Wednesday, 19 May 2010

It's Thicker by Rail

Frustrated beyond even my normal abilities to be frustrated by the combination of greed and stupidity that masquerades as a pricing strategy for our railways.

Watford is a mere 60-ish miles away.  It's not a great journey by train, involving as it does a walk across Snorbens (which is the local pronunciation of "St Albans") but it's eminently do-able.  It's handy because it would mean I could work on the train.  I could relax.  It's cool.  I like trains.

But when I get back to the St Pancras line on my way home, after a little trip on the Noddy "Watford and St Albans Abbey" line, and I get on a train that left London after 4pm, the price of a return suddenly goes up to £90 from the relatively sensible £40.  Not if I leave after 4pm - no, it's the time of a train that I connect with that decides this.  This is a rule to stop people daring to travel out of London in the evening rush hour, I presume.  But the price goes up by £50.

So I walk out of the station.  Return home and get in my car.  Wreck the planet and my patience driving down the M1.  Bill my company at 40p per mile PLUS the £8 parking because - irony of ironies - the only place I can park near the office I'm visiting is Watford Junction Railway Station.  And it's still cheaper, and I can leave when I need to not when the Railways would like me to.

I know it's not fashionable today to say this, but there oughta be a lore.

1 comment:

Catriona said...

The thickest thing I ever experienced was a first class single from Leicester to London for half the price of standard class... needless to say first was packed.

Nuts!