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Old August 20th, 2013, 03:54 PM   #781
radamfi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Surel View Post
1) Rail modal split of passenger transport is falling in the Netherlands since 2006 with the highest drop in 2011 when OV-C was introduced. Maybe it went up in 2012 I don't know.
I never knew this. This is deeply worrying. What is happening in NL? I thought Dutch railways were one of the most reliable in Europe, possibly only second to Switzerland. I have noticed fares have risen somewhat since I first investigated NL train in the 90s, but they are still considerably less than in the UK, yet British trains have seen a large increase in patronage in the last 10 years. For my season ticket, 50 km to London, I pay more than the cost of the most expensive 2nd class NS subscription! The most you can pay off-peak in NL with discount is €14.80. You can hardly go anywhere in the UK for that, unless you book well in advance!

Dutch trains still have tight, planned connections whereas in the UK connections are not planned and don't wait. Getting to the station in NL is much easier than the UK with bewaakte fietsstalling, OV-Fiets and buses stopping at the station (unlike the UK).

So what's the problem?

Last edited by radamfi; August 20th, 2013 at 04:02 PM.
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Old August 20th, 2013, 05:27 PM   #782
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The drop has been rather small, not really significant.

What happens is just that cars are faster for many commutes. Netherlands is a rather decentralized country, much more than UK.

Passenger numbers are also up.

What I think is happening is that the economic crisis had let much more people stuck in place, it is difficult to sell your house and relocate these days, so maybe the commuting distance is raising on average.
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Old August 20th, 2013, 05:55 PM   #783
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The drop has been rather small, not really significant.

What happens is just that cars are faster for many commutes. Netherlands is a rather decentralized country, much more than UK.

Passenger numbers are also up.

What I think is happening is that the economic crisis had let much more people stuck in place, it is difficult to sell your house and relocate these days, so maybe the commuting distance is raising on average.
I think also that a lot of investment has been done on roads. A good example is the A2, which has been ported from 3 to 5 lanes between Utrecht and Amsterdam.
Going by car from the South to Amsterdam wasn't an option before because of traffic jams. But with this massive expansion of concrete, it has become an appealing alternative for many. There is no more traffic jams (unless accident happens) on this piece which used to be the biggest traffic jam of the Netherlands!
And same thing happens with the A4, A12, A10, ...
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Old August 21st, 2013, 02:10 AM   #784
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So if you want to travel for free on the Turin Metro you just call the control room and claim you ticket doesn't work?
Great system...
Well, you must sound convincing, and this is not a joke. Most manned systems rely (at least partly) on the operator's judgement on borderline cases, and this already cuts off most of the wannabe freeriders...
Probably, for better proof, they may also ask you to read the S/N of your ticket. GTT uses paper tickets with a magnetic strip, so I suppose they have a database with S/N associated to the actual fare they were sold with, and usage history (all vehicles are connected to their IT center).
In a very rare case, you might enter an unmanned station with a ticket printed by a parking meter (that is a very smart thing they implemented), so they have no trace of it, but whatever.

My belief is that this system has some flaws, but still it works better and costs less than applying a more complicated one, or manning all stations, so it's overall acceptable.

Funny thing is that my problem happened 10' after I was visiting the control room, so I knew exactly who was answering to my request, and they probably recognized me from the cameras
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Old August 21st, 2013, 07:04 PM   #785
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Well, you must sound convincing, and this is not a joke. Most manned systems rely (at least partly) on the operator's judgement on borderline cases, and this already cuts off most of the wannabe freeriders...
Probably, for better proof, they may also ask you to read the S/N of your ticket. GTT uses paper tickets with a magnetic strip, so I suppose they have a database with S/N associated to the actual fare they were sold with, and usage history (all vehicles are connected to their IT center).
In a very rare case, you might enter an unmanned station with a ticket printed by a parking meter (that is a very smart thing they implemented), so they have no trace of it, but whatever.

My belief is that this system has some flaws, but still it works better and costs less than applying a more complicated one, or manning all stations, so it's overall acceptable.

