Caledonian Sleeper train

Dec 9th, 2002, 08:51 PM
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Caledonian Sleeper train

I did a search to check out pictures of the overnight train that goes from london to edinburgh and in all the pictures the 1st class compartment has only 1 that the case? We are 3 adults and a baby and want to go first class so what shall we do?
Dec 9th, 2002, 10:18 PM
Ben Haines
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You are right: British sleeping cars offer doubles in second class and singles in first. They are thus like continental type T2 sleepers, but differ from the usual continental sleepers, which have singles and doubles in first class, and three berth compartments in second class. (Another difference is that berths in Britain are fixed, and berths on the Continent fold away).

So what British couples do is enjoy the lower fare, and book second class. I think you should do the same, one compartment for mother and baby, and one for two adults.

May I throw in a few points ? The train travels for only 7½ hours. To have 8½ hours in bed you should ask when you book for a leaflet that gives you the times of boarding and quitting the train, and use it to say to the conductor when you board (I think at 2300) that you ask for no morning coffee, will leave the train at leaving time (I think 0800), and ask him to knock at 0730, to give you a long sleep.

There is no decent breakfast nowadays at Edinburgh Waverley station, and any breakfast there is inconvenient with all those bags. Your best move is to board a taxi at the station and go off to your hotel for breakfast there. For convenience one of you should quit the train at 0745, walk upstairs and by bridge to the main station assembly area and take a taxi, drive with it to Market Street and the station side entrance, ask the taxi driver to wait, drop back to the train, and lead the whole party, with bags, up by lift to bridge level, then left and up a few steps to the waiting taxi.

Edinburgh is beautiful. Welcome to Britain.

Ben Haines, London

Dec 10th, 2002, 01:09 AM
Geoff Hamer
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British sleepers have only one type of compartment which has two bunks. If you pay the standard-class fare, two people share a compartment; if you pay the first class fare, the top bunk is folded away, and you have a single-berth compartment. Adjacent compartments have a connecting door which is normally locked shut, but if you book both compartments, it can be opened so that you have a sort of suite.
Dec 10th, 2002, 01:17 AM
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Just a point - the compartments are pretty narrow and there's usually just enough room for an adult standing. I'm not sure, therefore, whether or not you'd have room for a baby travel cot or whether Scotrail (who run the services) have some sort of special arrangements for babies (I didn't have a baby the last time I went on the sleeper!)

Brilliant idea about the taxi, though, Ben - I've been several times with luggage to Edinburgh and would never have thought of that!
Dec 10th, 2002, 05:23 AM
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I take it from Ben’s & Keith’s comments that the taxi rank at Waverley is no longer at the platform level. When did this change take place, since I seem to remember it being there 2 years ago?
Dec 10th, 2002, 11:10 AM
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It is still at platform level, but the sleepers usually come in at one of the platforms over the bridge. If you know Waverley, then when you're standing at the platform for the London train and are facing the wall on the other side of the track, there's actually another platform on the other side. To get to it you have to go up the steps on to the bridge which goes out to the bottom of the Scotsman steps. I can't remember the platform number, though!

Basically with all the luggage and a baby it would be a real hassle to go up the steps and then back down again, so Ben's idea is perfect.
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