Overnight on Brit Rail?

Jun 3rd, 2010, 02:20 PM
  #1  
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Overnight on Brit Rail?

Our family will be living in Glasgow Scotland for a few months this summer - 3 adults, 3 kids. We have purchased Britrail tickets - family pass for 4 days. My granddaughter, a 10 year old, has put in a request. She doesn't want to leave Great Britain without having been on a train, in a sleeper, overnight. Any suggestions on how to accomplish this?
I was hoping we could use two of our Britrail day passes to train from Glasgow to London and out into the countryside - then back to London and overnight it back to Glasgow.

If this is possible, how do I find out about sleeper trains - destinations, stations, etc.

Thanks for the help. I'm the gramma and I'm new to this Travel Board experience.

Lynn
LynnJMcL is offline  
Jun 3rd, 2010, 02:31 PM
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Caledonian Sleeper trains | ScotRail
Buy train travel tickets for the ScotRail Caledonian Sleeper Trains, overnight train services operating between London Euston and Scotland.
www.scotrail.co.uk/caledoniansleeper/index.html

Timetables
About the sleeper Seated Sleeper
Map

More results from scotrail.co.uk »
Caledonian Sleeper Train | About the sleeper | ScotRail
Caledonian sleeper facilities include single and twin berth cabins with comfortable beds, blankets and fresh cotton sheets as well as air-conditioning and ...
http://www.scotrail.co.uk/caledonian...e-sleeper.html

The Caledonian Sleepers as they are called - Scotland to London overnight trains (no Saturday night service i believe but nightly otherwise)

I have taken with a pass and you have to pay for the sleeping accommodation of you choice - no six-person compartments i think but adjoining compartments i believe have doors that can be opened

Anyway you may find something about these sleeper trains in these sites i always spotlight to learn about British trains - www.seat61.com often has lay outs of sleeping compartments (several types to chose from often); www.budgeteuropetravel.com and www.ricksteves.com

You should have no trouble booking these on site anytime yet still do so as far in advance once there if you want adjoining compartments, etc.

And on the Scotrail site you will notice some real bargain advance fares that may be cheaper than the passholder fare! Those must be booked weeks in advance to get the limited in number fares.
Palenque is offline  
Jun 4th, 2010, 06:26 AM
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Hi Lynn,

BritRail has a North American Call Center at 1-866-938-RAIL. If you already have a BritRail ticket or pass for the desired route, you only need to purchase the sleeper supplement. I sure ScotRail can also help you out.
ACPRail is offline  
Jun 4th, 2010, 08:45 AM
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The sleeper supplement per person in a two-berth compartment is currently £38. This includes tea or coffee, and a biscuit which are brought to you in the morning. You can pay more on the train for a bigger breakfast, and there is a so-called lounge car where you can buy drinks and food.
GeoffHamer is offline  
Jun 4th, 2010, 09:49 AM
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ACPRail - which is THE BritRail franchise in North America - operating out of Quebec, Canada i believe - what would you charge per person in a 2-berth compartment for pass holders - to compare with the 38 pounds and is there a mailing fee?

ACPRail bought the BritRail franchise some years ago i believe and for sure still operates it.
Palenque is offline  
Jun 5th, 2010, 08:33 AM
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ACPRail - how much would you charge for a person with a pass to cop a double on the Caledonian Sleeper Trains.

You are the equivalent of RailEurope and the mantra on Fodor's is that you guys way overcharge - so let's see in this case.

???
Palenque is offline  
Jun 7th, 2010, 05:47 PM
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Interesting conversation. As a newcomer to all this, I'm grateful for the information and curious about the best way of getting the best trip for the best price. Thanks Palenque for all the info about sleepers and about the trains.
I did go to the ScotRail website but haven't quite figured out what will be the best for our family. Thanks to all for your responses.
LynnJMcL is offline  
Jun 9th, 2010, 08:21 AM
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Lynn - i took my son at about age 10 on several overnight trains in France and he found them so so neat - your granddaughter will always remember the experience - so in any case go for it IMO!

