service at these times who drive from the towns and cities to get the cheaper fare, it was never going to last for ever.
I frequently use Bedwyn, Hungerford and Kintbury car parks and they are full daily of commuters who drive to the station to get the cheap London fares.


And yet, on the three occasions I've driven to Bedwyn in recent months, to catch an Off Peak service, I've had no problem parking. The hordes of commuters have kindly left a few spaces.
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IndustryInsider
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« Reply #24 on: October 18, 2019, 05:03:06 pm »

Another success for my crystal ball ?
Years ago, before the IETs entered service, there was considerable speculation and discussion on these forums as to how these hugely expensive trains would be paid for.
Some forecast that substantial fare increases would be imposed in order to pay for the "improved" trains whilst other pointed to an official statement that stated that no increases in regulated fares would be imposed beyond the normal slightly above inflation rate.

I forecast that "headline" fare increases would indeed be modest and limited to only slightly above the inflation rate.
But I also forecast "hidden fare increases" would be achieved by careful adjustments to charge peak time fares for journeys previously considered to be off peak.

I don't remember anyone disagreeing with that possibility - like car park charges it's an excellent way of getting in more money but not being in breach of any regulated fares rulings.

Tell me, do you predict the same will happen for other stations over time?

I ask, because checking the fares and restrictions for some of the biggest hitters on the GWR network, namely Cardiff Central, Bristol TM, Bath Spa and Swindon, there is a general improvement on when off-peak and super off-peak fares become valid from December when compared with now. 

Listing the arrival times (as they are more relevant than the departure times):
Cardiff:   First off-peak arrival is 10:37 now, and becomes 10:12 from December.  First super off-peak arrival is 12:00 now, and becomes 11:39 in December.
Bristol TM/Bath Spa/Swindon:  First off-peak arrival is 10:14 now, and becomes 10:07 from December.  First super off-peak arrival is 11:39 now, and becomes 11:37 in December.

I would have thought changes at those stations would have a much bigger impact than at smaller stations such as Charlbury, Pewsey and Bedwyn?
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grahame
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« Reply #25 on: Yesterday at 07:11:10 am »

Adding a further case to the list ...

At present, on a Monday to Friday, there are three through trains from London Paddington to Paignton.   Currently off Paddington at 07:03, 10:33 and 17:33, walk up singles cost 114.00 on the first and last trains (any time) and 56.60 on the 10:33, super off peak, journey time 3 hours 18 minutes.

From 16th December 2019, on a Monday to Friday, there will be three through trains from London Paddington to Paignton.   The will leave Paddington at 07:04, 09:37 and 17:37, walk up singles cost 114.00 on the first and last trains (any time) and 78.10 on the 09:37, off peak, journey time 3 hours 12 minutes.

On a (sample) date, 19th December, an advance fare is available on the 09:37 at 31.50.

Paignton (and the rest of Torbay) are one of the major visitor destinations for short breaks and conferences in the UK and I will (readers may argue) suggest that there's going to be a lot of people travelling there who have a strong preference for the through train (with all their luggage?).  Yes, walk up super off peak will still be available from London at (example) 11:04 with a change at Exeter St Davids.   The timing (09:37 v 10:33 v 11:04) probably makes very little difference to the passenger group I have describes, and the journey time (between 3 hours 10 and 3 hours 20 minutes) is probably not a key element in them choosing the train.  They would be unlikely to want to travel on the 07:04 (too early from London) or 17:37 (too late into Paignton)
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