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Old June 23rd, 2011, 01:57 PM   #261
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When I went to Hongkong you could borrow a cheap rechargeable card at the airport suitable for all kind of public transport and even for vending machines throughout the city. Back at the airport a week later I could get a total refund of the bail and the money leftover on that card. Is it really that hard to go to a random Asian Metropolis and copy their public transport system?
A single fare in Netherlands could be far more expensive than in Hong Kong. Think of a Schiphol-Groningen trip, nothing absurd at all. It costs € 23. If one could grab a card for - say - € 10, and check-in to Groningen, one could just ditch the card upon arrival in Groningen, instead of having to top up money before checking-out.

As far as all stations, even minor ones, are not gated (something that will not happen, unfortunately, I think gated stations are safer, more modern, and keep people for going to the platforms if they are not travelling, reducing crowding), you need to have a sufficient high balance on your card to check-in. It should be the maximum fare (€ 23,50 for 2nd class travel).

But a refund scheme should operate at the airport. Maybe some kiosks that give money back when you feed your card back in.
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Old June 23rd, 2011, 02:49 PM   #262
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That makes sense. So you imply that the free entrance to the platforms is the main obstruction for introducing such a system? Many stations have already invested in gates standing there unused for many years now. Some stations like Schiedam Centrum have had operating gates in the past. I wonder how much longer it will take before all stations are equipped with gates and are operating.
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Old June 23rd, 2011, 03:40 PM   #263
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vliegtuigbouwert View Post

When I went to Hongkong you could borrow a cheap rechargeable card at the airport suitable for all kind of public transport and even for vending machines throughout the city. Back at the airport a week later I could get a total refund of the bail and the money leftover on that card. Is it really that hard to go to a random Asian Metropolis and copy their public transport system?
I know, it's ridiculous. We could have saved billions of euros if we'd asked the French to build our highspeed railway and exploit it and if we'd asked Hong Kong if we could copy their ticket system. But no, we had to reinvent the wheel. Except our wheel is square.

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I didn't know Disposable OV Chipkaarts can't be used outside RET and GVB networks. Doesn't HET have them also?
HTM? No they don't. They make you buy single tickets at the driver. Those are of course more expensive.

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I think they could, then, revamp their ticketing machines, like allowing some form of refund to credit cards. Technically, it shouldn't be difficult to implement sector-specific disposable chipkaarts, e.g., the RFID equivalent of paper tickets, but I doubt NS will do that, as it would remove the incentives for buying a chipkaart.

Tourists are naturally expected to pay more for use of trains. Any person who rides trains in Netherlands more than 600km a year outside peak time is better of with a off-peak discount card. Tourists don't have that and thus pay 100% fares instead of 60% fares.
Well 60% versus 100% is a difference from that mandatory 7,50 charge for an EMPTY card + that silly minimum of 20 bucks to check in. Imagine if you're going home from a trip in Amsterdam. You want to take the train from Centraal to Schiphol. In order to be able to check in, your card has to have at least 20 bucks on it. Then you check out on Schiphol with some 17 euro still left on your card. And you can't get it back.
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Old June 23rd, 2011, 03:50 PM   #264
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Well 60% versus 100% is a difference from that mandatory 7,50 charge for an EMPTY card + that silly minimum of 20 bucks to check in. Imagine if you're going home from a trip in Amsterdam. You want to take the train from Centraal to Schiphol. In order to be able to check in, your card has to have at least 20 bucks on it. Then you check out on Schiphol with some 17 euro still left on your card. And you can't get it back.
The balance for travelling with discount cards on 2nd class is € 10.

I think the easiest way to solve the problem for the overwhelming majority of international travelers would be to put some refund machines at Schiphol Plaza. It is a 24/7 patrolled area, so no risks in storing money on the machines. They could make the machines work both ways: you can buy an anonymous card for € 27,50. When returning, you can get a refund from whatever money is left, if you return the card. If transforming it in an ATM becomes too much of a hassle, they could transform it in a voucher system to be used within the airport stores.

Same could be done in train border stations like Maastricht Ranwick, Hengelo, Roosendal. Put the machines at Eindhoven airport, Hoek Van Holland ferry terminal, Rotterdam cruise port...

That only, the only people that would be on the hook for a loss would be those leaving the country by Eurolines or some lift with a car driver.
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Old June 23rd, 2011, 04:07 PM   #265
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
The balance for travelling with discount cards on 2nd class is € 10.
Tourists don't get the discount.