Funny thing is that my problem happened 10' after I was visiting the control room, so I knew exactly who was answering to my request, and they probably recognized me from the cameras
This does however show the fundamental flaw with fully electronic systems. They shift the burden of proof back to the company. In Switzerland you have open access to stations, but you are yourself responsible for having the correct ticket. I wonder what NS will do with people who claim they checked in (" but the gates opened, conductor, really") but actually didn't...
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Old August 22nd, 2013, 08:41 AM   #786
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On the trains you must at all times be able to show a valid ticket when asked to, regardless if the stations were gated or not.
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Old August 22nd, 2013, 10:48 AM   #787
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On the trains you must at all times be able to show a valid ticket when asked to, regardless if the stations were gated or not.
But only with paper tickets can the passenger be sure to have a valid ticket. With the chipcard it becomes impossible for the passenger to verify wether he/she is in order.
As long as possible I will keep using paper tickets exactly for this reason.
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Old August 22nd, 2013, 01:11 PM   #788
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With the chipcard it becomes impossible for the passenger to verify wether he/she is in order.
Not true. You can check the current card status at every NS-Kaartautomaat. See here (in Dutch) how to do that.
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Old August 22nd, 2013, 02:02 PM   #789
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Not true. You can check the current card status at every NS-Kaartautomaat. See here (in Dutch) how to do that.
I have done that just after checking in and checking out, to double check that it has worked, for extra piece of mind. However, if you are inside closed barriers you won't be able to do that.
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Old August 22nd, 2013, 03:04 PM   #790
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Quote:
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I wonder what NS will do with people who claim they checked in (" but the gates opened, conductor, really") but actually didn't...
I can tell you: because of how likely a situation like that already is with plain check-in (you missed a checkout => you checkout instead of checkin, also just plain errors that you miss in a hurry) people trust each other more than the system. So conductors just let people off the hook, +/- their gut feeling. Seen that quite a lot, actually. While gates would make mistakes more obvious, people would probably still each other more for a long time (or suspect that the gate didn't open because of an issue, and the person just skipped it because of that).

The automats are often placed in ridiculously inconvenient places (Sloterdijk, I'm looking at you). It's not reasonable to expect people to double check with them when they're in a hurry.
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Old August 22nd, 2013, 08:02 PM   #791
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The automats are often placed in ridiculously inconvenient places (Sloterdijk, I'm looking at you).
If you Twitter to NS, they might do something about it.
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Old August 22nd, 2013, 09:50 PM   #792
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Not true. You can check the current card status at every NS-Kaartautomaat. See here (in Dutch) how to do that.
Lot of good that does you when you are at the platform just in time and your train comes rolling in... they should have more of those blue readers on the platform that many metro stations have, or maybe even sell some kind of cheap, portable reader that shows you on a small one- or two-line LCD display what your current status is (i.e. what your last action was... which should be checked in at 'blabla' at xx:xx hours, etc.).
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Old August 23rd, 2013, 01:14 AM   #793
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Is NS considering changing to a per-km charging scheme? They are an anomaly given that most other train operators in NL use it.
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Old August 23rd, 2013, 09:44 AM   #794
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There are no plans to do so.
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Old August 23rd, 2013, 01:13 PM   #795
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I would like to know a bit of history behind station which is now used as Railway Museum in Utrecht. I wonder when was the last time it was used for regular service? What was the reason behind its closure?
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Old August 23rd, 2013, 06:41 PM   #796
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Not true. You can check the current card status at every NS-Kaartautomaat. See here (in Dutch) how to do that.
And can you check that the machine is working correctly? Can NS guarantee that the machines will never make a mistake?

My the point is that a conductor confronted with someone with a OV card that has not been checked in who states: "I've checked in, really, and the gates opened" has no other option then to believe this reason on his word... I've noticed that in London when I had problems with the Oyster Card. I was always promptly helped. But then in London there is staff at each underground station, so that someone jumping a gate would get noticed...
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Old August 23rd, 2013, 06:43 PM   #797
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aleander View Post

I can tell you: because of how likely a situation like that already is with plain check-in (you missed a checkout => you checkout instead of checkin, also just plain errors that you miss in a hurry) people trust each other more than the system. So conductors just let people off the hook, +/- their gut feeling. Seen that quite a lot, actually. While gates would make mistakes more obvious, people would probably still each other more for a long time (or suspect that the gate didn't open because of an issue, and the person just skipped it because of that).

The automats are often placed in ridiculously inconvenient places (Sloterdijk, I'm looking at you). It's not reasonable to expect people to double check with them when they're in a hurry.
Which is why it's pointless to gate unmanned stations. People will just jump the gates, and claim that they did check in...
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Old August 23rd, 2013, 08:46 PM   #798
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I agree with that, since we're talking about railways and not underground systems. Metro systems follow different procedures, mainly because they're meant to have no staff on trains.
Most railways services will always have conductors checking tickets; minor services can be checked by "flying squads", as we call them

So, I really don't see the urge to switch the railway to electronic ticket + gated stations.

Most of all, electronic ticketing is a fancy and useless feature until fares are actually integrated...
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Old August 23rd, 2013, 10:28 PM   #799
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I would like to know a bit of history behind station which is now used as Railway Museum in Utrecht. I wonder when was the last time it was used for regular service? What was the reason behind its closure?
It is in "regular service", with a rough one-hourly service! It is however not a regular line and a seperate ticket must be bought!

The station was closed in 1939, the two main operating company's at that time merged, and the already little used Maliebaan station was swapped for the more convenient Central Station!
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Old August 24th, 2013, 11:19 AM   #800
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And I've just realized that the original facade of Utrecht central station is no longer exist.

Anyone have the image of the original Utrecht central station building? Preferably in color...
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