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Author Topic: First off-peak tickets from Paddington to Bristol?  (Read 288 times)
Marlburian
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« on: June 30, 2022, 04:07:09 pm »

Today a friend visited me in Tilehurst, travelling from London Paddington. Just before 1000 she texted me to say that she was on the 1002 to Bristol, then a couple of minutes later texted again to say that she'd heard an on-board announcement that off-peak tickets weren't valid, so she switched to a 1004 service to somewhere else.

Checking the National Rail website, I see that a single ticket to Bristol up to and including 0922 is £119.40, on the 0932 and 1002 it's £54.80 "off-peak" and on the 1032 it drops to £38.70.

I've never been knowledgeable about morning off-peak fares from Paddington, but what, if anything, am I missing here?  Or could it be that my friend misheard? (She's Polish, on a four-day visit to London, but pre-Lockdown she lived in the Capital for 20 years and has good English.)
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stuving
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« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2022, 05:28:47 pm »

Ticket restrictions can vary depending not just on what sort of off-peak ticket it is, but also on the destination. So any announcement of that kind is likely to mislead. Then there's the sheer complexity of the small print.

Off-peak returns to Tilehurst come in to flavours: day and period.
The period return is valid from 9:30. (FP)
The day return is valid from earlier, but you mustn't change trains at Reading before 10:00. (J9)

Off-peak returns to Bristol also come in two flavours, but they are period and super
The period return is valid from 9:17, and 9:40 from Reading. (YC)
The super off-peak return is valid only after 10:10. (YU)

Maybe the announcement was about that super off-peak one?
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Marlburian
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« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2022, 05:43:43 pm »

Stuving, thanks for that exposition. If I wasn't aware of those nuances (not that I've ever travelled west from Paddington in the morning), what hope does an occasional visitor to England have? (Though I suspect that she was busy on her phone whilst waiting for the train to leave, so might not have picked up on "super" had it featured in the announcement.)
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