UK Trains - Online bike reservations

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
jonsear
Posts: 4
Joined: 25 Feb 2013, 7:22pm

UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby jonsear » 1 Aug 2017, 10:35am

Hi

For years I've been using the East Coast online booking system whenever I need to make a bike reservation, but they have just withdrawn this facility and require cyclists to phone a call centre which can be very time consuming. Can anyone recommend another website which allows you to make UK wide bike reservations online?

Thanks

Jon

Richard Fairhurst
Posts: 1014
Joined: 2 Mar 2008, 4:57pm
Location: Charlbury, Oxfordshire

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby Richard Fairhurst » 1 Aug 2017, 11:06am

Any FirstGroup railway site (GWR, TransPennine Express, Hull Trains) or Chiltern Railways.

They use a booking system called WebTIS and you can read about it here: http://saveecrewards.co.uk/blog/webtis-last-gift-gner
cycle.travel - maps, journey-planner, route guides and city guides

mercalia
Posts: 6647
Joined: 22 Sep 2013, 10:03pm
Location: london South

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby mercalia » 1 Aug 2017, 11:12am

jonsear wrote:Hi

For years I've been using the East Coast online booking system whenever I need to make a bike reservation, but they have just withdrawn this facility and require cyclists to phone a call centre which can be very time consuming. Can anyone recommend another website which allows you to make UK wide bike reservations online?

Thanks

Jon


yes got an email to make a new account - but does it apply to the old website or has that now gone also

if so we all need to email them and tell them it aint good enough :evil:

jonsear
Posts: 4
Joined: 25 Feb 2013, 7:22pm

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby jonsear » 1 Aug 2017, 11:23am

Thanks Richard.

and yes - the old East Coast booking site seems to have disappeared as of today

User avatar
gaz
Posts: 12260
Joined: 9 Mar 2007, 12:09pm
Location: Kent

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby gaz » 1 Aug 2017, 11:38am

It's got nothing to do with vorsprung durch technic you know ...

robing
Posts: 628
Joined: 7 Sep 2014, 9:11am

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby robing » 1 Aug 2017, 11:39am

jonsear wrote:Thanks Richard.

and yes - the old East Coast booking site seems to have disappeared as of today

:(

gbnz
Posts: 1140
Joined: 13 Sep 2008, 10:38am

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby gbnz » 5 Aug 2017, 8:51am

Richard Fairhurst wrote:Any FirstGroup railway site (GWR, TransPennine Express, Hull Trains) or Chiltern Railways.

They use a booking system called WebTIS and you can read about it here: http://saveecrewards.co.uk/blog/webtis-last-gift-gner


Thanks, booked a ticket on the East Coast mainline via GWR (And sent a "disgusted" email to shabby Virgin East Coast Trains)

gbnz
Posts: 1140
Joined: 13 Sep 2008, 10:38am

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby gbnz » 5 Aug 2017, 12:53pm

Well, I'm now on my fourth email today, welcoming me to the Virgin Trains "family". They're specifically asking me for my opinion on their new site

nirakaro
Posts: 734
Joined: 22 Dec 2007, 2:01am

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby nirakaro » 16 Aug 2017, 3:39pm

I had a rant at Virgin about this, and eventually got a reply that included this -
"This is a temporary issue and is being worked on. We understand the importance of being able to book everything you require all in one go and we want it to be as easy as possible. There have been a few hiccups doing the transition of the old and new website and our Digital Team are working tirelessly to get everything working."
So there's still hope ...

User avatar
mjr
Posts: 8177
Joined: 20 Jun 2011, 7:06pm
Location: Norfolk or Somerset, mostly
Contact:

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby mjr » 16 Aug 2017, 4:00pm

Virgin Trains East Coast tweeted today to ask if people preferred paperwork mountains or mountain biking and suggested using their trains to go mountain biking... they've deleted the tweet so I guess they didn't like the replies :lol:
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
All the above is CC-By-SA and no other implied copyright license to Cycle magazine.

mercalia
Posts: 6647
Joined: 22 Sep 2013, 10:03pm
Location: london South

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby mercalia » 17 Aug 2017, 12:24pm

I dont understand why adding a bike booking section can be so hard? is not rocket science? Maybe they should have used a different tech company to make the website if the one they are using couldnt do the job properly? In fact should have been part of the job specification? no excuse really?

