Fare oddity Shepperton to K. Olympia

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STEVIEBOY1

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Hi, all being well I shall be travelling on a Saturday on the 1010 am train from Shepperton to Clapham Junction on SWR & connect onto London Overground or Southern to Kensington Olympia, returning early the same afternoon. I have a Network South East Card. I was looking into seeing if it would be cheaper to either have a through ticket from Shepperton to Kenny O. or Shepperton to Clapham Jct and then contactless to Olympia. When I checked, it appears that a through fare is cheaper at £ 7.05, but just to Clapham jct is it £ 8.25 for a shorter journey.!! Is this one of those odd things that happen sometimes, a shorter journey is more expensive than a longer one?
 
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yorkie

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Yes, the Super Off Peak Return is £5.30 to Kensington Olympia:
http://www.brfares.com/#faredetail?orig=SHP&dest=KPA&rlc=NEW&rte=700&tkt=SOH

And it's £6.55 to Clapham Jn:
http://www.brfares.com/#faredetail?orig=SHP&dest=CLJ&rlc=NEW&tkt=SOH

Yes it can be cheaper to buy a ticket for a longer journey. There are many occasions when this can be the case.

There are many reasons why this can happen. Sometimes train companies increase the price of the lower priced ticket to match the higher priced ticket, when they are made aware of this, if they are able to do so (ie. if the fare is within their control and is not regulated).
 

Bletchleyite

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Another common one along these lines is an outboundary Travelcard being cheaper (and more flexible[1]) than a day return to a station within Z1-6. This is certainly true for quite a few destinations from MKC.

[1] Far more flexible in one case I use often, as it doesn't restrict you to via Kensington Olympia. But even if it was Any Permitted the Travelcard allows you options like crossing London by bus instead of Tube.
 

mervyn72

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I found one last year where Ilkeston to Sheffield single is £11.40 but go one stop further to Meadowhall and it goes down to £10.50.
 

Merseysider

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I found one last year where Ilkeston to Sheffield single is £11.40 but go one stop further to Meadowhall and it goes down to £10.50.
Well that’s not gonna last long now, is it?

Edited to add that people often forget that this forum is fully public. Any fare oddities will be picked up and ‘rectified’ swiftly.
 

RJ

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Well that’s not gonna last long now, is it?

Edited to add that people often forget that this forum is fully public. Any fare oddities will be picked up and ‘rectified’ swiftly.

Very true - the only ones I post about are the ones I don't care about! There are some really juicy examples which have been in the system for years without rectification - so anything you have even the remotest possibility of using in future should be kept to yourself and those you trust!

That said, well done to anyone who does find anomalies like this. But it's one of those things where unless you want recognition for being able to spot them, nobody except the TOCs benefits from them being publicised. Might be a better idea to set up a secret group and invite people to it!
 
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Peter Mugridge

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That said, well done to anyone who does find anomalies like this. But it's one of those things where unless you want recognition for being able to spot them, nobody except the TOCs benefits from them being publicised. Might be a better idea to set up a secret group and invite people to it!

How would anyone be able to stop the TOCs from planting a member in the secret group...?
 

gazthomas

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Why can't TOCs run their own query on the fares database to identify these anomalies? Surely it can't be that difficult
 

RJ

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How would anyone be able to stop the TOCs from planting a member in the secret group...?

You can't really - best to know the people you share with then trust that they won't work against the interests of the group. I've been invited to private groups in other hobbies and the setup can work well.

How thoughtful ;)

Why, thank you!

If I find things myself, I'm not treading on anyone's toes by sharing them as far as I'm concerned. My focus has moved on from Routeing Guide creativity - I'm more about finding mispriced tickets which wouldn't cause a ticket inspector to bat an eyelid nowadays. And there are usually loads of them that undercut the set price for any given journey.

Why can't TOCs run their own query on the fares database to identify these anomalies? Surely it can't be that difficult

Facilities exist for them to do so. I'm not sure if it was made public by mistake, but once on National Rail Enquiries I input a journey and on the results page was an alert saying I could save money by buying a ticket to a slightly further destination!

Anomalies only seem to be a problem worth dealing with it they are publicised or brought to the attention of retail management, who are otherwise busy with other things. Not sure TOCs have the resources to pay for someone just to hunt specifically for anomalies which aren't losing the company money.
 
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robbeech

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There’s signs up at Gainsborough Lea Road telling people to buy a ticket to a destination a few stops further if they want a particular city.
These aren’t just stuck up, these are inside the frames on the platform.
 

infobleep

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You can't really - best to know the people you share with then trust that they won't work against the interests of the group. I've been invited to private groups in other hobbies and the setup can work well.



