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Leigh On Sea News. c2c Online Overcharging - Letter from: Andy Archard, Leigh

Leigh On Sea News. c2c Online Overcharging – Letter from: Andy Archard, Leigh

c2c Online Overcharging - Letter from: Andy Archard, Leigh

Letter from: Andy Archard, Leigh

SIR, readers who hold a Senior Railcard may be interested to know that the c2c online ticketing system has, since March of this year, been overcharging for London day returns bought for two particular services, the 9.08 and 9.21 from Chalkwell (or tweak the precise minutes for other local stations).

These are the fairly popular very first services that qualify for off-peak rate, as they are scheduled to arrive at Fenchurch Street after 10.00.

Online purchase for either of these services, using a Senior Railcard, currently fails to attract the off-peak rate. The difference between what is charged online and the ticket-office price is of the order of £7 (broadly £20 vs. £13), and there has been a corresponding difference for 3-day advance online purchase for the 9.08 and 9.21 services when compared with the charge for later services, though no such difference applied prior to March.

I have been in correspondence with c2c, who have now stated that the quirk is a “system logic error”.

They do not know how long it will take to fix the system, but I am sure they will be happy for me to pass on their advice on how to combat the system logic pending a permanent fix.

I quote: As a short-term resolution, we would recommend you select one of the later Off-Peak services such as the 09:41 from Chalkwell to which the discount is being automatically applied online to ensure you are paying the cheaper discounted fare as a Senior Railcard holder.

I can confirm you are able to travel on the earlier services and the purchased ticket will be valid.  Although some readers may think I’m making a mountain out of a molehill, others may agree that the situation has arisen with ironic timing, given the current consultation over ticket offices, human beings and automation.

Incidentally, I should like to thank the customer contact team at c2c: although things did take a long time they have certainly listened.


A c2c spokesperson responded to Mr Archard’s letter with the following statement: “We apologise for the confusion this has caused some of our customers and would like to provide reassurance that we are reviewing the root cause of the issue. We hope to rectify the issue soon; in the meantime, we advise our Senior Railcard customers to select a later off-peak service to benefit from the correct discount.”

The spokesperson added: “We are currently conducting a review into all Railcard discount functionality on the ticket machines after discovering some issues with the discount application tool.

“We have also raised this with our suppliers to create a permanent fix.

“With regards to advice for customers I can confirm that selecting one of the later off-peak services – which generates the higher discount – will provide customers with a Senior Railcard, with a valid ticket.

“Also, it’s worth mentioning that if customers with a Senior Railcard are traveling after 09:30 they can benefit from Senior Rover tickets, which offer a bigger discount on a lot of journeys from Leigh-on-Sea.”

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