What rules apply to the issuing of advance tickets?I should like to know how SWT can justify not issuing Advance tickets for the entire month of December 2019www.southwesternrailway.com/.../advance-ticketsI don’t believe the industrial action is a valid excuse. Rather, from a passenger perspective, it merely adds insult to injury.
Hello Tim, unfortunately Advance Tickets aren't available during industrial action due to the inability to guarantee certain services - this has been the case with previous strike action for the same reason. I'm very sorry that they're not available to purchase.
(I don't seem to be able to reply to Nath directly...)
Hello Tim, I understand the frustration but unfortunately there's not too much that we're able to influence - however, I have passed this feedback on to management. Refunds/amended travel times are still available for those that had purchased Advance tickets prior to the strike being announced, and it's certainly not ideal that SWR are unable to sell discounted tickets during this period. As they are discounted tickets, there isn't really anything that can be done in terms of compensation for those relying on this discount unfortunately.
I'm very sorry if this issue has affected you, and I hope that this doesn't serve as too much of an inconvenience.
Thanks Nash, I accept that it may not be possible to reserve seats on specific trains during industrial action and that this applies to all ticket types.
However, I am not sure that you can term an Advance ticket with the added restrictions that it entails a "discounted ticket". Rather, it is a best price ticket.
Specifically, I am wishing to travel from CLJ to SOA arriving around 11:00 on 6th Dec 2019. The best price that you offer with a Senior railcard now during the industrial action is an off peak single (restricted route- not via London terminals) departing 09:46 arriving 11:04 at a cost of £24:35.
Note how the journey planner anticipates the industrial action AND states that it is correct which begs the question: if you know what will be the disruption, how come you cannot release Advance tickets and allow seat reservations?
Under your new time table for next year, the equivalent train departing 10:07 arriving 11:18 on Friday 10th Jan 2020, has a best price for an Advance Ticket of £5:95. That is a hugely significant saving. If I cannot buy an advance ticket for this journey, I think it would be unfair for me not to be compensated.
Now, if you estimate the total of ALL the Advance tickets on ALL your routes that you would normally sell in December (without Industrial action) for travel in December, how many would that be and, crucially, how much, as a whole, would that represent as a saving for passengers? Or to put it in terms which I suspect SWR may have considered in their decision: how much extra revenue does not releasing Advance tickets in December bring to SWR?
And hence, in this case, I am not convinced by your statement that "At South Western Railway we put our customers at the heart of everything we do and every decision we make." (https://www.southwesternrailway.com/other/about-us/passengers-charter)
Update: If I look for the same ticket now, it explicitly states that the disrupted services have been removed from the journey planner.
Which means you know the timetable and should therefore be able to release Advance tickets.