Why, thank you!

If I find things myself, I'm not treading on anyone's toes by sharing them as far as I'm concerned. My focus has moved on from Routeing Guide creativity - I'm more about finding mispriced tickets which wouldn't cause a ticket inspector to bat an eyelid nowadays. And there are usually loads of them that undercut the set price for any given journey.



Facilities exist for them to do so. I'm not sure if it was made public by mistake, but once on National Rail Enquiries I input a journey and on the results page was an alert saying I could save money by buying a ticket to a slightly further destination!

Anomalies only seem to be a problem worth dealing with it they are publicised or brought to the attention of retail management, who are otherwise busy with other things. Not sure TOCs have the resources to pay for someone just to hunt specifically for anomalies which aren't losing the company money.
Some TOC staff take a view the if your undercutting the fare, that isn't good.

Do you use database SQL scripts to find the miapriced tickets?
 

yorkie

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Do you use database SQL scripts to find the miapriced tickets?
Mispriced?

Are talking about the clearly mispriced fares such as the £1 fares between Borders stations and destinations as far away as Wick and Kyle of Lochalsh? That's surely not within the scope of this thread.

If you are talking about the likes of CostlyCountry Trains charging £100 from Largeville to Cityville compared to CheaperRail charging £80 from Smallville to Tinyville valid via the aforementioned fictional places, because the former increased their fares at an unjustifiably high rate since privatisation, it is not really possible to find these simply by querying the fares database, and it's not clear these are 'mispriced' but if they are, the higher fares are the ones that are 'mispriced' in my opinion ;)
 
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infobleep

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Mispriced?

Are talking about the clearly mispriced fares such as the £1 fares between Borders stations and destinations as far away as Wick and Kyle of Lochalsh? That's surely not within the scope of this thread.

If you are talking about the likes of CostlyCountry Trains charging £100 from Largeville to Cityville compared to CheaperRail charging £80 from Smallville to Tinyville valid via the aforementioned fictional places, because the former increased their fares at an unjustifiably high rate since privatisation, it is not really possible to find these simply by querying the fares database, and it's not clear these are 'mispriced' but if they are, the higher fares are the ones that are 'mispriced' in my opinion ;)
I don't know as RJ didn't state what he meant by mispriced.
 

RJ

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Some TOC staff take a view the if your undercutting the fare, that isn't good.

Do you use database SQL scripts to find the miapriced tickets?

I always praise customers who have a legitimate way of saving on the through fare.

Yes, the database is a powerful tool for identitying anomalous fares. I was going to publish a "Fares Analysis Friday" series of articles to prompt discussion on some things I considered to be interesting in there, but am sitting on them for the time being.

As for mispriced tickets, I'm not talking about token £1 fares. It's more about those fares which against logic, offer a nice saving on a through fare, such as that shown in the OP. A 15% saving is a 15% saving.
 
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bb21

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As for mispriced tickets, I'm not talking about token £1 fares. It's more about those fares which against logic, offer a nice saving on a through fare. For example, a Hinckley - London Terminals Any Permitted weekly is £85 cheaper than a Leicester - London Terminals weekly, £23 cheaper than a Nuneaton - London Terminals weekly and £20 cheaper than a Hinckley - London Terminals via Nuneaton weekly. If I was in Leicester or Nuneaton then I'd welcome the saving and the opportunity to visit Hinckley at no additional cost.
I was trying to keep that one quiet. :D
 

infobleep

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I always praise customers who have a legitimate way of saving on the through fare.

Yes, the database is a powerful tool for identitying anomalous fares. I was going to publish a "Fares Analysis Friday" series of articles to prompt discussion on some things I considered to be interesting in there, but am sitting on them for the time being.

As for mispriced tickets, I'm not talking about token £1 fares. It's more about those fares which against logic, offer a nice saving on a through fare. For example, a Hinckley - London Terminals Any Permitted weekly is £85 cheaper than a Leicester - London Terminals weekly, £23 cheaper than a Nuneaton - London Terminals weekly and £20 cheaper than a Hinckley - London Terminals via Nuneaton weekly. If I was in Leicester or Nuneaton then I'd welcome the saving and the opportunity to visit Hinckley at no additional cost.
I understand now. That of course only really works, I'm assuming, as it's a season ticket allowing travel in any direction.
 

RJ

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I understand now. That of course only really works, I'm assuming, as it's a season ticket allowing travel in any direction.

The ticket is fully valid either way into London - but the season tickets from intermediate interchange points are priced higher.

