Train fares to the Extremities

Specific board for this popular undertaking.
vernon
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Train fares to the Extremities

Postby vernon » 30 Apr 2008, 12:20am

Travellers to Thurso by train face an astronomical rise in the minimum fare if the Leeds to Thurso fare rise from £43 to £125 after 18th May is anything to go by.

Paradoxically Leeds to penzance fares with a break of journey in Plymouth drop from £64 to £20.

Strange logic or what? Ok, different train operating companies are at work here but a near three fold increase in price at one end of the scale and country and a three fold decrease at the other...

The twenty quid fare to Penzance makes a half LEJOG i.e. LE to Leeds very tempting in the nine day window of opportunity that I have in July.....

addendum

It appears to be possible to travel to Thurso for £43 but the journey takes 18 hours from Leeds. I could fly to Australia in that time! A journey undetaken in around 12 hours during a single day has a minimum price of £125.

iaincullen
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Postby iaincullen » 30 Apr 2008, 7:41pm

Searching for 30th May I find the cheapest Leeds - Thurso is £35.50 for a 13 1/2 hr journey. 0812hrs - 21.36hrs.

Of course in the mad world of UK public transport that is only by buying 3 seperate tickets.

Leeds - Edinburgh 0812-1130 £16

Edinburgh to Inverness 13.36-1707 £10

Inverness to Thurso 1752 -2136 £9.50

I find you need to start searching for cheap tickets about 10 - 12 weeks away as cheap tickets often sell out.

By the way the fares above were found with searching on trainline.com

thirdcrank
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Postby thirdcrank » 30 Apr 2008, 7:48pm

It's the sort of thing that could become a panel game, on the lines (sorry :oops: ) of Mornington Crescent. I'll stake my claim to the fame and fortune now, let's call it 'Just the ticket!'

vernon
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Postby vernon » 30 Apr 2008, 11:01pm

thirdcrank wrote:It's the sort of thing that could become a panel game, on the lines (sorry :oops: ) of Mornington Crescent. I'll stake my claim to the fame and fortune now, let's call it 'Just the ticket!'


OK round two....

I've been pointed to the availability of a £30.10 fare on 20th June which also involves the purchasing of three tickets for similar legs of the journey posted previously.

Only two thing wrong with the prices - they aren't available when I am able to travel :-(

I haven't even considered the availability of a bike booking on the Scotrail legs...

Getting a bargain on the trains now is rapidly becoming an arcane art. Leeds to Thurso or Wick used to be cheap as a single ticket journey and was available as a cheap option far more regularly than what appears to be the case now. I had the luxury of being able to pick and choose from quite a wide range of dates in 2006 and 2007 when purchasing a Thurso ticket.

Mind you with the luck I'm having with data base searches - I performed a query on a 6,000 record data set and got a nil return on three seperate ocassions when the three seperate sets of query terms all managed to miss the target. I couldn't believe how unlucky my choices of query terms were.

I'm no longer surprised at what can be unearthed (or concealed from me !) using the train finder web sites. Tonights searches for a matching set of tickets can yeild some bargains for Thurso/Wick I'm pleased to say but the cheapest options for my fixed time slot still appears to be £125 give or take a pound or two.

Notwithstanding the discovery of a cheap option to Thurso the fact remains that the cheap tickets on some services have been hikes post 18th May.

Still looks like I'll head for Penzance in preference to t'other end if I dont succumb to the pull of Holland and a cheap ferry ticket :-)

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The Jazz
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Postby The Jazz » 1 May 2008, 1:01am

Just to add my tu'pennys worth, we have had a similarish debate in the past.

I ruffled a few feathers stating that I was hiring a car to LE and another, home, fom JOG.

Truth is, even with escalating fuel costs, it is not a bad option.

http://forum.ctc.org.uk/viewtopic.php?t=10654&highlight=

Take 3 cyclists, divide the cost of car hire and fuel and it looks more and more viable. And a lot less hassle.

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Mick F
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Postby Mick F » 1 May 2008, 7:47am

Just checked with Firstgreatwestern.co.uk for a price from Plymouth to Thurso mid-month in July.

Changing in London Paddington and Kings Cross, Edinburgh and Inverness.

