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Author Topic: Waterloo-Reading, Reading-Paddington on cheap day return ticket  (Read 358 times)
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« on: April 30, 2022, 07:03:33 pm »

Would a cheap-day return ticket bought from a machine at Waterloo to travel to Reading (Tilehurst actually) be valid to go back to Paddington, possibly in the evening "rush hour"?

IIRC (if I recall/remember/read correctly) this used to be the case, but with so many changes in recent years ...

A Polish friend is visiting London for three days (seems a lot of travel for such a short time) and may be staying near Waterloo. So 80 minutes plus to Reading - whereas the National Rail timetable advises that it would be about 60 minutes via Paddington, including the Tube - and she may need to be near Paddington in the evening.

When she lived in England, she created several interesting experiences with her rail journeys, including being asleep on a Paddington train (next stop Taunton) when it called at Reading ... And her English has probably deteriorated over the past two years. So I need to be sure about the return ticket.
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« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2022, 08:42:38 pm »

There seems to be less chance of going wrong with a ticket to Tilehurst, which seems to be available only in the form "London Terminals; any permitted route".

A ticket to Reading has "any permitted" and "via Staines" options; not sure how easy it is to choose between them at a Waterloo ticket machine. Incidentally, neither include the underground.

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« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2022, 12:55:11 pm »

Thanks for that, Trowres. There are several other stories about this lady's train journeys and challenges with tickets; on one occasion I suggested that she exaggerate her Polishness in the event of her being challenged.

I recall a charming young Slovakian lady appealing to me for help with the Tilehurst ticket machine; luckily I was able to assist.

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« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2022, 03:34:12 pm »

Eventually my Polish friend's visit went well enough, after I'd twice explained that  many of the Waterloo-Reading services listed on the timetable went via the Bakerloo and Paddington. She caught the 0850 and would have made her connection at Reading on to the 1023 to Tilehurst, save that she'd realised that she'd only bought a ticket to Reading. I was waiting for her with the car at Tilehurst and sighed resignedly when she didn't get off, but then I got a WhatsApp message (delayed by nine minutes) that she was "on a taxi". Interesting the fare was about the average charged by various taxi-drivers pre-Covid.

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« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2022, 04:16:26 pm »

I spoke too soon. My Polish friend was able to change her airline ticket so she could fly back home today rather than tomorrow. Only there were no trains from Liverpool Street to Stansted, just a bus service. And there were no tickets available on the National Express bus service. She used to live in Stoke Newington up till about six years ago, so went to a minicab office there that she used to patronise. Her driver remembered her, her husband and her home address.

I've yet to hear whether she got to the airport in time, but I think this is a case of no news, good news.
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