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Rail travel

Steven Jardine is off-linePlatinum Member
14 December 2015 03:41
RedChecker
Photographer
RedChecker
Location
United Kingdom
Buckinghamshire
Stoke Mandeville

Quote from MrTim
The public transport system in this country seems to be fundamentally broken to me. The train is sometimes cheaper if I know exactly what times I want to travel at least a month in advance, but if not the budget option is always going by car. Whether it's going halfway across the country or popping into town, the cost of petrol and parking is invariably significantly less than the train or bus fare. I know there are other costs involved in owning a car, but as I do have one the additional expense is what counts on a per journey basis. It really should be a luxury to travel on my own in a private vehicle rather than the low budget option, but that's not how it works!



And that's my main gripe with HS2 (which is skimming the edge of the village where I live).  One of the major selling points of it is that the HS2 consortium claimed it'll reduce traffic in North London by several thousand cars a day but I personally don't believe a word of it.  Already travel from Birmingham to London is around the £100 return for peak times and I'd imagine the premium that HS2 would charge could potentially double this (it's a luxury service afterall).  Other than a comparitively small minority of super-wealthy businessmen/women who'd use the premium service, for the life of me I cannot understand who'd bother with those sorts of costs for the sake of saving half an hour on the journey and many would still opt for using their cars (which as you say... you're already paying for with ownership anyway so you may as well use it).

Like I said earlier, I'd much rather see lots of smaller non-premium commuter services interconnecting towns around the country than blowing the whole lot on a single premium service that's already catered for (albeit, at capacity but encouraging other towns to do business with each other would IMO ease the pressure off simply doing business with London alone)
When you are dead, you do not know that you are dead. All of your pain is felt by others. The same thing happens when you are stupid.


Bob is off-linePlatinum Member
14 December 2015 08:39
Bob
Photographer
Bob
Location
United Kingdom
Devon
Honiton

Quote from MrTim
The public transport system in this country seems to be fundamentally broken to me.


You're possibly not using it much then.

On Saturday I wandered down to my local station to catch the 10:15, undertook a CAMRA Half-Pint Half-Marathon around thirteen pubs in Exeter between 11:00 and 19:00, threw in a 14th watering hole for luck, and still caught the 19:30 back home to allow me to take in a 4 King Dwarphz gig in a local pub at 21:00. Other than one train running three minutes late, on account of the hordes of once a year Xmas Shoppers who all turned up a few minutes before departure still needing to buy tickets, everythinhg ran smoothly. Had I done the same journey buy bus it would have taken twice as long (or more on the way in due to 'big city' traffic gridlock on a Saturday) and cost at least twice as much, plus there would have been no 'onboard comfort station' to relieve pressure on the bladder (which would have been exacerbatted by the potholes and bends). Even without a railcard the cost of a non-discounted Day Return for this journey is less than the basic petrol costs, and it would have cost twice as much again to park the car for the day (not that I would have been able to lawfully drive back after supping all that ale).

Mid-week I have to go up to London for an AGM and Xmas Bash in the evening. I have just purchased outbound & return Advance Single tickets for £28 using my Railcard, and I will be able to work on my laptop on both journeys, which I couldn't do while driving or travelling by coach.

Next week I have a couple of Xmas bashes to attend on consecutive nights up in Yorkshire. Total price of tickets purchased in advance was just £65.65 with my Railcard. Even at £1.05 a litre, petrol costs alone for the trip would be about £75. I could probably shave an hour off the travel time each way by driving if I started my journey very early in the morning to allow skirting around Yam-Yamland before traffic builds up, but I would get no work done while driving and I'd be knackered at the end of the journey.

By letting the train take the strain life is much more rewarding.

My only real grumble with the UK's rail network is that, with the exception of a few slow-running Sleeper services it is not 24/7; but that is down to the Transport Union commissars, who seem to be trying to keep things the way they were back in the bad old days of British Fail.

Bob

PS Having also quite recently travelled by train in Norway, Poland, Germany, France, the Czech Republic and Spain I reckon these days Britain's railways are actually not too bad ... and if it wasn't for NIMBY protestors standing in the way of progress our rail network might even get better.


Tim Cheesman is off-line
14 December 2015 09:48
MrTim
Photographer

Location
United Kingdom
Norfolk
Norwich

The train is always my first choice (I'd prefer to be sat there reading rather than driving), but - recent example - when I had a week's notice of needing to get to Sheffield for the day the prices were something like Train - £80. Coach - £60, (and a travel time of seven hours each way!), Petrol cost £45 (and found somewhere to park for free). I can't justify the vast extra expense! Like I said, it can be fine if you have plenty of notice (I booked train tickets to Birmingham four months in advance for about £15 return when the petrol cost would have been about £50), but that's not always the case!


AGS is off-line
21 December 2015 06:32
AndyGStudios
Photographer

Location
United Kingdom
West Yorkshire
Wakefield

Sod HS2, invest in the Hyperloop


WESTEND PORTFOLIOS is off-linePlatinum Member
22 December 2015 10:06
WESTEND_PORTFOLIOS
Photographer
WESTEND_PORTFOLIOS
Location
United Kingdom
Glasgow
GLASGOW

Quote from MG


They had no conception of where Coventry or Birmingham were in relation tomeach other! :-)





did they not ask you if you had a valid passport for this journey???



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