Too bad six is an awkward number as i believe there are compartments for 2 and 4 but perhaps not 3 on these trains (on the Continent there are usually triples)

so perhaps put one adult with three kids? and the other two adults have their own private compartment - if there is a couple that would be good for them!
Palenque is offline  
Jun 9th, 2010, 10:44 AM
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Just don't expect to get much sleep though - IME the idea of a sleeper train is more attractive than the noisy, bumpy reality. Equally unappealing, there's no shower facilities on-board so you'd have to visit the station loos at the other event to freshen up for the day ahead.
Gordon_R is offline  
Jun 9th, 2010, 10:45 AM
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...I meant other end....
Gordon_R is offline  
Jun 9th, 2010, 11:06 AM
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You've got to read W H Auden on that journey!

http://www.sovereignty.org.uk/sitein...und/auden.html
Fashionista is offline  
Jun 9th, 2010, 11:43 AM
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Does the whole family have to cave in to this request? Modern trains go from Glasgow to London in 4+ hours, why waste 7-9 on a sleeper train where you won't get much sleep.
BigRuss is offline  
Jun 9th, 2010, 12:35 PM
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Modern trains go from Glasgow to London in 4+ hours, why waste 7-9 on a sleeper train where you won't get much sleep.>

not everyone is a light sleeper like you - I have taken literally hundreds of overnight trains and have never had a problem sleeping

and my young son never did either

quit saying that all people suffer from the same thing you have.

How many overnight trains have you taken?

Does the whole family have to cave in to this request?> Well you again are making assumptions that are not warranted - did you ask the other family members that

Talk about raining on someone's parade!
Palenque is offline  
Jun 9th, 2010, 12:40 PM
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Hey Palenque - if you bothered to actually read my post, you'll see I said IME (In My Experience). Why the hostility...?
Gordon_R is offline  
Jun 9th, 2010, 12:45 PM
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Gordon i was not even referring to your post, which i read and found polite, but to this blunt one - yes in your experience i can appreciate but not a blanket statement like from BigR that no one never will be able to get a moment of sleep - IME it depends on the individuals and many do not have that problem - and also depends on the tracks and i guess in Britain that would be more problematic

Palenque is offline  
Jun 9th, 2010, 12:51 PM
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Palenque -- you read a lot that isn't there into a short comment and completely miss the point. But you do that a lot on these boards, so that's no surprise.
BigRuss is offline  
Jun 9th, 2010, 12:54 PM
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I did miss the point - i took the point that the whole family was being held hostage by the whims of a little girl and that if the family caves in they will all arrive in London without a wink of sleep - IMO two big assumptions.

What point did i miss?
Palenque is offline  
Jun 9th, 2010, 01:08 PM
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Just FYI, as shown in one of the links Palenque gave:

"Shower facilities (chargeable) are available at Edinburgh Waverley, Glasgow Central and Inverness."

To respond to BigRuss, our reasons included that we won't be wasting waking hours travelling, and it's a great deal for us four to travel London-Inverness and have a place to sleep for 138 GBP
DancingBearMD is offline  
Jun 9th, 2010, 01:20 PM
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Big Russ and Gordon R make salient points in that they - they cannot get any sleep on overnight trains - myself and many others can - so if you are a light sleeper (a few shots of whiskey for the adults could help) then arriving wiped out is no fun.

My argument with Big Russ is that he is extrapolating his/her own experience and automatically applying it to others.

I do wonder how many overnight trains BigRuss has taken - one i would be as he/she would be foolish to take another one after not sleeping at all on the first one.

There is always noise on overnight trains - click claketing of the tracks, etc. so light sleepers should be wary i guess.
Palenque is offline  
Jun 14th, 2010, 11:26 AM
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Just returned from a short vacation up in Northern Arizona and decided to check into the Travel Boards once again.

Who would have thought my question about sleepers could generate such an interesting discussion. Sorry Big Russ, but the whole family is not being "taken hostage" by our 10 year old granddaughter! We think it might be a fun and interesting experience - as Palenque suggests. Sounds like you've had some bad experiences with family vacations, especially in Europe and particularly on the sleeper trains!

What I really like thinking about is Palenque and his son and about reading W.H. Auden!

Seriously, thanks to all for the conversation and for the suggestions. Turns out the sleeper supplement (from the mouth of an agent at ACP Rail is $100 per person (and that's a lot more than the 38 pounds quoted above.)!
LynnJMcL is offline  

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