Train Space Availability (Waterloo to Portsmouth)

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
Psamathe
Posts: 8848
Joined: 10 Jan 2014, 8:56pm

Train Space Availability (Waterloo to Portsmouth)

Postby Psamathe » 27 Jun 2018, 12:20pm

Not the generic discussion about bikes on trains but specific route. I'm looking to train it to the ferry port and the 1st into London leg I can book my bike on the train but the Waterloo to Portsmouth leg is 1st come 1st served. I can miss a train or 2 as times are not crucial (ferry departs late) but I can't wait all day and spend the night in Waterloo!

They apparently have bike spaces on all their trains and their Customer Services say if the train is not too busy you can use space around the door (but that's Customer Services NOT the train guard who "got out of bed the wrong side that day".

Does anybody use that service (afternoon, weekday, off-peak) and know if bikes are a rare thing (i.e. I'm pretty safe) or are the bike spaces generally all taken?

Thanks
Ian
Last edited by Psamathe on 27 Jun 2018, 2:02pm, edited 1 time in total.

teamonster
Posts: 49
Joined: 21 Feb 2010, 9:04pm

Re: Train Space Availability

Postby teamonster » 27 Jun 2018, 1:23pm

I took a mid week 1300 ish train to Portsmouth in mid May. I was the only bike on there, until Croydon where a MTB joined. Had no problem getting the dedicated bike space, but I did make sure I was there early and positioned myself to be one of the first on ! I guess by going early afternoon and getting in Portsmouth way too early for the very you miss the crowds. Others may have different experiences. The guards were very friendly, clearly got them on a good day
[https://journeyswiththetank.files.wordpress.com/2018/05/img_1454.jpg?w=1100
Last edited by teamonster on 27 Jun 2018, 3:32pm, edited 1 time in total.

Bez
Posts: 1020
Joined: 10 Feb 2015, 10:41am
Contact:

Re: Train Space Availability (Waterloo to Portsmouth)

Postby Bez » 27 Jun 2018, 2:56pm

Two types of train on this route (assuming you're going via Guildford; there are lengthier options via Basingstoke): 444s (white) have 3x dedicated spaces in two of the five carriages in each unit; 450s (blue) have 2x shared (folding seat) spaces in one of the four carrriages in each unit. But you won't know which type you'll get in advance unless you're a regular on a specific service.

If you're travelling from Waterloo you can get a bike on any service provided you're either getting off after Guildford or are outside restricted times (leaving 4-7pm, iirc).

Overflow of spaces happens, and I've never seen it become a problem: passengers and staff tend to be tolerant provided you don't take the p.

Trains departing Waterloo start boarding about 15 minutes before departure, so if you can arrive accordingly then even at the height of rush hour you should be fine for a journey to Portsmouth.

Psamathe
Posts: 8848
Joined: 10 Jan 2014, 8:56pm

Re: Train Space Availability (Waterloo to Portsmouth)

Postby Psamathe » 27 Jun 2018, 3:21pm

Many thanks

Probably be early afternoon and I can always wait for the next train or even the one after if need be.

Sounds like I should be fine anyway.

Ian

User avatar
Graham
Moderator
Posts: 5474
Joined: 14 Dec 2006, 8:48pm

Re: Train Space Availability (Waterloo to Portsmouth)

Postby Graham » 27 Jun 2018, 3:50pm

It is highly unlikely that you will have problem in the early afternoon, unless something extraordinary happens . . e.g. a group of cyclists all hit the same train for a club outing.

Even then the next train, on that frequent service, is not long to wait for.

User avatar
robgul
Posts: 2667
Joined: 8 Jan 2007, 8:40pm
Contact:

Re: Train Space Availability (Waterloo to Portsmouth)

Postby robgul » 27 Jun 2018, 6:38pm

Last year we did Victoria to Portsmouth because it was a lot cheaper than from Waterloo - 11 people, 11 loaded touring bikes - just wheeled them on to a very long train, about 1400/1430 IIRC - no problem whatsoever.

Rob