National Rail Train cancelled after OSI and tap back in

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    David Erridge

    Using contactless. 40 minutes allowed for OSI at Paddington from LU to NR. (At commencement of one single journey I tapped in at East Croydon National Rail at 05:37, clearly off peak, and changed to LU at Farringdon, as the Elizabeth Line to Paddington was on strike). At Paddington tapped out from LU at 06:27 and tapped into NR at 06:40 and boarded the 06:50 NR scheduled departure. Train would not start and all passengers told at 06:50 to leave the train, and go back to the concourse

    Understandably all ticket gates were opened, as passengers would have all sorts of tickets, paper, mobile, and contactless was also valid

    Do I tap out. This was only part of a single journey. And then do another tap in no later than 07:07. In theory the best next train (quickest journey) would be another fast train at 07:20, but the NR platform and NR ticket gates might not open until after 07:07

    And of course that would make four taps at Paddington either within less than 40 minutes, or might be nearer 50 minutes. Although a reasonable excuse

    Or do I hope the gates are open when I go for a replacement train – so not do a tap out re the cancelled train, and not tap in through an open gate. And simply continue with my 06:40 tap in

    Or do I go to a different gate, and ask for the gate to open, because I do have that 06:40 tap in, and I want to get a replacement train. Would they believe me

    I imagine once I have done a lot of explaining, TFL will refund much of the money they have taken from me

    But TFL had seen it as 3 journeys. The first journey ended at Paddington.

    The second journey started at Paddington at 06:40, which in theory did not get a tap out

    Although given that I made a further tap in at Paddington at 06:55, it should not be too hard to also treat that as a tap out to the 06:40 tap in for a train that failed to start. And declared it as a totally failed journey and where the rail company were fully to blame

    And the third journey, the tap in at 06:55, which was not linked to the 06:27 commencement to the 40 minute OSI. And furthermore this third tap in is being treated as a new journey and of course no longer off peak

    What could I have done differently to avoid doing battle with TFL. Not my fault the train would not start

    Mike (admin)

    Hi David,

    I fear that this is one of those situations where it’s impossible to predict the best outcome. Ideally you would be let in to catch the replacement train, but if that doesn’t happen then you’re not going to avoid some sort of dicussion. You haven’t said where you were going to and who ran the trains out of Paddington (EL or GWR)?

    The middle journey has been separated out because it was incomplete. I would have hoped that the helpline would listen to your story and match the touches with what happened. I’d be inclined to try again, and ask to be escalated to a manager if they still say no. If you’re still not getting any joy then email to custmer services with the full story again and ask for either a refubd, or a deadlock letter so you can take it to the ombudsman.

    David Erridge

    Hi Mike

    Many thanks. No worries. I am confident re getting the refund(s)

    My journey was to end at Slough. My plan was to travel on the 06:50 GWR first stop Slough from Platform 5 with a scheduled arrival at 07:03. The EL had a strike timetable

    The cancelation announcement was at roughly 06:50. And by the time I had gathered my thoughts and read the screens re a next train, I was fairly convinced that I could not get from platform 5 to Platform 14 to get the 06:56 slower GWR to Slough. Platform 14 is next to the Hammersmith & City platforms, so miles away. If they had put the 06:56 train on any of the other platforms, I think I could have joined it

    There is a common gate line to Platforms 12 and 14. But I am convinced there is not an “inside the gates” route from platform 5 to platforms 12 and 14. As I was keen to get on a train soonest, I decided not to tell the gate line staff member at platforms 12 and 14 that I already had a live tap in. Otherwise everybody would do that and do a doughnut

    As chance would have it and aiming for the common gates to platforms 12 and 14, there was a strike timetable EL train from platform 12 at 07:00 to Slough. Which I joined rather than attempting to run much further to platform 14. I do have a Freedom Pass as I am over 66, and really have given up running

    The 07:00 EL and the next fastest 07:20 GWR were both timetabled to arrive at Slough at around 07:33. The EL train on the slow lines and the 07:20 GWR on the fast tracks

    As it happens both trains were a few minutes late in arriving at Slough, and even after walking across the bridge at Slough the EL train did result in the faster tap out at 07:39, as I could see over my shoulder the arrival of the 07:20 GWR train. I have prints from the GWR website showing this GWR train arrived late

    Hence qualifying for a delay of more than 30 minutes with a 25% claim I can make to GWR

    My contactless record also includes an EL on train Revenue Inspection at 07:35 – and even that is 32 minutes over my intended arrival time of 07:03

    I have not yet shared my contactless record with GWR, which has charges of £5.40, £26.00 for the cancelled GWR train and £9.30 for the final leg

    My contactless record does have a whole string of single journey charges at off peak at a total price of £8.30 for my single journey from East Croydon to Slough, showing tap in times at East Croydon all before 06:00 with tap outs at Slough at various times between 06:57 (each very tight connection between trains being successful, although this connection is understandably too tight for the TFL and other journey planners) and 07:15, so some slight delays on occasions

    Hence a tap out at Slough at 07:39 should be enough to evidence to GWR a delay of over 30 minutes

    Mike (admin)

    Hi David,

    OK, change to the previous answer, to avoid any of this hassle you should have used your freedom pass to get into platform 12-14. There is no penalty for not touching out again and you could have used your contactless card to touch out as normal.

    Also, the £26 charge is because you used the low numbered platforms where the usual next stop is Reading. Good luck getting TfL/GWR to sort things out. Please let us know how you get on.

    David Erridge

    No worries Mike, but thanks for taking an interest

    The Pension Age Freedom Pass is not valid for travel until 09:00 Monday to Friday on TFL services which would include EL, and is not valid for National Rail travel in London until 09:30

    This change was meant to be just temporary from June 2020 to stop overcrowding during Covid. But it is now permanent to save or make money for TFL

    I am certain that the Pension Age Freedom Pass would not let me through the gate line at Paddington at 06:55 on a Thursday, but I could give it a try

    Indeed previously at East Croydon re National Rail I seen about 200 pensioners blocking the routes to the gates, as all awaiting the 09:27 tannoy announcement that the gates are now ready for using the Freedom Pass on National Rail. Always know your customers/passengers

    TFL have said they will respond in about 10 days. And I need a moment to do a delay repay with GWR, I haven’t done one for ages, and they are never much worth the effort

    Mike (admin)

    Of course, my bad. As a recent 60+ holder I should have spotted that.

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