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Old September 24th, 2012, 04:40 PM   #621
kramer81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunfuns View Post
Out of interest I made a price comparison. Let's say someone is planning to make a trip to his/her capital city the weekend after next (October 6th-7th) leaving with the first train and coming back with the last. I chose the following roughly comparable pairs of cities and went for the cheapest ticket as long as it didn't occur massive time loses (like taking a local train would). The distances given are on the road, time with the train and prices in euros.

Barcelona-Madrid 617 km, 3h 36min/3h 10 m, 169 euros
Avignon-Paris 690 km, 2h 40min, 154 euros
Milan-Rome 580 km, 2h 55 min, 172 euros
Glasgow-London 643 km, 4h 30 min, 141 euros

Looks like Suburbanist was right, although for two weeks in advance the cheapest tickets are probably already gone. I know from experience that much cheaper tickets than this are sometimes available on Italian Frecciarosa.

P.S. I used official websites to get these numbers.
I appreciate you are comparing like with like but just to let you know Glasgow-London is as low as 50 euros with an advance ticket. I would be interested to know if the same level of discount applies in Spain, France and Italy etc?
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Old September 24th, 2012, 05:03 PM   #622
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kramer81 View Post
I appreciate you are comparing like with like but just to let you know Glasgow-London is as low as 50 euros with an advance ticket. I would be interested to know if the same level of discount applies in Spain, France and Italy etc?


Yes (in Spain) but not exactly sure to know exactly details.

Web fare. 60% discount. Only available on web. No change, 50% if cancelling.

"Star" fare. 40% discount. Available on web and stations. Rather expensive than a single ticket if change or cancelling.

For all cases, return ticket 20% discount. And do not have to buy together. This is, you buy a single ticket and you pay 100% of it. If before of 2 months you make a return ticket (same station of origin and destination... once I preferred to pay one more station and use this discount) you will pay 60% only (20% discount of first ticket and 20% of return ticket. In fact if you buy a first ticket in business and return on tourist... they calculate always the 20% of both). I think this can be done now on web

And for all cases but only available on stations. If you shuttle from an international or extra-peninsular flight (Canary islands, Balearic islands, Melilla... or incluiding helicopter from Ceuta...), you have a 10% if single ticket or 25% if return ticket.
You have to show the boarding pass or flight ticket and it is enough.

I know one person who, should he do not have a reduction, always tries to take this 10% in the station.
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Old September 24th, 2012, 05:04 PM   #623
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Anyway..... any of you can enter at
http://www.renfe.com/EN/viajeros/index.html (Renfe English version).
Push at Purchase. A safe web will be opened. Just choose one journey and one date and will see how many discounts and with which advance you can find

(no need to give any personal data for searching in purchasing and looking fares. Only if you want to make a final purchasing)
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Old September 24th, 2012, 05:12 PM   #624
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K_ View Post
Now repeat that with:

Vilagarcia de Arousa - Toledo.

Maybe you chosed one of the worst journeys in Spanish railways to be competitive.

Vilagarcia de Arousa is near to have a full high speed line (Santiago-Vigo, as well as Santiago-La Coru˝a is on service). There are several trains anyway, to go to Pontevedra and Vigo (hint... even if not the regional capital or the province capital, Vigo is the biggest city at Galicia).

Vigo-Orense-Zamora-Medina del Campo-Segovia is under construction and one of the works that are more advanced (yeah... prime minister and transport minister were born at Galicia.......)

Today there is only one Vigo-Madrid daily and other one on night using high speed railway and only saves 20 minutes from the conventional railway.

Toledo is only linked with Madrid. They tried to make another link but no passengers... and easy to connect with a fast trip (28 minutes really, 35 on the web) to the hub of Madrid-Atocha. In fact, there are trains only to Madrid.
I asked in a Spanish thread if it wondered to put a direct Barcelona-Toledo on weekends at least (absolutely possible) and forumers said not much to gain.
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Old September 24th, 2012, 08:23 PM   #625
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Originally Posted by alserrod View Post
Maybe you chosed one of the worst journeys in Spanish railways to be competitive.

