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Britain by Train and BritRail Passes for the Clueless

Britain by Train and BritRail Passes for the Clueless

Old Apr 23rd, 2010, 11:27 AM
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andeesue - thank you - and yes the early bird does get the worm in these matters - folks who naively just walk up and buy tickets on day of travel could literally pay many times more!
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Old Apr 23rd, 2010, 07:59 PM
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Well, actually, the price was even cheaper a few days after I bought tickets when they were released at what I thought would be the lowest price. Now, my next segment's available, but the cheap fares are for noon and later and I'd save 12 GBP, but I'd rather have the extra two hours earlier in London. I may just wait a day or two and see if those fares come down like the Edinburgh-York ones did.
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Old Apr 24th, 2010, 06:30 AM
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Andeesue - there is yet one more site to search that i forgot to mention - www.thetrainline.com - similar to nationalrail.co.uk but another source to check - i do think they charge a 5 pound booking fee - or did.

Trying to wait for the best fare is a tough choice because sometimes the other fare may vanish IME and you may pay higher - but since you are so far out i would as this far out unlikely the allotment of lower-tiered price tickets would be exhausted - unless there is a football match, etc somewhere.
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Old Apr 24th, 2010, 08:18 AM
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Your input is so appreciated, Palenque.
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Old Apr 26th, 2010, 07:00 PM
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Patience paid off... the advance ticket fare was 22.50 the other day for York/London, but I decided to wait several days to see if the really cheap fares showed up as they had for my Edinburgh/York. They are now 11.25 (I could even have booked them for 10 with a discount on East Coast Trains, but couldn't get the right option for ticket pickup to work. I won't complain! Great fare! Lesson learned: once the fares are released, wait several days (though of course this may backfire
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Old Apr 27th, 2010, 07:29 AM
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Andeesue - thanks for your edification of your process - i have learned that ticket prices can indeed come down!

Have a nice journey - if at all interested in trains stop by the National Rail Museum in York - it is right by the York station and free - old trains, royal trains, etc.
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Old May 3rd, 2010, 09:11 AM
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"The fully flexible train fare London to Holyhead is 120 pounds or about $190 or so in 2nd class"
Yes this is correct. But from anywhere in Britain you can buy 2nd class £30.50 to Dublin via Holyhead. You don't have to take the boat. I know it doesn't make sense, but there it is. And on many Virgin trains from Euston to Chester or Holyhead you can upgrade to first class if you want, I think it costs about a fiver. I should keep quiet about this in case someone from network rail decides to raise the price to Ireland.
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Old May 5th, 2010, 12:29 PM
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Ricardo - yup though incongruities are always possible it seems. Thanks for the post!
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Old May 7th, 2010, 09:22 AM
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MORE AND MORE 'QUIET' CARS

With mobile phones often in constant use it seems some train cars become rather noisy with all the chatter. And though i for one rather enjoy the insight into the often mundane things discussed - like what to bring home for dinner - for folks who like silence in their train car then look for the Quiet Cars - marked so and perhaps having a picture of a mobile phone with a red circle and line thru it.
If reserving seats you can request one in the quiet car - more and more Brits it seems are choosing quiet cars thus more of them are marked so.
Quiet cars however do not mean you cannot talk normally - just keep all noise down.
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Old May 7th, 2010, 09:48 AM
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Yes, it's a nice idea, but in practice nobody takes much if any notice of these "quiet carriages". IME the average under-25 rail passenger is so fixated with his/her mobile/Ipod that they either don't comprehend the signs or - assume it can't possible apply to them and their mates. If you're game enough to challenge a bunch of lagered-up chavs with their mobiles pressed to their ear, then that's up to you, but not many would feel comfortable doing so.
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Old May 31st, 2010, 12:29 PM
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PalenQ

