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Unread 04-01-2009, 03:35   #1
ThomasJ
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Default Passenger experiences over christmas

Hey guys, just thought i'd create a thread to ask about/share passenger experiences over christmas, Travelling on the maynooth line myself a few observations on that line and other lines

- The saturday issue: Hourly services during AM/PM peak hour and trains were half the normal length meaning crushloads, long waits people left behind etc.

- Poor notices: One station was saying a saturday service in operation until the 5th january. This sign was displaying on new years day when a sunday service was in operation and no mention that the last train that night was cancelled and also no mention of the normal weekday services on the 2nd etc. Other stations not saying anything

- Confusion with timetables eg Dundalk on new years day also some maynooth/longford services over christmas.

- DART services only running a sunday service on saturday the 27th and saturday service on friday the 2nd.

- Rosslare operating a saturday service on christmas eve, 29th/30th/31st meaning the next train after the 13:05 was the 18:30ish.

Okay fair enough passenger numbers aren't great over christmas, but these sort of things don't help matters

- Because my train left 1 minute early I (alongwith 7 others) had to take taxis my fair to portmarnock for a christmas party cost €40

Does anyone have any experiences?
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Unread 04-01-2009, 12:28   #2
wobbles
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Regarding services on the Rosslare line.

The 16.40 to Gorey and the 17.25 to Enniscorthy did not operate from the
24th Dec untill the 2nd Jan. The 06.00 ex Gorey did not operate from the 28th Dec untill the 2nd Jan.

No Christmas or New Years timetables seemed to be available in any of the stations on the route except Connolly. The staff when asked were on unsure as to which services were actually operating. The Christmas/New Year services posters on the trains made no mention of the Rosslare line at all.
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Unread 04-01-2009, 13:50   #3
Thomas Ralph
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I travelled on the DART and Dublin-Cork lines a few times each with very few issues.

I heard that there will no longer be special Christmas/bank holiday timetables printed; you'll have to look online.
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Unread 04-01-2009, 16:17   #4
Mark Gleeson
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas Ralph View Post
I heard that there will no longer be special Christmas/bank holiday timetables printed; you'll have to look online.
And the online one is accurate, we have seen over Christmas it was far from accurate

Took a trip to Thurles, usual mess

1. Seat reservation system not on
2. All the curtains have vanished
3. No catering trolley, but buffet open
4. Train host in the wrong uniform, looked really rough could do with a hair cut (anyone who travels Dub-Cork will know which host it is)
5. Cleaners missed a heap of stuff on the floor around the coach

And of course we arrived Thurles 5 minutes early
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Unread 04-01-2009, 16:20   #5
Colm Moore
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I did Dublin-Cork-Dublin and spent New Years Day on the Luas.

Dublin-Cork was largely uneventful, busy, but not packed. As usual no respect for bookings (I didn't book myself). Pleasently surprised with staff going through the trains everal times.

Cork-Dublin was OK, but not good. Persisent rattles but inside and outside the carriage. The train host obtained some toilet tissue to rectify the worst of these. She also had to go chasing the cleaner. A few toilets out of service.

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Originally Posted by Thomas Ralph View Post
I heard that there will no longer be special Christmas/bank holiday timetables printed; you'll have to look online.
I've no particular problem with this, provided they do a consise list of changes and you don't have to search through the journey planner.

I did a tour of the Luas system on New Year's Day. I noted the platforms had been salted due to the cold weather. Some lifts, escalators, lights and TVMs out of order. Ticket checkers warned people about expired monthly and annual tickets rather than fining. Ticket checkers and security staff too lenient with drunks and ticketless teenagers messing about.
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Unread 04-01-2009, 17:02   #6
ThomasJ
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I've no particular problem with this, provided they do a consise list of changes and you don't have to search through the journey planner.
you and i both know thats not going to happen.

Quote:
Ticket checkers warned people about expired monthly and annual tickets rather than fining.
now thats customer service- with the customer in mind.