I spent a half hour or so looking at season fares into London one day. I suspect many people in the South East who commute into London could be saving quite a bit due to anomalous fares and fares policies that are not really advertised. If I could save even £20 a week by spending a couple of minutes looking into ticket options then I would, but each to their own.
 
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bb21

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I have no way of knowing what's useful to others and what isn't - it's just one illustrative example I found that I had to hand. I've removed that part of the post.
It was no biggie, just one of those I have in a list. I don't currently use that one as I have a better value option. ;)
 

robbeech

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If I could save even £20 a week by spending a couple of minutes looking into ticket options then I would, but each to their own.

Most would feel the same way but it appears that whilst you are happy to save money you’re less happy if other people do.
 

Kite159

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Most would feel the same way but it appears that whilst you are happy to save money you’re less happy if other people do.

Pricing Managers watch this forum, so if some of them get made public, they might disappear (either with an amendment to the Routing Guide, break of journey restrictions getting added or fare increased in the next round of 'fare reviews'.
 

RJ

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Most would feel the same way but it appears that whilst you are happy to save money you’re less happy if other people do.

Is that because I suggest it's better to keep discussion of anomalies on private groups, or because I've shared examples of anomalies in public?

People like reading commentary on things which they have influence over. This forum is read by the RDG and TOC retail teams, who are paid to correct anomalies. Posting them in public gets them shut down quickly, which means it doesn't actually help anybody, but does harm those who are able to derive benefit from the saving. Because the net effect is negative, it's discouraged.

It's not about being unhappy about other people saving money. It's also wrong to assume that most people are happy to trade a few minutes for research on saving on their journey. I think most people don't want to have to put in any work at all to reduce their fare and would rather the fare would just be set cheaper in the first place.

Also, whilst I'm not a member of any railway ticketing private groups, I am in other areas which similarly involve legal ways of beating the system for financial or other benefits. The memberships tend to be very open with knowledge and experience and everyone is better off for it, whilst prolonging the shelf life of the loopholes being discussed. That isn't something that's achievable in public.
 
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crehld

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Pricing Managers watch this forum, so if some of them get made public, they might disappear (either with an amendment to the Routing Guide, break of journey restrictions getting added or fare increased in the next round of 'fare reviews'.
Indeed and for that reason I personally refrain from posting the few significant oddities I'm aware of. If you want to find out more then come along to one of the forum meals / meet ups and get to know people.

But I will add this goes both ways, and occasionally anomalies identified on the forum are rectified to the benefit of passengers. I joined the forum to query why Crewe to Hellifield via Lancaster wasn't deemed valid in journey planners despite it being the shortest and quickest route. Within a week of me posting the thread the routing guide was updated and suddenly I could swap the expensive anytime returns for cheaper advance fares. This all goes to show the forum is closely watched.

Anyway, as others have said these oddities exist everywhere. Some are rather advantageous and best kept to yourself and those you trust, most others will only save you the odd 50p of quid here and there and are common knowledge. Indeed the fragmented and incoherent approach to ticketing in this country, where multiple operators are responsible for setting the prices of different tickets, means this outcome is going to be inevitable. In most cases front line staff are well aware of oddities in their local area and will freely offer advice on alternative tickets which may suit your needs. For example, turn up at Crewe station and ask for a day return to Birmingham and a lot of the time you'll be offered an alternative that'll saves you a few quid.
 

RJ

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Indeed and for that reason I personally refrain from posting the few significant oddities I'm aware of. If you But I will add this goes both ways, and occasionally anomalies identified on the forum are rectified to the benefit of passengers. I joined the forum to query why Crewe to Hellifield via Lancaster wasn't deemed valid in journey planners despite it being the shortest and quickest route. Within a week of me posting the thread the routing guide was updated and suddenly I could swap the expensive anytime returns for cheaper advance fares. This all goes to show the forum is closely watched.

Anyway, as others have said these oddities exist everywhere. Some are rather advantageous and best kept to yourself and those you trust, most others will only save you the odd 50p of quid here and there and are common knowledge. Indeed the fragmented and incoherent approach to ticketing in this country, where multiple operators are responsible for setting the prices of different tickets, means this outcome is going to be inevitable. In most cases front line staff are well aware of oddities in their local area and will freely offer advice on alternative tickets which may suit your needs. For example, turn up at Crewe station and ask for a day return to Birmingham and a lot of the time you'll be offered an alternative that'll saves you a few quid.

It's definitely a positive reflection on the industry that the social media is used to pick up on things that can be changed in the passenger's favour. Such initiative ought to be recognised. As for the negative changes, that rather depends on which side of the fence you're sitting, but it's always good to keep an ear close to the ground.
 
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