Train Tickets Explained 2016

Post length: 459 words, just over 2 minutes.

UK train tickets were recently redesigned and are slowly being rolled out across the network. The new design, which has actually been floating around since 2014, has just reached the self-service machines in Farnham (although as of writing not the staffed ticket counter). The Association of Train Operating Companies (ATOC) claim the new design is supposed to make tickets “clearer and easier to understand.” With this in mind I thought it was time I updated my previous post explaining what you see on the British train tickets.

train ticket

To and from station names: the stations the ticket is valid to and from.

Validity: simple statement regarding how many times the ticket can be used. I’ve yet to see any variation from “valid for one journey from”

Ticket type: Super Off-Peak Day Return, Anytime Return, Anytime Single, etc. Any one of the bewildering array of ticket types available in the British Rail system.

Time restrictions: another bewildering array of options. An attempt (often very vaguely, as in this example) to explain exactly when the ticket is valid.

Route restrictions: usually pretty simple. Most tickets are valid via “any permitted route” (ie. as long as you don’t double back on yourself), but some additional restrictions may apply such as “not via London.”

Date of travel: the date the ticket is valid.

Ticket part: indicates the number of tickets in the full journey. In this case it’s the outward part of a two-part return and so is 1 of 2. A helpful reminder to make sure you don’t leave half your ticket in the machine!

Direction of travel: for returns either outward or return.

Issuing point number: a coded description of where the ticket was issued. Each ticket machine and sales counter has it’s own number.

Date and time ticket printed: time first, then date.

URL for more details on time restrictions: a URL explaining exactly when the ticket is valid. The biggest improvement in the ticket is this very useful URL. Beware though, BE is a typo in the NR system; it should be 8E!

Ticket number: the serial number of the ticket. This, along with the issuing point number, make the ticket uniquely identifiable in the national rail system.

Railcard used: if any railcard discount has been used to purchase this ticket. Any of the railcards listed on this site would be noted here.

Refund / exchange information: a note about if you are able to get a refund for unused tickets, or an exchange. Most anytime tickets can be refunded or exchanged, while most advanced tickets cannot.

Payment method: how the ticket was paid for. M: cash; X: credit/debit card; W: warrant.

Price: how much the ticket cost.

Class of travel: first or standard class.

Adult / Child: who can travel on this ticket.

Posted on Monday 25th January, 2016 at 9:03 am in Obiter dicta.
It was tagged with , , , , , , .

1 comment

[…] Read the update to this post to cover the new style (2015/2016) tickets. […]

Posted on 25th Jan 2016 at 9:05 am by » Train Tickets Explained.

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