Vilagarcia de Arousa is near to have a full high speed line (Santiago-Vigo, as well as Santiago-La Coru˝a is on service). There are several trains anyway, to go to Pontevedra and Vigo (hint... even if not the regional capital or the province capital, Vigo is the biggest city at Galicia).
Actually in theory it ought to be possible to make this trip in about 7 hours.

Vilagarcia - Santiago is 20 minutes, Santiago Madrid is 5h35, and Madrid Toledo is 33min. Add two times 10 minutes for transfers and I get just onder 7 hours. And that wouldn't be bad at all for that distance.
(I choose all my examples to be about 600km apart)

I choose this example because I wanted to show that RENFE is simply refusing to serve some passengers. What is someone who wants to travel from Galicia to Toledo who doesn't have a car supposed to do?
You can't ask for a timetable or price for this trip at all on www.renfe.es. I just wanted to show that even Trenitalia does this better.

Quote:
Toledo is only linked with Madrid. They tried to make another link but no passengers... and easy to connect with a fast trip (28 minutes really, 35 on the web) to the hub of Madrid-Atocha. In fact, there are trains only to Madrid.
It's actually not needed to have direct trains from Barcelona to other places than Madrid. Just coordinate the Schedules in Atocha, and sell through tickets. It's an opportunity for increased revenue at marginal cost that RENFE is simply not exploiting.

What does someone from Toledo doe if he or she wants to go to Granada or Sevilla...

Last edited by K_; September 24th, 2012 at 08:41 PM.
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Old September 24th, 2012, 11:33 PM   #626
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K_ View Post
I choose this example because I wanted to show that RENFE is simply refusing to serve some passengers. What is someone who wants to travel from Galicia to Toledo who doesn't have a car supposed to do?
You can't ask for a timetable or price for this trip at all on www.renfe.es. I just wanted to show that even Trenitalia does this better.
I agree. Information for connecting trains is awful on Renfe web.

And if they show it, they make some no-sense shuttles and other ones with no time for it.
In any case I remember that they adviced always if you had less than 60 minutes for it.
If a shuttle is assured (since last spring we have a lot of shuttle trains), do not be worried. They will offer you any solution (they can delay the second train or trying anything else). And the conductor on board will know you have to shuttle and advice you about the alternative you will have (you will not need to arrive the shutling station to ask for it)


Quote:
It's actually not needed to have direct trains from Barcelona to other places than Madrid. Just coordinate the Schedules in Atocha, and sell through tickets. It's an opportunity for increased revenue at marginal cost that RENFE is simply not exploiting.

What does someone from Toledo doe if he or she wants to go to Granada or Sevilla...

It exists...
As there is demande, there are two daily Barcelona-Sevilla and two Barcelona-Malaga
But there is only one Valencia-Sevilla

try to ask at renfe.com timetables on high speed railway Valencia-Malaga... (departing Valencia at 08:15)
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Old September 25th, 2012, 12:20 AM   #627
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K_ View Post
In Galicia the Vigo - A Coru˝a line offers trip times that are competitive with car travel times. Given the size of the towns along the route they could run far more trains.
It is just recently that this line have improved to a competitive alternative to cars and buses, before the train between Vigo and A Coru˝a took 2 h 50 min for less than 180km. The new rebuilt line will have cut that to 1 h 10 min when finished.

I think that at some point in the future this line will have some sort of regional commuter services, that is just a matter of time and a somewhat better financial climate i Spain.
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Old September 25th, 2012, 12:31 AM   #628
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As you know, there are two different gauges. Well... more ones if we consider that in the north there are several lines more and for instance, a short line in the commuter network of Madrid has a different gauge... but let's talk about Spanish gauge and International gauge.

All lines of high speed are International gauges. All old conventional lines are Spanish gauges. All stations with high speed have different platforms with different gauges. In my city, plattform 1 to 4, international, 5 to 8, Spanish one.
There is only the exemption of the Orense-Santiago-La Coru˝a. It is high speed but remains in Spanish gauge until the rest of international gauge arrives Orense when will be changed.

And there are trains that can run up to 250 km/h in International gauges (high speed lines) and changing the gauge (just several minutes) to the conventional one. This thing offers a lot of journeys using part of high speed and saving time.