Quote:
I think the easiest way to solve the problem for the overwhelming majority of international travelers would be to put some refund machines at Schiphol Plaza. It is a 24/7 patrolled area, so no risks in storing money on the machines. They could make the machines work both ways: you can buy an anonymous card for € 27,50. When returning, you can get a refund from whatever money is left, if you return the card. If transforming it in an ATM becomes too much of a hassle, they could transform it in a voucher system to be used within the airport stores.

Same could be done in train border stations like Maastricht Ranwick, Hengelo, Roosendal. Put the machines at Eindhoven airport, Hoek Van Holland ferry terminal, Rotterdam cruise port...

That only, the only people that would be on the hook for a loss would be those leaving the country by Eurolines or some lift with a car driver.
That could work, but it won't happen. It would cost money twice: first to put up the machines and second by providing refunds.
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Old June 24th, 2011, 07:53 AM   #266
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vliegtuigbouwert View Post
That makes sense. So you imply that the free entrance to the platforms is the main obstruction for introducing such a system? Many stations have already invested in gates standing there unused for many years now. Some stations like Schiedam Centrum have had operating gates in the past. I wonder how much longer it will take before all stations are equipped with gates and are operating.
That will never happen. You can't have gates at unmanned stations. Manning all stations is to expensive.
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Old June 24th, 2011, 03:26 PM   #267
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Rotterdam Centraal has a change machine where you can exchange notes for coins for the ticket machines, but no doubt these aren't available at many stations and are no good for fares which aren't an exact number of euro.

Otherwise, can prepaid chipknips be used at NS ticket machines? You'd probably still end up with some money left on it by the time you went of course but not so bad as an OV-Chipkaart.
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Old July 17th, 2011, 04:46 PM   #268
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new OV Terminals (PT Terminals)
Currently the four largest trainstations in the Netherlands are in construction.
Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague and Utrecht.
When the stations are finished they will renamed in Public Transportation Terminals

Amsterdam CS


Rotterdam CS


The Hague CS


Utrecht CS


Amsterdam Centraal Station
start 2003-2013 (the new metro 2017)
Huge renovation
New busplatform
New metrostation (metro north-south line)

Current situation


Quote:
Originally Posted by Winbuks View Post
Uitgraven bouwput voor de westelijke entree van de nieuwe metroverdeelhal

Future rendings





New metrostation



Quote:
Originally Posted by The Engineer View Post
Dag van de bouw 2011, Kleine selectie van de foto's

1. Het prachtige dak van de het station
image hosted on flickr

11-05-28 Dag van de bouw 2011 002 by The Engineer 023, on Flickr

2. De wand waar straks de metro doorheen rijdt.
image hosted on flickr

11-05-28 Dag van de bouw 2011 003 by The Engineer 023, on Flickr

3. Overzicht waarbij de posities van de nog te maken schuine kolommen goed te zien zijn. (telkens tussen de 2 stalen kolommen en op de schuine betonblokken)
image hosted on flickr

11-05-28 Dag van de bouw 2011 006 by The Engineer 023, on Flickr
New metrotunnel placed underneath the station
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Originally Posted by Momo1435 View Post
Mijn dank gaat wederom naar Wuppeltje en de Dienst Noord/Zuidlijn voor het regelen van perstoegang tot het ponton en Overhoeks. Ik heel veel foto's kunnen maken, hier een selectie met een paar worden .
17 nu alleen nog een grote bocht om recht op de ingang van de sluis te komen te liggen.

18

19. En hij staat recht.


Ik heb het dus niet meer afgewacht totdat de tunnel helemaal in de sluis was gevaren.Maar ja, ondanks de vroege ochtend en de regen was het toch een mooie ervaring om het allemaal van iets dichterbij, of beter gezegd van hogerop te kunnen zien tussen alle cameraploegen, fotografen en de medewerkers van de bouwbedrijven/gemeente. Ik zal later ook nog een paar extra foto's plaatsen.
New busplatform



New docks for the public transporationsferries



Rotterdam Centraal Station
Start 2004-2013
Complete new trainstation
New metro line to The Hague Centraal Station

Old building just before the demolition (in the front the construction of the new metrostation)



Future rendings







Current situation
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Jammer dat men er dan niet voor kiest om een veel groter oppervlak met zonnecellen te installeren.
Zal wel een budgetkwestie zijn geweest.

