Prohibitive train fares

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
random37
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Postby random37 » 27 Oct 2008, 11:17am

If you're taking a folder or bike with s&s couplings in a bag, coach fares are cheaper than anything.
National express have a lot of £3 fares in their current sale!

jam05
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Increase Car Taxes!

Postby jam05 » 27 Oct 2008, 11:25am

It is a time consuming task trying to find a cheap train ticket - finding all the different options, different routes, single or return. As someone who has chosen not to use cars again due to a keen sense of the current environmental degredation human kind is causing, I find it insulting that it is such a trial to find a fair ticket price.

Time for transition! Tax cars more and subsidize public transport. In Italy and France, it is very reasonable. Britain's private train companies charge so high that I am not surprised people use cars. In the long term, however, it will prove to be more costly to have used the motor car. Until that moment of realisation, we will keep polluting and not investing highly enough in our vital public transportation.

I left this forum in anger at the lack of enthusiasm for a thread I posted about transition towns. I have returned because we need to make a transition, time for a jolly good change!

Tonyf33
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Postby Tonyf33 » 27 Oct 2008, 12:26pm

Whooa there bud, tax cars more!! I don't think so. There is no way that ANY government now & in the future that will subsidise 'public' transport and this certainly isn't going to happen for the rail system as it is all owned privately. Even if it went back into the hands of the government it couldn't afford to do it.

Kirst
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Location: Edinburgh

Postby Kirst » 27 Oct 2008, 12:39pm

I'm going to Huddersfield at Christmas, and a return from Edinburgh on the trains I wanted was £84. But I got singles Edinburgh-York, York-Huddersfield, Huddersfield-York, York-Edinburgh, on exactly the same trains, for £33. It's crazy.
I can handle bars and cycle paths but I can't handle cars and psychopaths

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ferrit worrier
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Postby ferrit worrier » 27 Oct 2008, 8:38pm

jam05

I started using public transport 18months ago as opposed to my old landrover (1964 SWB series 2a) which I have had over 20 years, purchased second hand in sept 1988. but after several months of listening to foul mouthed youths discussing their antics of the previous night. and others with Ipods and phones bleating out indiscript noise, supposedly music. I got on my bike.

If the govenment want people on public transport then clean it up first!!!! :x and then get some time tables operating that will get people to work when they need to. Many a time I have been left waiting in the bus station for a bus that didn't arrive, no explanation no interest.

And yes the Landy is tax free (historic vehicle) but my Mondeo isn't! and the landrover is used at week end off road taking equipment to a mine we work in as a hobby (industrial archeology)
Percussive maintainance, if it don't fit, hit it with the hammer.

glueman
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Postby glueman » 27 Oct 2008, 9:35pm

A lot of positive reaction for rail travel seems to come from individuals travelling alone with the ingenuity and time to track down elusive fare offers. Try travelling with two adults and two children by train at shorter notice and you'd pretty soon go bankrupt.

I really dislike driving but we use the car as little as practical and the carbon footprint is divided by four people. I'd love to see cars taxed off the road and goods back on rail but the railway system would meltdown. Railways rely on the majority still travelling by motorcar and the rest being paid for by their employers, at least in sensible hours of travel. Not much of a choice, is it?

vernon
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Re: Increase Car Taxes!

Postby vernon » 27 Oct 2008, 10:05pm

jam05 wrote:It is a time consuming task trying to find a cheap train ticket - finding all the different options, different routes, single or return. As someone who has chosen not to use cars again due to a keen sense of the current environmental degredation human kind is causing, I find it insulting that it is such a trial to find a fair ticket price.

Time for transition! Tax cars more and subsidize public transport. In Italy and France, it is very reasonable. Britain's private train companies charge so high that I am not surprised people use cars. In the long term, however, it will prove to be more costly to have used the motor car. Until that moment of realisation, we will keep polluting and not investing highly enough in our vital public transportation.

I left this forum in anger at the lack of enthusiasm for a thread I posted about transition towns. I have returned because we need to make a transition, time for a jolly good change!


I don't have that many problems getting cheap tickets. Without exception the train journeys that I have made this year have all been cheaper than If I'd taken my car. As for transition towns - I'd love to be enlightened but as several of the top level search engine results don't work I'm not that much the wiser.

Slowroad
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Postby Slowroad » 28 Oct 2008, 3:28pm

Glueman: you make some good points! As a solo traveller I'm aware I can make decisions about how I travel round that aren't available to my friends who have young families, who often feel guilty about using their cars.

Vernon: there is an article about transition towns at http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2008/ ... itiontowns and one website on transition is http://www.transitiontowns.org/. Hope that these are of interest.

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CJ
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Postby CJ » 28 Oct 2008, 4:33pm

Tonyf33 wrote:I think a lot of train journeys are good value if you can go at the right time. i book my son(adult fare) to go up to Hull from Letchworth garden city, if he goes on a Friday morning & comes back Monday at 7:30am it costs £25 (£10+£15) sometimes £35. If he goes for a week then we can sometimes get it for £20. Even driving like a snail in the diesel(@50mpg) costs me £35 plus the wear & tear.