To be fair to IE, in cases where people forgot their annual passes they would issue the fine and told the passengers if they produce their annual pass they would scrap it.

what about cork and belfast? did they up the prices with it being christmas? their prices are bad enough to belfast (40 euros) vs a 24 hour coach service (22 return) and they no longer have the day return? are the online prices €40 monthly return the same as tickets bought at stations?
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Unread 04-01-2009, 19:52   #7
Thomas Ralph
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IÉ can't increase its standard prices because it's Christmas (although of course the annual increase came in last Thursday on all non-cross-border routes).

Connolly-Belfast is €40 day return Monday-Thursday and Saturday, online or not. €55 standard return.
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Unread 04-01-2009, 20:30   #8
Derek Wheeler
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Gleeson View Post
And the online one is accurate, we have seen over Christmas it was far from accurate

Took a trip to Thurles, usual mess

1. Seat reservation system not on
2. All the curtains have vanished
3. No catering trolley, but buffet open
4. Train host in the wrong uniform, looked really rough could do with a hair cut (anyone who travels Dub-Cork will know which host it is)
5. Cleaners missed a heap of stuff on the floor around the coach

And of course we arrived Thurles 5 minutes early
Was it not predicted by many over 2 years ago, that the new and all swanked up Cork service would eventually succumb to the usual IE slash and burn approach? It most certainly was.
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Unread 04-01-2009, 20:49   #9
Mark Hennessy
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Was it not predicted by many over 2 years ago, that the new and all swanked up Cork service would eventually succumb to the usual IE slash and burn approach? It most certainly was.
I'm sure the shiny new trains that arrived in the early 1970s were the bees knees for the first year or two also.

As always with Irish Rail, the big and shiny stuff loses its lustre when the management are not under threat of losing their job for just getting the very very basics right.

Shiny new trains : over €100m.
Shiny new online booking system : a few million €€€
Showing up to find someone sitting in your reserved seat : Priceless
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Unread 05-01-2009, 11:52   #10
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Default 30th Dec Dundalk

Got the Enterprise to Connolly on the 30th Dec from Dundalk. The only timetables that I could find in Dundalk where the "until further notice" timetables. There was no sign anywhere that said there was a special timetable in operation on the 30th. I checked for a return service, perfect, the 22:29 to Dundalk. Went to Dublin, did my business there, then got back to Connolly for 22:00. The only Dundalk service I could see on the departures board was the 23:20! I was like, no! Not a 80minute wait! Went up to an IrishRail fella and asked (while showing him the service on my timetable), he looked at me blankly. The security guard that he was talking to, said to me, "yeah, a Saturday service is running today".

I rang a buddy of mine to check the irishrail.ie website, and he said the next service was indeed the 23:20, but the train only goes as far as Drogheda, and I will need to change trains. Suffice it to say, the 23:20 service was a service to Dundalk with no changes.

I am not from that part of the country. I am from Cork. I could not get over how slow the train was.

Finbarr.
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Unread 05-01-2009, 17:27   #11
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- Carrick-on-Shannon to Dublin Jan 1, delayed 20 minutes at Edgeworthstown waiting for the train from Dublin. Made some of it up later on

- Gf came up on the 3rd, similar delay, said she got in about 15 minutes late.

- DART to work Jan 2nd, initial panic when I checked the timetable the night before for any changes and saw they'd slashed the morning services. Calmed down a bit the next morning when I realised it was just for that day, and was a Saturday service. Of course, then there was a points failure and everything was running 20 minutes late, all the platform displays were switched off, so lots of people arriving didn't seem to realise it was a Saturday service and had no way of knowing about the delay - the guy in the ticket office wasn't telling anyone, I only found out because a helpful passenger was telling everyone as they arrived.

Good start to the year - 3 DART journeys so far, average delay 7 minutes. Might even beat the 31 hours I lost last year.
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Unread 06-01-2009, 12:36   #12
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Day return Cork-Dublin yesterday. My God, it's got expensive.

Up on the 7:30am

Delayed for 10 minutes in Limerick Junction because of late arrival of Limerick-Limerick Junction train. Extra stop in Ballybrophy "to accommodate some passengers". Still arrived in Dublin on time. The train itself was fine. Trolley and catering car. No problems with staff. Carriage 70% full leaving Cork, 100% full after Thurles.