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Old August 25th, 2011, 12:55 AM   #269
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It has been announced that paper tickets will be discontinued from use in Dutch railways from December 2012.
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Old August 25th, 2011, 01:48 AM   #270
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Quote:
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It has been announced that paper tickets will be discontinued from use in Dutch railways from December 2012.
Have they said how people coming from abroad will be able to exit the train stations once the gates are closed?
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Old August 25th, 2011, 06:52 AM   #271
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It has been announced that paper tickets will be discontinued from use in Dutch railways from December 2012.
It has been announced, but it won't happen, as NS can't stop accepting tickets issued by foreign railways.
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Old August 25th, 2011, 02:26 PM   #272
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Have they said how people coming from abroad will be able to exit the train stations once the gates are closed?
Gating is a different subject. They haven't settled on closing the gates Dec. 2012, just on the fact NS will not issue paper tickets anymore and all passengers will then be required to carry an OV Chipkaart. They will probably exempt passengers travelling on Thalys and ICE trains from that requirement.

Possible solution for international travelers include having gate agents on the few stations served by international trains that will be gated (Arnhem, Rotterdam Centraal, Breda, Schiphol, Amsterdam Centraal, Utrecht Centraal, Amersfoort, Hilversum, Maastricht).
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Old August 25th, 2011, 04:08 PM   #273
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Possible solution for international travelers include having gate agents on the few stations served by international trains that will be gated (Arnhem, Rotterdam Centraal, Breda, Schiphol, Amsterdam Centraal, Utrecht Centraal, Amersfoort, Hilversum, Maastricht).
I can still buy a paper ticket to any Dutch station, not just the main ones served by international trains, at any major station in Switzerland. For NS to stop accepting such tickets the Netherlands would have to cancel quite a few international agreements.
And there remains the fact that you can't have gates at unmanned stations. So for the foreseable future I expect paper tickets to remain in parallel with the chipcard.
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Old August 25th, 2011, 04:14 PM   #274
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And there remains the fact that you can't have gates at unmanned stations. So for the foreseable future I expect paper tickets to remain in parallel with the chipcard.
There is no project that I know about gating all Dutch train stations. Just RET is, AFAIK, working to have all its Rotterdam Metro's stations gated. It is easier because of their design.

In any case, the number of passengers buying tickets from abroad to minor stations in NL is small. NS will not sell domestic paper tickets from Dec. 2012, and that surely counts more than 99% of all ticketing activity.

Now I just wish NS dropped from Interrail pass agreement like the British did in the 1980s.
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Old August 26th, 2011, 12:23 AM   #275
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Now I just wish NS dropped from Interrail pass agreement like the British did in the 1980s.
Why would they want to do that? It brings a lot of tourists through with little direct costs. It is a shame Britain left it but being physically detached from the continent means it probably doesn't lose much.
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Old August 26th, 2011, 08:24 AM   #276
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NS will not sell domestic paper tickets from Dec. 2012, and that surely counts more than 99% of all ticketing activity.
Is NS no longer going to sell e-tickets too? I can't imagine that NS would be the only railway in Western Europe that doesn't sell tickets via the internet...

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Now I just wish NS dropped from Interrail pass agreement like the British did in the 1980s.
What have you got against interrail?
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Old August 27th, 2011, 10:10 AM   #277
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What have you got against interrail?
Well, I think that we all know the answer to that =D Suburbanist is a pro-road fanatic whose hobby is trolling the rail forums in skyscrapercity. He comes here just to propose non-sensical ideas created to harm rail users and make driving look better or else cheer when companies (like NS) enact such idiotic proposals (like dropping paper ticker). He clearly says that he doesn't use trains, because he prefers to drive, and yet he has very strong ideas about how people should use trains (actually he would rather prefer that they don't use). Basically he supports everything which makes rail usage less convenient, more complex, more expensive or else less attractive. Dropping Interrail goes in line with that, so that's why he supports dropping it.
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Old August 27th, 2011, 10:52 AM   #278
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cheer when companies (like NS) enact such idiotic proposals (like dropping paper ticker). He clearly says that he doesn't use trains, because he prefers to drive, and yet he has very strong ideas about how people should use trains (actually he would rather prefer that they don't use). Basically he supports everything which makes rail usage less convenient, more complex, more expensive or else less attractive. Dropping Interrail goes in line with that, so that's why he supports dropping it.
NS is becoming more business oriented, a smart card create more opportunities to extract more money from passenger. I have nothing against rail transport as infrastructure, I have everything against diverting funds from road to rail project. But I'm the biggest support of profitable freight and passenger rail operations and high-speed, airline-style priced rail.

