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a VirtualTourist member from Moscow


'Anytime' tickets

I am still in the process of buying tickets for my England journey and I've got one more question on train tickets. Does 'anytime' ticket means that I really can travel on any train that day? For example, I'm looking for London-Hastings tickets. I see that there is 'anytime' at 9:18 for 96.25 pounds (for our group), 'off-peak' at 9:37 for 65.20 and 'anytime' at 9:45 for 55 pounds. Can I buy the one for 55 pounds and take an earlier train?
Another question. If I plan London-Hastings-Brighton-London, I guess there is no way for me to take some ticket and 'break' my journey at Hastings and then go on to Brighton and back to London? I'll have to buy separate tickets L-H, H-Br, Br-L?

11 Answers

answered by
Mary Smith from Leicester

Here is the info about anytime tickets:

But I do think it is a little misleading, because 'anytime' ticket prices vary. You are free to return on any train but you must start off (as I read it) on the train you bought tickets for (otherwise there is no point in having different prices for different departures). I personally wouldn't risk using the 0945 ticket on an earlier train. You don't just pay the difference if you are found to be travelling on the wrong type of ticket; you pay the full fare price for the train you are on. :-(

It is also misleading in that you can travel at 'anytime' on any subsequent train...but only along that particular route.

I was amazed to discover that you can, apparently, break your journey without buying another ticket BUT it must be along the route of travel. The Hastings>London train does not, for example, go through Brighton so that type of break would no be feasible.

If you click on 'details' by a particular departure and then on 'calling points' you will see the stops where you can break your journey on that particular route (but only if you have an anytime ticket).

As I understand it you will indeed need to buy L-H, H-N, B-L tickets.

It might be worth investigating the coach for Brighton>London. There are sometimes very cheap fares on some routes/departures if you book in advance, and it's not a particularly long journey.

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Moscow

Thank you, Leics. I read those articles, that was why I asked this question. According to the I can take earlier train, but it doesn't sound logical. As for the coaches I saw that usually they take much more time then train. Or may be it's different for that particular route. Thank you. I'll explore it.

answered by
Mary Smith from Leicester

I've just rung National Rail to clarify this.

There is a price difference on this particular route between the anytime ticket for high-speed services to St Pancras, and the other services to other London stations.

You cannot use the cheaper anytime ticket on the high-speed trains. So you can use the cheaper anytime ticket on an earlier trains as long as they is *not* the ones going to St P.

But you may find a cheap day return is better value anyway. They start at 27.60GBP, as opposed to the 50.60GBP anytime.

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Albufeira

Anytime does mean anytime - off peak usually means after about 9.30am weekdays (varies by route) but off peak is valid at any time at weekends and on public holidays.

There is as said above a routing difference between London - Hastings which affects the price. If you use the High Speed Train London St Pancras to Ashford then the local train to Hastings it will cost more and not take much less time overall than the 'classic' route from London Charing Cross via Tonbridge.

I cannot think of a means of baffling the system to avoid buying separate tickets for each leg of your particular journeys. The stations are normally gated, meaning you have to put your ticket into a slot to open the gate. If it's not valid stand by for an interesting conversation with revenue protection staff. The on board ticket inspectors are pretty efficient also.

I'm assuming you are using the 'Group Save' fares.

I am however wondering why anyone would wish to visit Hastings and Brighton in one day!

answered by
Mary Smith from Leicester

I had to phone them (I think I may have been phoning India) because I was totally bemused as to why there was a price difference in anytime tickets.

I never use those particular tickets, so didn't really know the ins and outs. I agree trying to buck the system is really not worthwhile.

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Swanland

Why not consider a Southern Day Save ticket? 1 day - adult £12. Accompanied children £1 each . Group (up to 4 adults or children) £24.
You must purchase from the website a minimum of 7 days before travel - you cannot buy this ticket at a station. Other options of the ticket are available - see the website. 2011 prices.
I have full details on my London pages. The only downsides I can see is that you cannot travel before 10.00 and you have to buy on line - I wonder if you can buy on line from overseas?

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Moscow

Thanks to all of you! It was really helpful.
Do you think I'd better skip Brighton till my next visit? It was my idea to combine them. Hastings is "the must". I planned to come to Brighton after 16:00 and just stroll along seaside etc.But may be you are right and we will skip it.

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Swanland

My own choice would be Hastings over Brighton.

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from London

There is an irritation guy pretending to be some Mexican/Spaniard called LOCO featured on SOUTHERN RAILWAYS

He is trying to flog more tickets with DEALS !

Now I know that the London Victoria to Eastbourne train proceeds to Hastings.

Have you looked at this option ?

Getting from Eastbourne to Brighton is very nice on the bus along the cliff road via Newhaven.

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from London

I should have said that the bus ride to Brighton from Eastbourne goes from the pier which is a great stroll and well worth finding time to explore. Bus times etc found on
or you can take another Southern Train from Eastbourne to Brighton if you don't want to stay in Eastbourne. See what LOCO says ? You can do all this travel using Southern starting and finishing in London Victoria.
If you have any thoughts please ask.

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Moscow

Thank you. Good idea! It must be a great journey! I'm studying the timetables.

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