In general, names are:

* AVE: Full high speed service
* Avant: Regional distance but served on high speed line (with one exemption)
* Alvia: Train that runs partially on high speed and change to a conventional one. It can be a Barcelona-Bilbao (high speed line Barcelona-Zaragoza), a Madrid-Granada (high speed line Madrid-Antequera), etc...


All Avant trains you will see are regional services on high speed line. They offer you single tickets or a monthly forfait if you want.

They are service as
Madrid-Valladolid
Lerida-Barcelona
Calatayud-Zaragoza
Orense-La Coru˝a
Madrid-Toledo
Madrid-Puertollano
Malaga-Cordoba-Sevilla
Madrid-Albacete


you can search for tickets between these any of these stations and will find the difference of price but not on journey time.
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Old September 25th, 2012, 03:06 AM   #629
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I think the reason RENFE doesn't sell tickets for connections it could theoretically serve is to due to its rather generous refund schemes for delays on its AVE services, which are much more reliable than local trains on Iberian gauge.

It is akin to the reason many low-cost airlines will not sell connecting flights even if they have a networks that would allow them to.

So if you buy two RENFE tickets, with two PNRs, and you lose your second train because your first train was delayed, RENFE will now owe will refund, compensation and not even reschedule your train ticket for a later time (since it is not a single-issuance ticket).

Suppose you are departing from Madri P. Atocha, and you arrive late because your subway is late: RENFE will not allow you to board the next train if you are on a non-refundable "Web" or "Estrela" ticket, since it is not RENFE's responsibility the subway (or a cab, your bike, your relative bringing you by car) is late/broke down. So by not selling certain city-pairs, RENFE excuses itself from dealing with certain missed connections.
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Old September 25th, 2012, 11:18 AM   #630
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But in the case of a Valencia-Malaga, where you have to take an AVE Valencia-Sevilla, stopping at Cordoba and waiting about 12 minutes for a Madrid-Malaga, both of them have the same system of refund if delay... and no problem since this service started in March.

And there... you are using two different AVE services with the same ticket.
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Old September 26th, 2012, 11:56 AM   #631
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Timetable changes in Spanish High speed.

Huesca-Madrid will be changed, departing 15 minutes in advance to offer a link-ticket with a Madrid-Barcelona. 10 minutes waiting at Zaragoza and will be possible a Huesca-Zaragoza-Madrid


Three out of five trains per direction in Madrid-Barcelona/Barcelona-Madrid non-stop will be changed for other with less passenger capacity.
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Old September 26th, 2012, 06:15 PM   #632
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
Suppose you are departing from Madri P. Atocha, and you arrive late because your subway is late: RENFE will not allow you to board the next train if you are on a non-refundable "Web" or "Estrela" ticket, since it is not RENFE's responsibility the subway (or a cab, your bike, your relative bringing you by car) is late/broke down. So by not selling certain city-pairs, RENFE excuses itself from dealing with certain missed connections.
But we are talking connections between RENFE trains here. RENFE seems to be rather unique in Western Europe. I don't know of any other Railway that will not sell you a ticket between any combination of stations.
If you go to a random SNCF railway station and ask for a ticket for another random SNCF railway station you will get one. The big strength of railways is that they serve a lot more places than the airlines do. Railways can get customers by offering a more pleasant experience, more destinations and more flexibility.

Just consider the Madrid - Barcelona HSL. The fast trip times not only mean that Madrid is now 2 1/2 hours from Barcelona, but it also means that any place one hour from Barcelona is less than 4 hours from Madrid, and any place one hour from Madrid is less than four hours from Barcelona. Which means that the trains has a real chance of getting a serious market share here.

RENFE is mostly ignoring this market, with the result that the HSL network remains underutilized.
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Old September 26th, 2012, 07:52 PM   #633
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Now you have free commuter trains in any network where exists.

Should you come from any point in Madrid surroundings and want to go to Barcelona surroundings, you can ask for a free commuter train to Atocha and Sants stations.

Sometimes frequencies are only 5-10 minutes so no need to assure your ticket.



