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Online train booking is a ‘chuffin’ pain

Created on 06/09/2011 @ 05:54
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Mywelshpool has exposed a huge flaw in the on-line train booking system which expects local passengers to make up to 70-mile round-trips to ‘pick up’ their tickets.
The flaw was exposed by one Caersws reader who booked his ticket on-line the night before travelling and was shocked to find that despite only going from Newtown to Shrewsbury, he was told he must pick up his ticket from Shrewsbury 35 miles away before travelling because it was the nearest collection point.
And this week, a mywelshpool correspondent travelling to Wembley for the Wales v England game today decided to put it to the test and was shocked to discover the flaw.
This is what he experienced.
“Having seen the advert on television I decided to give them a go. I booked three tickets on line from Welshpool to Euston leaving at 6.41am Tuesday which was straight forward enough.
“But then it only gave me the option of collecting from a station with a machine and it said Shrewsbury was the nearest so I clicked on it. I then proceeded to payment thinking that my email confirmation of everything would allow me to travel and perhaps I could hop off and pick up the tickets in Shrewsbury en route.
“To double check I wrote to but was shocked to be told that I must have the actual tickets in hand before I travel or I would be expected to pay on the train.
“I explained that I lived 17 miles from Shrewsbury station so was told that I could collect from any station. However, nowhere in Montgomeryshire was listed in their 900 stations. Once again, it was reiterated that I had to collect the tickets so, on Sunday, I had to drive to Shrewsbury and back just to collect.
“The whole point of booking online is to save time and make it convenient. Travelling an hour on a Sunday just to get tickets is not convenient. Surely the printed confirmation should be enough, just like on airplanes?
“The whole system is flawed and punishes people living in rural communities like Montgomeryshire once again.”
Mywelshpool has double checked and found that passengers travelling from Newtown can have their tickets posted to them for next day delivery, still not helpful though if the customer is travelling the next day.
Wecontacted on Monday for a comment but to date have not received a reply.
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