Railway ticket booking HELL!

  Bald Eagle 15:47 14 Feb 2008

Anyone on this site use railways very often? On this page from the Virgin site they seem to charge different prices for the same type of ticket. click here
There are 2 prices for Value advance single C and also for Value advance single B. There are so many choices it's bewildering! What do you tend to use?

Thanks in anticipation.

  Totally-braindead 15:54 14 Feb 2008

Honestly I use the bus or the plane. I would prefer the train to the bus but the tickets are just confusing.

  anskyber 15:56 14 Feb 2008

I use click here

  Bald Eagle 16:57 14 Feb 2008

anskyber that link still has the same named tickets at different prices.

  jellyhead 17:01 14 Feb 2008

I use this one for national enquires, as i'm not in that region
click here

  spuds 17:17 14 Feb 2008

I think it was the Consumer Association (Which) who conducted a survey a short time ago, regarding the now confusing and varied ways of pricing by the train companies. Even trying to get a ticket at a rail station could prove to be an hit or miss affair depending on the booking hall staff's methods as to selecting cheaper ways and routes. The report made very dismal reading.

  spuds 17:21 14 Feb 2008

Perhaps as a suggestion, long distance bus travel companies like National Express offer very good discount prices, especially for the over 50/60's.

  citadel 18:46 14 Feb 2008

I would use the train if I won the lottery.

  anskyber 19:20 14 Feb 2008

In simple terms it works like this.

Some advanced tickets are bookable sooner than others depending on how far in advance you are booking and over which route.

My understanding for the majority of the Virgin trains is there is an allocation of so many seats withing certain price bands. Naturally people will choose the cheapest ones first then the next cheapest and so on until there are no discounted tickets left and the full price is payable.

Remember these tickets are not refundable and you must travel on the train time chosen. It is not open to pick an earlier train or a later one.

So in a nutshell check on the train you want, be sure you can catch that particular one, and buy the cheapest there is.

  K_elt 20:17 14 Feb 2008

I use click here to sort train times & prices. Seems to be as good as any. Once you have chosen your ticket, it then gives a choice of operators to purchase from.

  Bald Eagle 22:09 14 Feb 2008

Thanks everyone for your input. Basically the system is a mess.

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