£201.40 single Standard Class.
Mick F. Cornwall

flobber
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Postby flobber » 1 May 2008, 12:51pm

More positively, I was concerned about being able to get tickets for riding LEJOG in June. It turned out that with a bit of flexibility with dates I got tickets from Nottingham to Penzance to 16 quid, Inverness back to Nottingham for 23 and wick to inverness for about a tenner.

After searching out all the fares online and getting fed up with the prices that were coming up, and being given wrong informaiton over the phone (different each time I tried to call) I finally went to nottingham train station...the staff were really helpful and found me the best prices. It has meant that I am coming home a day later, but this gives me a day 'in case'. Not sure why but the staff at the station were able to locate tickets (not always by the most direct routes) that were available as the super advance (or what ever it is called) that the people on the phone weren't able to do.

The other problem I had on the phone was that they weren't able to book my bike for the whole journey....the man at the train station explained that this was because for some secitons, they just don't book bikes and explained that this shouldn't be a problem. Leaves a risk I know, but not a huge one.

my advice...go to a train station and talk to someone. you might be better able to work out the options with a person.

andymiller
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Postby andymiller » 1 May 2008, 1:30pm

I think it's worth bearing in mind that the fare structures are all being rationalised, and the new Advance fares may not yet be in the databases. I've tried searching on the First ScotRail website quite a long way in advance (end June) and the only fares that are showing are the saver singles. I can't believe that all of the advance fares are sold out, so I'm thinking there are database problems.

I'd give them a ring. Try ScotRail Telesales on 08457 55 00 33.

andymiller
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Postby andymiller » 1 May 2008, 1:33pm

Mick F wrote:Just checked with Firstgreatwestern.co.uk for a price from Plymouth to Thurso mid-month in July.

Changing in London Paddington and Kings Cross, Edinburgh and Inverness.

£201.40 single Standard Class.


Mick

If you are going via London you might find it worth investigating the prices for a Bargain Berth on the Caledonian Sleeper. £19 if you are in the queue the day they become available.

pesky seagulls

Postby pesky seagulls » 1 May 2008, 3:33pm

The First ScotRail website has this offer available shortly until the end of June to the more mature cyclist. Apologies if this doesn't apply to any of the above posters !

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Alastair K
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Postby Alastair K » 1 May 2008, 4:00pm

Having had mild cardiac failure looking at train prices I thought I'd try flying.
As I'm from the west country I could fly from Bristol to Inverness for £21.99, get the train from Inverness to Thurso for £9, and courier the bike up to a B&B in Thurso for about £25.
Is there any reason why this isn't feasible? I'm sure I've missed something....

vernon
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Postby vernon » 1 May 2008, 11:07pm

Alastair K wrote:Having had mild cardiac failure looking at train prices I thought I'd try flying.
As I'm from the west country I could fly from Bristol to Inverness for £21.99, get the train from Inverness to Thurso for £9, and courier the bike up to a B&B in Thurso for about £25.
Is there any reason why this isn't feasible? I'm sure I've missed something....


Luggage allowance?

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Mick F
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Postby Mick F » 1 May 2008, 11:19pm

Missed something?

Dunno, but I'm going up to Edinburgh from Plymouth by train with Bike and luggage. Because I booked early enough, I got a 1st Class ticket for £50.

If I could lower myself to Standard Class, I could go for £26.

Stupid prices.
Mick F. Cornwall

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Alastair K
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Postby Alastair K » 2 May 2008, 12:14am

vernon wrote:
Alastair K wrote:Having had mild cardiac failure looking at train prices I thought I'd try flying.
As I'm from the west country I could fly from Bristol to Inverness for £21.99, get the train from Inverness to Thurso for £9, and courier the bike up to a B&B in Thurso for about £25.
Is there any reason why this isn't feasible? I'm sure I've missed something....


Luggage allowance?


What luggage allowance - all luggage goes with the bike.
The flight is just over an hour - I'll take a pasty.

loafer
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Postby loafer » 20 May 2008, 4:06pm

just to put my oar in....last time we did legog..we hired a car from inverness.one way to get home ..could do that to get up to inverness.then train to thurso and the same back when your finished http://www.europcar.co.uk/