I had my first experience of the new first class 'micro cabins' last week and they are truly horrid. There is a 4+4 arrangement at the end of a carriage and no external livery (the first class 'dots') to identify the location.
I have no idea what 'class' carriage it was (442, 444, etc) but it certainly was NOT 'first class'!
Their placement at the end of the carriage, along with the size, makes them very noisy compared to the current first class spaces; which that are situated mid carriage (so the standard class acts as a sound buffer at each end). The seats are so uncomfortable (hard/narrow) and they are set way to close to the table.
Can someone explain the maths behind the number of first class seats in a standard 12 carriage setup; comparing the current setup to this new one? I assume that there will be an overall reduction in first class seats?
What are our rights if there are no first class seats available? The embarrassed & apologetic guard we spoke too said that we should be able to get a refund for the journey? What would the refunded and how do we do this?
If this is the future of SWR first class, I don't see the point in paying 50% more for such a poor experience. Once the guards have been removed, who will actually check tickets on board anyways? Anyone will be able to use 'first class' with a standard ticket and no one will know!
With the poor state of the current service you provide, I thought you would be encouraging first class travel as it attracts a premium; instead you seem to be detering the people who are happy to pay more.
The "ShoWeR of sh**e" SWR Senior Management must be off their heads to have authorised this new layout.
Same on the class 444 smaller seats in a 2 plus 2 rather than 2 plus 1 blah blah what a contempt for customers.I will now travel standard class they don't even bother to respond to objective, well intended feedback given months ago. Bring back Stagecoach
I am sorry to hear of your recent experience with us, Pin. I will certainly pass your comments onto our fleet team to review.
In regards to your right regarding no 1st class -"If you have a first class Ticket and the train service you use is shown as offering first class accommodation at www.nationalrail.co.uk, but when you travel first class accommodation is not provided or is otherwise fully occupied, you may claim a refund. The minimum refund to which you will be entitled will be the difference between the price of the first class Ticket purchased and the cheapest valid standard class walk-up fare available on the service you used. You must write to the Train Company to notify them of your claim within 28 days of the date that you travelled" as per the National Rail Conditional of Travel (http://www.nationalrail.co.uk/National%20Rail%20Conditions%20of%20Travel.pdf)
I hope this helps.
I can only agree. The newly refurbished First on the Class 444 is an absolute disgrace. I must admit that I thought SWR could not do make the first class experience any worse than on the 450s but I must say that they have managed that with the new 444 layout.
Not only are the new 2+2 seats narrow and with terrible seat pitch, the seats closest to the windows are even worse than the aisle seats due to the power sockets and the radiators taking up a significant amount of the seating area. Even worse, the seats are hard and very, very uncomfortable.
I was probably naïve when I thought that SWR would improve on the quite frankly terrible service offered by SWT but it is sad to see things getting even worse.
However, I guess the silver lining for passengers is that trains will be less crowded as people will seek other means of transport whenever possible…
Hi Jack at SWR do senior management get our feedback or are our comments ignored? I ask because I wrote at some length about the deterioration of standards in 1st class and spoken to on board staff who all agree but nobody feeds back anything. Thanks Paul
I'm astounded with the downgrading of first class on the Haslemere-London line, with the so-called train refurbishment. The fact that there was no consultation about this shows the contempt in which SWR must have for their customers, who are paying them around 8000 or so for this 'service'. I have asked for a refund on my first class season ticket, as the seats are now, lets face it, no better than standard. Needless to say I have not had a reply.
This is absolutely disgraceful. I would urge all First Class season ticket holders to complain via all possible channels.