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Author Topic: Priority Boarding Trial at Paddington - August 2021  (Read 3721 times)
bobm
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« on: August 05, 2021, 08:12:07 pm »

From GWR (Great Western Railway) Website

"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.



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."
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Lee
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« Reply #1 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...
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I have been watching The Damned United, which is a lesson relevant for today.
ChrisB
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« Reply #2 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
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Marlburian
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« Reply #3 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?
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bobm
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« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2021, 09:53:20 pm »

I suspect they will be guided to the train before it appears on the departure screens.
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Lee
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« Reply #5 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 (Freedom of Information) 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  Grin
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REVUpminster
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« Reply #6 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.
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broadgage
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« Reply #7 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 (Great Western Railway) 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.
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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 (Diesel Multiple Unit) is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
TaplowGreen
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« Reply #8 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?  Wink
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IndustryInsider
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« Reply #9 on: August 06, 2021, 09:08:06 am »

It’s a trial - perhaps it’ll work, perhaps it won’t.  And AIUI (as I understand it) 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.
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Reading General
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« Reply #10 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.
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Bob_Blakey
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« Reply #11 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 (Great Western Railway) would be so unprofessional as to plonk any of these 'priority' passengers in reserved seats.
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #12 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 (Great Western Railway) 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?
« Last Edit: August 06, 2021, 10:09:55 am by TaplowGreen » Logged
Sulis John
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« Reply #13 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!
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Bmblbzzz
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« Reply #14 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.
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