User avatar
mjr
Posts: 8177
Joined: 20 Jun 2011, 7:06pm
Location: Norfolk or Somerset, mostly
Contact:

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby mjr » 17 Aug 2017, 1:03pm

mercalia wrote:I dont understand why adding a bike booking section can be so hard? is not rocket science? Maybe they should have used a different tech company to make the website if the one they are using couldnt do the job properly? In fact should have been part of the job specification? no excuse really?

I don't understand it either - but mainly because they've not bothered to really explain what's causing the hold-up. I wouldn't be surprised if the bike-booking back-end system is annoyingly different to the passenger-booking one and there's some sort of face-off happening between the website developers and the back-end providers.

I think I've posted before a report via sustrans that bike-booking was part of the job specification but was delayed in order to hit the launch date (one of those old "pick two" jokes). I don't know what the continuing delay is caused by. The silence from VTEC is frustrating.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
All the above is CC-By-SA and no other implied copyright license to Cycle magazine.

gbnz
Posts: 1140
Joined: 13 Sep 2008, 10:38am

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby gbnz » 18 Aug 2017, 6:04pm

mjr wrote:Virgin Trains East Coast tweeted today to ask if people preferred paperwork mountains or mountain biking and suggested using their trains to go mountain biking... they've deleted the tweet so I guess they didn't like the replies :lol:


Surprising. Virgin Trains East Coast launch a new website, block cyclists from reserving a space for a bike while booking tickets online and then are surprised when cyclists tell them to f£%^£"£ off!

I had my response from Virgin Trains today, effectively telling me to f%££( off (I.e. I can walk to the station and book a bike on a train or use that 20th century invention - the telephone). Online booking is a big NO from Virgin Trains.

VIRGIN TRAINS (ANTI CYCLING). VTN-170805BCBZ
Thank you for your correspondence on 5 August 2017 regards the problems you have encountered when attempting to book cycle space on the new Virgin Trains East Coast website.

I am sorry that you find the change disappointing, I have logged your comments and they will be used in reviews of the website launch, you can still make cycle reservations both at Travel Centres and stations, right up to the point of departure, space permitting and via contacting the Web Support department on 03457 225 111, between 08.00-20.00 hours Monday-Saturday and between 10.00-20.00 hours on Sunday.

Yours sincerely

Russell Brooks
Customer Solutions Representative
Virgin Trains East Coast

User avatar
Sweep
Posts: 3363
Joined: 20 Oct 2011, 4:57pm
Location: London

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby Sweep » 18 Aug 2017, 6:28pm

Do not whatever you try and do try to use the 20th century tech of the phone if you value your sanity. The virgin call centre is an abomination for bikes. My advice is to stick to the 19th century solution of a pedal to the station. Combined with checking stuff in the station on a mobile, or on a tab if they have free wifi. My next virgin booking will involve a pedal to euston. I have had enough of their micturate poor system.

No excuses Virgin.
Sweep

mercalia
Posts: 6647
Joined: 22 Sep 2013, 10:03pm
Location: london South

Re: UK Trains - Online bike reservations

Postby mercalia » 18 Aug 2017, 8:17pm

Sweep wrote:Do not whatever you try and do try to use the 20th century tech of the phone if you value your sanity. The virgin call centre is an abomination for bikes. My advice is to stick to the 19th century solution of a pedal to the station. Combined with checking stuff in the station on a mobile, or on a tab if they have free wifi. My next virgin booking will involve a pedal to euston. I have had enough of their micturate poor system.

No excuses Virgin.


even for advanced tickets where there is no refund? what do you do first - get a bike ticket then a person ticket or other way around?