Back on the 6pm. Punctuality was fine. Train ride was a lot bumpier than the set used on the way up; I also noticed that some of the upholstery on the set was looking worn.. Full catering service. Biggest problem was a group of 10 or so disruptive passengers who got on in Thurles. They roared at each other and swore very loudly causing one woman to move her family to a different carriage. She left to a hail of abuse. A member of Irish Rail staff stood for the rest of the journey at the end of the carriage keeping an eye on them, but didn't say anything. Carriage was 75% full leaving Dublin. 10 mins early.
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Unread 06-01-2009, 12:51   #13
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Whoops.

Just noticed this was under commuter services

Sorry.
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Unread 06-01-2009, 15:40   #14
Thomas J Stamp
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Quote:
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Whoops.

Just noticed this was under commuter services

Sorry.

Now you die!!!!

ha ha ha
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Unread 06-01-2009, 15:45   #15
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Quote:
Biggest problem was a group of 10 or so disruptive passengers who got on in Thurles. They roared at each other and swore very loudly causing one woman to move her family to a different carriage. She left to a hail of abuse.
anti social behaviour is an ongoing problem for Irish rail passengers

there is an atmosphere of total impunity - they know they can get away with alot before the gardai are called and even then they'll just be hauled off the train and can get the next one

RUI will be returning to this topic (even if it is off-topic on this thread
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Unread 06-01-2009, 16:11   #16
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I am not from that part of the country. I am from Cork. I could not get over how slow the train was. Finbarr.
Agreed. It is a painfully slow service. Quite disgraceful that a 50 km journey to Drogheda takes in excess of one hour.

I have given it up and switched to a private bus service. It involved a change in work practices to get the timing right but it is well worth it. 06:46 Drogheda - Pearse takes 70 minutes minimum. 06:50 Slane - O'Connell Street by bus, a journey of almost exactly the same distance, takes 50 minutes.

To get back on topic, the Christmas service on the Drogheda line was poor. In the mornings of December 29-31, a total of about 100 passengers were treated to a full 8 carriage set while evening trains saw a host of shopping bags, prams and zimmer frames packed into 4 carriages. 16:16 Pearse - Drogheda was as packed as any peak commuter service I have seen.
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Unread 06-01-2009, 16:13   #17
Thomas Ralph
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Day return Cork-Dublin yesterday. My God, it's got expensive.

Up on the 7:30am
Just a note that there are cheaper prices available online for all trains (€20/€33 single), and that a day return from Cork-Dublin leaving after 9am Tue/Wed/Thur/Sat is €51.
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Unread 06-01-2009, 16:52   #18
Colm Moore
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Quote:
Originally Posted by comcor View Post
Delayed for 10 minutes in Limerick Junction because of late arrival of Limerick-Limerick Junction train.
This happened on the 28th also.
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Unread 06-01-2009, 17:14   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas Ralph View Post
Just a note that there are cheaper prices available online for all trains (€20/€33 single), and that a day return from Cork-Dublin leaving after 9am Tue/Wed/Thur/Sat is €51.
Fortunately, it was a business trip, so I won't be paying :-), but that also meant I had to be in Dublin by 11am at the latest.

I had been quoted €66 return on the website, so I was surprised that it was more than that at the station. I didn't realise that the website was cheaper for all trains now. I'd thought it was for just the cheap off-peak ones.

I actually didn't book online because I wasn't sure which train I'd go back on (I'd hoped for the 5pm, but it could have been as late as the 7pm). What's the situation with a ticket booked for a particular train and then not used on it. Is it transferable?

Last edited by comcor : 06-01-2009 at 17:17.
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Unread 06-01-2009, 17:32   #20
Colm Moore
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I actually didn't book online because I wasn't sure which train I'd go back on (I'd hoped for the 5pm, but it could have been as late as the 7pm). What's the situation with a ticket booked for a particular train and then not used on it. Is it transferable?
You can use it same day, but obviously you don't have a reservation on the second train.
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