Booking a bike on a train (UK)

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robing
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Joined: 7 Sep 2014, 9:11am

Booking a bike on a train (UK)

Postby robing » 16 Sep 2017, 6:36pm

Which sites can you still book a bike reservation on a UK train now that this is no longer possible on Virgin East Coast?

Chat Noir
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Joined: 22 Jan 2010, 8:52pm
Location: York

Re: Booking a bike on a train (UK)

Postby Chat Noir » 16 Sep 2017, 7:02pm

I always book my rail tickets online with the Trainline.com. If I’m taking a bike I phone them up and get a bike booking this way. Costs a little extra (£1.50?) but means I can organise the tickets from home and pick them up later at the station. The last two occasions I got the same, very helpful, person on the line.

While on the subject of booking bikes on trains: anyone know the latest time you can make a bike reservation? Earlier this year I arrived at Bristol Temple Meads station with an open return. A member of platform staff told me I could get a bike reservation for the train as long as it was at least 10 minutes before the train was due – which I duly did. When at Inverness later this summer with an open return I found real uncertainty about getting on any train with my bike so tried to get a reservation. An unhelpful member of the ticket office staff told me that I couldn’t get a reservation for any train that evening, suggesting it had to be not less than 24 hours. I said what I was told at Bristol but was given short shrift. While waiting for a train I was chatting with someone over coffee and ended up getting a lift back to York and dropped at home that night by a very kind end to ender from Leeds who wanted company on his way back. Perhaps I should have posted this in a positive thread!
Dawes Galaxy 1979; Mercian 531 1982; Peugeot 753 1987; Peugeot 531 Pro 1988; Peugeot 653 1990; Bob Jackson 731 OS 1992; Gazelle 731 OS Exception 1996; Dolan Dedacciai 2004; Trek 8000 MTB 2011; Focus Izalco Pro 2012

robing
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Re: Booking a bike on a train (UK)

Postby robing » 19 Sep 2017, 11:37am

Update - just had this reply from Virgin East coast today:

"The ability to book a bike space will be brought back on the next update to the website, at the moment if you wish to reserve a bike space you can always call us on the above number."

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horizon
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Joined: 9 Jan 2007, 11:24am
Location: Cornwall

Re: Booking a bike on a train (UK)

Postby horizon » 19 Sep 2017, 11:50am

Chat Noir wrote:
While on the subject of booking bikes on trains: anyone know the latest time you can make a bike reservation?


It will vary with the type of train (though this may make it appear as though it is which TOC). XC and Virgin have electronic reservations (they can appear while you are comfortably seated in an "unreserved" seat"!). GWR have paper/manual reservations (even the ones you book on-line) so will need extra time, normally the day before
Bikes belong on trains.

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Sweep
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Re: Booking a bike on a train (UK)

Postby Sweep » 19 Sep 2017, 4:46pm

robing wrote:Update - just had this reply from Virgin East coast today:

"The ability to book a bike space will be brought back on the next update to the website, at the moment if you wish to reserve a bike space you can always call us on the above number."


Ah but did they offer a clue as to when this update might be?

I seem to recall that someone on another cycling forum/list got a reply that effectively said they had sod all plans to do anything at all a about this.

Alert - --if their reply said 《insert profile of bod sending comment, in this case cyclists》 are at the centre of out business/offer, you can file it under bullshit and forget it.
Sweep

Tinnishill
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Joined: 15 Sep 2013, 9:58am

Re: Booking a bike on a train (UK)

Postby Tinnishill » 19 Sep 2017, 5:42pm

I booked a trip last week through the Scotrail website. Leg 1 was on Scotrail suburban where no booking was available, then Cross Country, then Virgin West Coast both of which have mandatory booking for bicycles. The Scotrail site easily booked the Virgin leg but not the Crosscountry. I had to phone Crosscountry after buying the ticket, go through several levels of telephone filtering and talk to a friendly operator who hummed and hawed quite a bit. Eventually she said that she couldn't issue a "bike coupon" but gave me a booking number to quote which was different from the booking number on our tickets. Obviously Crosscountry's operators (Arriva Trains, AKA German State Railways) don't want the business.

Does anybody know if CUK HQ have done any lobbying about this in recent years, because I can't remember them saying anything ?
Agitate, educate, organise.

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horizon
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Location: Cornwall

Re: Booking a bike on a train (UK)

Postby horizon » 19 Sep 2017, 7:45pm

Tinnishill wrote:then Cross Country, then Virgin West Coast both of which have mandatory booking for bicycles.



AFAIK, on the XC Voyager trains there are three bike spaces, two of which are bookable, one of which is not. Booking isn't mandatory but you risk not getting your bike on if all three are full.
Bikes belong on trains.

mercalia
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Location: london South

Re: Booking a bike on a train (UK)

Postby mercalia » 19 Sep 2017, 8:43pm

well got an email today from VEC

"Do you want to help shape the future of Virgin Trains and have the chance of winning awesome prizes at the same time? You do? Great, let's get started!

REGISTER NOW

Virgin Trains have teamed up with Ipsos MORI, an independent consumer insights agency, and together we have created an online community – Viewpoint – to do just that.

This month, we’ll be talking about the Azuma – Virgin Train East Coast’s new trains that will start running in 2018. This is really important, and we want to get as many peoples’ views as possible, and if you do take part in this survey, you’ll be entered into a prize draw to win one of three iPads!

At Viewpoint we talk about all things related to Virgin Trains and UK travel. It is open one week each month and you’ll be able to share your views and experiences in many ways, including quick quizzes, conversations with fellow community members and designing your own ideas for Virgin Trains.

If you want to become a member of Viewpoint, click on the register now button above."

https://virgintrains.ipsos-space.com/authorize/

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Sweep
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Re: Booking a bike on a train (UK)

Postby Sweep » 19 Sep 2017, 8:59pm

Thanks for that mercalia but i strongly suspect that like all such marketing initiatives it will be strongly censored/manipulated to become a wnkfest for the new trains.

Still I may see if it will take comments on me arriving at euston to yet again, last week, find that there was no one to release my bike from the train, despite what I had been told, yet again, on boarding. Thanks Virgin West Coast.
Sweep

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Sweep
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Location: London

Re: Booking a bike on a train (UK)

Postby Sweep » 19 Sep 2017, 9:06pm

Edit
It appears that

"Membership of the Panel is via invitation only."

They must like you mercalia.

If you read the terms it is all too clear that it is strictly regulated/manipulated/worthless.
Sweep


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