Tuesday, 1 May 2012

More good news from Chiltern Railways but there is a sting in the tail

Chiltern have announced record growth figures for the Birmingham to London Mainline service: year on year, passenger numbers from Birmingham have increased by 41%, from Solihull by 53%, and from Warwick (Parkway) by 32%. All this of course on the back of the £250 million Evergreen 3 investment and without any direct Government subsidy.

Buoyed by this (well-deserved) success, Chiltern have announced further improvements over the reminder of the year:

  • The first of the refurbished Silver Sets will be in service during May, with the existing sets going off for refurbishment over the year
  • Each Silver Set will gain an additional carriage by December
  • An ADDITONAL Silver set will enter service in December
  • The FREE WiFi capability on the Silver sets will be enhanced
  • Catering is to be improved, AND Credit Card facilities introduced from next week (staff training taking place this week)
  • Additional car parking at Solihull and Warwick Parkway
  • Birmingham Moor Street is to gain a bar/restaurant
  • All Services from Birmingham to London will have barcode tickets available through the Chiltern App
So what's the sting? From Sunday 20th May, Anytime Returns from Birmingham to London increase in cost by £10 to £95, and the Business Package fare also increases by £10 to £125. The Off-peak and Super Off-Peak return fares remain at £50 and £25 respectively.

DON'T forget that you only need an Anytime Return if you are planning to arrive in London before 10am Monday to Friday. You DON'T need to buy an Anytime Return for any journey FROM London to Birmingham unless you are planning to return to London before 10am Monday to Friday,

ALSO, should you be able to return up to 4pm or after 7pm (and any time Saturday and Sunday) from London, then buy an Anytime Single at £61 and use a Super Off-Peak return at £25 to come back - saving £9... Likewise, UNLESS you're leaving Marylebone between 4pm and 7pm Monday to Friday AND need to get back to London before 10am Monday to Friday, use the Super Off-Peak / Anytime Single combination.

Simplified fares - I don't think so!

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