Ah yes, but the car is ready to depart when you are, so the only valid comparison is with a walk-on anytime fare.

Apart from the matter that two can travel for the price of one, invalid comparison of anytime car travel (no penalties even for last minute cancellation due to bad weather forecast) with inflexible fares of limited availability, was the greatest defect with the recent article in Cycle that tried to make taking a bike on a coach look like a good idea! Oh yes, and put your trip at the whim of a bus driver, who may or may not wish to put your bike in his boot. All the uncertainty of train travel and then some!

When Stephenson wrote that it's better to travel hopefully than to arrive, I somehow do not think that's what he had in mind.

Winchester to Pembroke: 216 miles, I can do that on £20 of diesel; or, if I cost in the entire expense of the car: £54. (Yes really, I've recorded every penny including buying the old thing and we're down to 25p per mile!) Rail travel has got to get at least that cheap, on a walk-on basis, with bike, before it persuades me to get rid of the car that I bought purely because our local trains banned tandems!
Chris Juden
One lady owner, never raced or jumped.

jp01
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Postby jp01 » 28 Oct 2008, 7:38pm

Don't give up yet!.
There are some good tips, already mentioned.

What you need is the date when the advance tickets go on sale.
You can get these by looking at Booking horizons on www.atoctravelagents.org
click booking horizons.

I found this gem from the good folk on uk.rec.railway.

HTH

brianleach
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Location: Winchester, Hants

Postby brianleach » 29 Oct 2008, 8:49am

Winchester to Pembroke: 216 miles, I can do that on £20 of diesel; or, if I cost in the entire expense of the car: £54. (Yes really, I've recorded every penny including buying the old thing and we're down to 25p per mile!)

To be honest this was really my point.

What I didn't say originally was that this is a residential music weekend so going by car is altogether more convenient, (could probably fit the melodeon on the bike somewhere). But I really was feeling rather guilty about the carbon footprint of a single passenger in a car (admittedly low emission) and would have been prepared to put up with the additional hassle of getting there by train if the cost had been comparable.

I will certainly look again once the advance bookings are released and see what the situation is then.

Thanks for all the helpful posts.

Brian

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Cunobelin
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Postby Cunobelin » 29 Oct 2008, 6:03pm

glueman wrote:A lot of positive reaction for rail travel seems to come from individuals travelling alone with the ingenuity and time to track down elusive fare offers. Try travelling with two adults and two children by train at shorter notice and you'd pretty soon go bankrupt.


Two adults and two children with bikes is not possible AT ALL on the UK rail network!

jam05
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Joined: 9 Mar 2007, 9:19am

Postby jam05 » 29 Oct 2008, 8:44pm

Two adults and two children with bikes is not possible AT ALL on the UK rail network![/quote]

Melt the cars down, stigmatise unecessary car travelling (community nurses, doctors and ambulances only) sell the metal and invest in large 'ride on' bike carriages on trains, increase the train network, increase frequency of journeys. Reduce fares so its cheaper than walking and go enjoy a cycle in Scotland for a £5.00 return fair from London at weekends. Envisage and realise!

Out with petrol use, out with unnecessary carbon burning, longevity for our planet and our children and their aunties' children!

Cyclenut
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Postby Cyclenut » 30 Oct 2008, 1:05am

jam05 wrote:
Two adults and two children with bikes is not possible AT ALL on the UK rail network!


Melt the cars down, stigmatise unecessary car travelling (community nurses, doctors and ambulances only) sell the metal and invest in large 'ride on' bike carriages on trains, increase the train network, increase frequency of journeys. Reduce fares so its cheaper than walking and go enjoy a cycle in Scotland for a £5.00 return fair from London at weekends. Envisage and realise!

Out with petrol use, out with unnecessary carbon burning, longevity for our planet and our children and their aunties' children!

Back in the early 70s that was my vision too, and when the 1979 oil price shock came, boy didn't I feel prophetic! Surely it couldn't be long before the world came around to my, or by then our sustainable way of thinking ...

But how long it has been. For more than 30 years we lived how people are now talking of living. We did take two kids on cycling trips by train, to the shrinking circle of locations where that remained possible, but in 2004 we were obliged to get the car.

When it becomes as easy and cheap to live sustainably as it was in 1975, we'll do it again like a shot. But there's a whole lot of services need to be restored first. Rebuilding them would give the economy the boost it needs right now, but I daresay the Government will find other priorities. :(
Chris Juden (at home and not asleep)

glueman
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Postby glueman » 30 Oct 2008, 7:49am

Cyclenut wrote:Rebuilding them would give the economy the boost it needs right now, but I daresay the Government will find other priorities. :(

I've often wondered about that, whether massive infrastructure developments bring their own wealth. It would be nice to think so.

In the case of rail Beeching's pruning killed lines built when labour was cheap and much of the track bed has been built on now. That doesn't mean we can't come up with 21st century solutions but they tend to be piecemeal, guided buses and off network rapid transit systems. Joined up thinking seems to be beyond modern political sensibilities who run scared of anything taking longer than a single parliament to contemplate and wary of collaboration in case Big Ideas steal brownie points.