I have been away and now I am trying to work on trains.
I am so frustrated because I need to go from York to Conwy or Llandudno junction on a Friday. Each time I put a Friday date into the journey planner, the Saturday schedule appears on the Journey Planner.
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Old May 31st, 2010, 12:52 PM
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Oh, PalenQ, I am so sorry I figured it out!!!!!!!!!! Thanks anyway.
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Old May 31st, 2010, 05:27 PM
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PalenQ
As I mentioned I just got back from being with grandchildren. To refresh - my husband and I are in our 60s, travel light, love art, things unusual and crazy and of course food. We are flying to Glasgow on August 17th and are returning to New York from London on Sept 8th. Most of the trip is planned. Now I must work on the specifics.

Glasgow ( 2 nights)
Train or bus to Inverness ?
Inverness (1 night)
Bus to Granton on Spey
Granton on Spey ( 2 nights)-Highland Games
Bus or train to Edinburgh?
Edinburgh (3 nights) Tickes for Tattoo
Bus or train to York.
York ( 2 nights)
Bus or train to Conwy?
Conwy ( 1 night)
( Trying to decide to go straight to Bath or visit somewhere else in Wales. Considered Machynlleth and CAT
Bus or train to Bath?
Bath ( 2 nights)
Bus or train to Moreton on Marsh?
Moreton on Marsh ( 2 nights)
Bus or train to London?

Home


Would love to fit Oxford in that schedule. Where would you put it?

I would love any suggestions. Point to point tickets, rail pass etc?

Thanks again for your help in advance.




Edinburgh ( 3 nights)
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Old Jun 1st, 2010, 06:38 AM
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milliebest - i will give my best try to answer your queeries (and hopefully others will give their angles - more opinions the better IME)

and as i told you or others on another thread if 60 and over be sure to look at the Senior first-class Brit-Rail Pass - first-class is so so much more leisurely than in an oft IME very crowded standard (2nd) class.

Well gotta catch a train but will be back soon.

If you are staying in Moreton-on-Marsh then Oggsford would be a very short day trip from there and is also a short day trip from London.
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Old Jun 4th, 2010, 09:36 AM
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Jog on Mar 15, 10 at 7:45pm
Palenque

Any news on extra payment on BritRail pass from Ashford Intl. to St Pancras on fast trains (Southern)? I already have the pass. Have already planned my trip and am well up on the price of the pass, so paying a small supplement wouldn't hurt I suppose.>

Jog - i am determined to find out as i still do not know - will call Byron at budgeteuropetravel.com as he will know - i was reading thru above posts when yours jogged my memory about your queery.

If you are still around and have come back and have first-hand info please post it! thanks.
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Old Jun 12th, 2010, 10:23 AM
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Palenque,

I have been doing my homework and am about to make major decisions. If you are back and have a chance, I value your opinion tremendously.

Here are my findingsI am using L because I don't know how to do the pound sign)

1.) Glasgow : (Train to Inverness either L10:30 or L18:60 depending on time)


2.)Inverness: (Bus to Grantown on Spey (This has been a challenge to find the bus -Stagecoach The website doesn't work.)

3.)Grantown on Spey to Edinburgh (Bus or train to Edinburgh?)
Train is L10:30

4.)Edinburgh to York: L19

5.)York to Conwy : Train L49:30

6.)Conwy to Bath: L73.50

7.)Bath to Moreton in Marsh : L7

8.)Moreton in Marsh to London : L26.90

Would you suggest a three day senior Brit Rail for ( York to Conwy;Conwy to Bath and Moreton in Marsh to London) and just to web tickets for the others?

Thanks,

Mille
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Old Jun 14th, 2010, 09:32 AM
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Well it would see to be - a 3-day flexipass would cost p.p. in 2nd cl $199 and in first - senior $249 (no senior rate on 2nd class passes)

so your three long day fares are about 150 pounds (me either can't make pound sign!) or about $225 at current exchange rates - would be about $25 cheaper in 2nd class in first class you'd pay about $25 more than the second class ticket fare but if you compared to first class tickets then you'd save a lot i think

i assume your fares are for second class

Personally if point to point for those three days cost 150 quid or $225 then i'd go for the $249 p.p. first class senior pass - on longer train rides there is much more of a difference between classes than on shorter trains like those in Scotland - long-distance trains have a great difference in classes - regional ones barely any difference many times.