Complexity = opportunities for price discrimination = opportunities to earn money and be more competitive and profitable.

As I always wrote, I think infrastructure is something for governments to take care directly or indirectly, and that includes rail. What I can't cope with are operations of vehicles done by government entities or monopolies auctioned in blocks to private operators with few commercial freedom to set prices, routes etc. In essence, I want to kill the idea of a network of trains that must be coordinated, and leave the idea of a network of tracks, modern, high-speed, state-of-the-art signaled, that any private party can use. Like air or road or water transport.

I want to bring competition, for the sake of competition and choice, even if it degrades service level, for ideological reasons (I'm against state-sponsored monopolies). As a technology, modern trains are quite cool. As a monopoly-based system, it is a curse, a cancer on the economic freedoms that need to be dismantled. But that doesn't mean ripping out tracks or demolishing stations, just dismantling the operational framework and the very concept of a service networks centrally planned. They did it with airlines in the 1980s/1990s, before that time air travel was tightly regulated, national carriers had monopolies, fares were fixed, in many countries schedules of domestic flights were "timed" to offer connections with international flights etc. Free markets gave us Ryanair, Easyjet and the ability to travel to Norway or Portugal paying peanuts.
======

In that sense of infrastructure, not vehicles, Pro-Rail TRACK network is abysmal: it uses ATB, an outdated system that can't cope with speeds faster than 140 km/h. The should deploy ERTMS-2 in 5 years throughout the network, which could easily allow speed-up of trains as many grade-crossings have been already removed and alignments, well, it is most a flat country here with straightened tracks, so, signaling allowing, not many track improvements would be required to put many lines running at 220 km/h. Yet, they are dropping the ball cancelling projects like the Zuiderzee line to Groningen and Germany.

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Is NS no longer going to sell e-tickets too? I can't imagine that NS would be the only railway in Western Europe that doesn't sell tickets via the internet...
You can buy e-tickets in the future, I suppose, but you will have to load them in you OV Chipkaart. The smart card is already the medium of carrying of many discount plans, student free transport passes, senior concessions etc. So, once the interface is dealt with, the card will be the universal carry of all rail products.

A colleague of mine told me that German (DB) trains operating regional lines into Netherlands will be soon fit with OV Chipkaart check-in machines inside the trains used in those routes. Therefore, it will be possible for passengers travelling to/from Neteherlands to use OV Chipkaart to pay for the Dutch part of their journey.

Quote:
What have you got against interrail?
It is a financially detrimental product that lost its reason for existence since the international rail market was liberalized. By financial detrimental I mean: rational use of rail for travel will usually mean advanced discount tickets + some national passes will provide cheaper travel. Those using passes are only making a good deal if they are overusing the network. And if so, if they are using rail for impractical journeys, or to travel 500km every day, they should pay accordingly. It would be like Shell selling a "free refuel" card that allows people who want to drive 3.000km in 5 days, like me, and taking a financial hit.

The bottom line is: I see passengers as costumers, as money pits to be dug out of their wallets and pay more if possible. I don't see them as using an essential service when they are travelling long distance, like it were health care or tertiary education.
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Old August 27th, 2011, 12:08 PM   #279
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The bottom line is: I see passengers as costumers, as money pits to be dug out of their wallets and pay more if possible. I don't see them as using an essential service when they are travelling long distance, like it were health care or tertiary education.
According to that logic, toll-free motorways shouldn't exist and tolled ones should be far more expensive.
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Old August 27th, 2011, 06:03 PM   #280
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Quote:
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It is a financially detrimental product that lost its reason for existence since the international rail market was liberalized. By financial detrimental I mean: rational use of rail for travel will usually mean advanced discount tickets + some national passes will provide cheaper travel. Those using passes are only making a good deal if they are overusing the network. And if so, if they are using rail for impractical journeys, or to travel 500km every day, they should pay accordingly. It would be like Shell selling a "free refuel" card that allows people who want to drive 3.000km in 5 days, like me, and taking a financial hit.
How is it the same when rail use has little direct costs. If someone using a pass is on a train that requires reservation they have to pay that. Also sleepers require a reservation. Also they are not entirely cheap. In Eastern Europe it is negligable the discount you can achieve unless you do long distances, which take a long time anyway. The rail companies do get a cut of the fares based on estimated usage.
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