Confused? You will be

Rashly, I’m planning a trip to London next week. Suicidally, I’m trying to travel down on Sunday – despite the edict of the Wee Frees that run Network Rail that None Shall Travel by train on the Sabbath (that is the reason, right?). Amazingly, it seems that I can still get a direct train from Carlisle to London because there’s a National Express from Aberdeen to Kings Cross which has decided to take the scenic route (I’m not sure I entirely believe in this train but the internet says it exists so it must be so). So far so normal in our land of the ‘integrated transport system’. But here’s where it gets wierd. If I try and book from Big Town to London, I can’t get the cheapie* Advance fare. If I try and book from Big Town to Palmer’s Green via London, I can. Exact same train, exact same time, but getting off it and then getting another train: 89 quid. Exact same train, exact same time but NOT going onto another train: 155 quid. Eh?

Now of course, I’m wondering how much cheaper it would have been if I’d tried to go even further. And if they escort you to your destination to make sure you really do get on that final train …

*i.e. just the one arm and leg

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8 Responses to Confused? You will be

  1. Dom says:

    National Express East Coast are, in the finest traditions put down by Great North Eastern Railway, a bunch of thieves who will, if you don’t have the foresight to book your ticket some years in advance, charge you 7 times the price of the cheaper tickets and more. Despite the fact that they may be running trains on the Sabbath (you have checked the journey details and made sure it does have the immortal words ‘bus’ next to it along with a 27 hour journey time right?) if they are running them down non standard routes they’re even more likely to be late than normal. Please also note that it is now illegal to travel on a train with anything less than 400 other people on the carriage within 100 miles of London. Normal caveats about canceling trains for any reason they see fit still hold.

  2. disgruntled says:

    Trust me, once you’ve sampled the delights of Virgin Trains you think of your NXEC journeys with fondness. Mr. Branson told us he wanted to make taking a train more like flying and he wasn’t wrong – but we’re talking Ryan Air… only without the cheap part

  3. Damn I would have said pop in to work for a cuppa as well, but as I’m on leave I wont be here.

    Why are you going to Palmers Green though as I stay up there when i go and visit mother :)

  4. disgruntled says:

    Shame …

    Palmer’s Green is where babymother, aka my sister, lives.

  5. huttonian says:

    A few weks ago I booked a ticket for the wife-standard single Ber Wick to Kings Cross. Senior rail card, mid week, mid morning £62

    25 secs later I booked a ticket for myself single, day after wife-First Class popped up £37. No senior card necessary
    Weird but I did not argue

  6. Ah right, well when I’m up that way next tell her I’ll pop in for a cuppa with her :D

  7. It’s going via Carlisle because the East Coast mainline is shut for repairs..

  8. disgruntled says:

    Aha. An engineering double whammy

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