|91125 at Kings Cross in July. Expect big livery changes with new franchise|
|A Virgin Trains Voyager passes through Dawlish in Devon|
|A tilting Pendolino|
New services are planned for Huddersfield, Sundlerand, Middlesbrough, Dewsbury and Thornaby, with extra services elsewhere on the route.
However I have my doubts about all this and it stems around cost. There is a commitment to reduce Standard Anytime fares by 10%. However it doesn't say when from and fares will be rising in Januray again in any case. With East Coast in Government hands it will have been run more on a not for profit basis. So let's see how much it costs to go London to Edinburgh on East Coast compared with London to Glasgow Virgin West Coast. I'll compare prices travelling tomorrow, a month's time and two months time. I'm typing this as I find the fares so could easily look an idiot but it's meant to be entertaining!
Virgin West Coast
London Euston - Glasgow Central depart 28/11 return 1/12 total cost £108.80
London Euston - Glasgow Central depart 27/12 return 29/12 total cost £94.80
London Euston - Glasgow Central depart 30/1 return 2/2 total cost £42.00
Actually that's not bad but suppose I got an emergency call tomorrow morning and had to get up there quick with no chance of buying online in advance. If I travel off peak a Standard Single from London to Glasgow is £129.60 and if I have to leave early it will cost me a staggering £176.00
Now for East Coast and it had better be cheaper or I'm going to look a right numpty!
London Kings Cross - Edinburgh depart 28/11 return 1/12 total cost £115.40
London Kings Cross - Edinburgh depart 27/12 return 29/12 total cost £128.60
London Kings Cross - Edinburgh depart 30/1 return 2/2 total cost £62.70
A standard single is £151.00 but that does come with a free 1st Class upgrade assuming there are seats available.
So as you can see I'm a numpty, and contrary to what I thought West Coast is cheaper in all but the anytime standard single. Which means of course that knocking 10% off the price really won't mean that much at all. Of course I could go into season tickets and all that but really can't be bothered!
So I change my tact - will Virgin Trains East Coast make their advance fares as attractive as West Coast. It will be interesting to see.
Of course one thing that I am disappointed over is when I saw Stagecoach mentioned I hoped that they might extend their Megatrain services to include East Coast.That is obviously not going to happen but Megabus remain by far the cheaper option if you have the stamina for it.