As the 4th day on a BRail Flexipass is $50 in 2nd class and $55 in first you are smart to buy the others point to point as you have found out above.

the beauty of the pass again IMO is you can just get up head to the station and hop any train - often those unrestricted fares are absurdly high - making a pass a great deal if you desire flexibility.

Cheers.
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Old Jun 15th, 2010, 09:36 AM
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.)York to Conwy - i like Conwy as a base (or Llandudno, a seaside resort a few miles away - there is so much to see and do within a short train and or bus ride - the lures of North Wales:

The Great Orme -Llandudno lies at the foot of it and you can see its summit from Conwy (Conwy is a fine fine walled ancient-looking town) - Caernarfon Castle - Mt Snowdon - Steam train ride to summit is one of most thrilling trains rides i've done - ditto for the walk down) - the Conwy Valley up to Ffestinog where a tiny steam train goes thru old mining country - neat places like Betws-y-Coed and Beaumarais Castle - a stunning castle on the coast - all a short day trip by train and or bus from Conwy - investigate the one day travel card for the area.
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Old Jun 16th, 2010, 12:35 PM
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If in Conwy then try to go to Llandudno (ccllandudno kind of pronounced) and hop the antique tramway that goes up to the summit of the fabled Great Orme - a kind of huge rock sticking out into the North Sea - there are mountain goats up top and lots of sheep and terrific views for miles around - even to legendary Blackpool and its iconic Blackpool Tower far across the sea.

I actually hiked up along the course of the old tram so if a hiker it's not that hard a climb but steadily uphill.


he Great Orme in Llandudno North Wales
Describing the Orme and its history, archaeology, ecology, mining, shipwreck, flora and fauna including the long established herd of feral goats.
www.llandudno.com/orme.html

Great Orme - Aerial Cable Car - Tramway - Marine Drive
www.greatorme.org.uk/

Llandudno - Great Orme - The Summit Experience - North Wales UK
Later, much re-built as 'The Summit Hotel', it served as the 19th hole for the Great Orme Golf Club that closed in 1939. The site of the golf course is now ...
www.greatorme.org.uk/summit.html


Great Orme Tramway : The Cable Car of Wales
Jul 1, 2004 ... One of three systems in the world in which "cable cars" operate on city streets. The others are in San Francisco and Lisbon.
www.cable-car-guy.com/html/ccgreatorme.html
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Old Jun 17th, 2010, 12:56 PM
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milliebest - i am taking the opportunity to expand on North Wales which was going to be the next stop on my sample Britain by Train itinerary embedded throughout my above posts.

I based in Llandudno and found it to my liking - a slightly fading seaside resort but also one that hops at night andon weekends as a night spot and shopping magnet.

Some will prefer the quiet of quiet as a church mouse Conwy - others may prefer a big of brashness that Llududno provides - they are only a few miles apart so anyone staying in one should also take a look at the other.

Conwy is though exceptional and the small town with old walls and castle of your dreams that many folks only dream about staying in but actually never do!

Visit Llandudno - The Official Website For Hotels, Guest Houses ...
Llandudno, the biggest and best loved seaside resort in Wales with its blue flag beaches, Victorian pier, theatre, ski Llandudno, cable car.

Where to stay - Request a Brochure - Events - Things to see and do
www.visitllandudno.org.uk/

Llandudno Conwy North Wales UK - Queen of North Wales Resorts
Tourist guide to Llandudno, its pier, promenade, town trail, marine drive, Great Orme, Victorian extravaganza and excursions.
www.greatorme.org.uk/
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