Train fare included £16.60 for walking between two stations in Birmingham
I could save the money if I bought two single tickets for my journey from Bristol to Stratford – but Trainline.com didn’t tell me that
I had to go from Bristol to Stratford-upon-Avon, booking through thetrainline.com. The one-way ticket price came up at £50.50. Just before confirming the payment I clicked the “Show journeys” button. It showed the route as being from Bristol Temple Meads to Birmingham New Street, then from Birmingham Moor Street to Stratford. In between the Birmingham stations the carrier was “Foot”. I wondered what the cost breakdown of the journey was, so checked the price of separate tickets. Here’s the answer: Bristol to Birmingham: £26.20; Birmingham to Stratford: £7.70. Total: £33.90. I would have been charged £16.60 for the privilege of walking from New Street to Moor Street station. Perhaps thetrainline.com is trying to drum up cash to fund a rail link? HG, Grantham, Lincs
It’s bizarre that buying separate tickets for each leg of a journey can save a hefty percentage of the cost of a through ticket – you don’t even have to get off at those stations. It’s allowed under the National Conditions of Carriage. Naturally, train operators dislike this dodge and so these bargain options don’t tend to be flagged up on websites. The Trainline tells me it does not set ticket prices and ignores the point that it doesn’t refer passengers to the cheapest available deals. Cross Country, the rail operator, explains that the two-ticket option was cheaper in your case because there were still discounted advance tickets available on the Bristol to Birmingham leg, whereas all the advance through tickets from Bristol to Stratford had sold out. Had the advance tickets on the first leg also sold out, the two-ticket option would have worked out £10 more expensive.
Source: Guardian Transport