What I do not understand is problems to take a ticket advanced. This is... I have a ticket for a train that departs in two hours, I want to ask for next one. It is sure that company will not sell all tickets in just fifteen minutes... but takes longer, and sometimes also money, to change your ticket...
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Old September 27th, 2012, 07:13 AM   #634
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Quote:
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Now you have free commuter trains in any network where exists.
But the Rodalies don't go as far as Girona, do they...
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Old September 27th, 2012, 11:31 AM   #635
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no they not.
They are regional trains, but Barcelona-Girona and Barcelona-Tarragona have very good frequencies. In fact, Barcelona-Tarragona has one train every 30 minutes. Barcelona-Girona is not far for that time.

They are trains with few stops that drives on conventional railway.

In fact... since this spring you can:
- Arrive Barcelona and buy a new ticket to Girona. As well as always has been done
- Using Barcelona commuter network until the last station possible. It will stop in all stations but later a regional train from there to Girona.


This last chance is not used because too long and few saving money (and people who uses high speed do not think in how to save 2 euro with one hour more...)

Anyway, the "record" posted in a Spanish forum is making a journey Castellon-Lorca which can be made directly by Talgo or can be made with a 2 commuter trains Castellon-Valencia and Valencia-Xativa. A Talgo ticket Xativa-Alicante and 2 commuter trains Alicante-Murcia and Murcia-Lorca.

As well as you buy a Talgo ticket Xativa-Alicante, it will include any ticket in Valencia commuter network and in Murcia/Alicante commuter network.

Toooooooo long, but it is the record to save money!

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Old September 27th, 2012, 01:11 PM   #636
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A forumer posted some photos of Barcelona-Figueres line in the outside of Barcelona, just made this morning.

http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showpo...postcount=7036
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Old September 27th, 2012, 06:57 PM   #637
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no they not.
They are regional trains, but Barcelona-Girona and Barcelona-Tarragona have very good frequencies.
But when I look up Madrid - Girona on www.renfe.es I am only offered three daytime trains, even though there are a lot more options available. That is what I mean with RENFE missing opportunities to offer better value...
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Old September 27th, 2012, 11:00 PM   #638
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It is a system under test (and they really offer two ones because two of them links with the same Barcelona-Girona). AVE Madrid-Barcelona and regional train Barcelona-Girona.

What it means is you will have assured the connection even if there is less than one hour, your first train could have a delay, etc...
They will offer a solution without cost if you lose the second train and... it is available for a return ticket (one thing awfully... the main discount requires point-to-point return ticket, no "triangle" journeys allowed... but the "connection trains" can be considered a point-to-point).


It is a pity... but for these journeys you should check Madrid-Barcelona and later Barcelona-Girona timetables.
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Old September 30th, 2012, 12:54 PM   #639
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alserrod View Post
no they not.
They are regional trains, but Barcelona-Girona and Barcelona-Tarragona have very good frequencies. In fact, Barcelona-Tarragona has one train every 30 minutes. Barcelona-Girona is not far for that time.

They are trains with few stops that drives on conventional railway.

In fact... since this spring you can:
- Arrive Barcelona and buy a new ticket to Girona. As well as always has been done
- Using Barcelona commuter network until the last station possible. It will stop in all stations but later a regional train from there to Girona.


This last chance is not used because too long and few saving money (and people who uses high speed do not think in how to save 2 euro with one hour more...)

Anyway, the "record" posted in a Spanish forum is making a journey Castellon-Lorca which can be made directly by Talgo or can be made with a 2 commuter trains Castellon-Valencia and Valencia-Xativa. A Talgo ticket Xativa-Alicante and 2 commuter trains Alicante-Murcia and Murcia-Lorca.

As well as you buy a Talgo ticket Xativa-Alicante, it will include any ticket in Valencia commuter network and in Murcia/Alicante commuter network.

Toooooooo long, but it is the record to save money!

Better, take the Murcia cercanias to Pulpi, and technically you cross three communities, Valencia, Murcia and Andalucia
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Old September 30th, 2012, 04:02 PM   #640
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Within Madrid network you can cross it too.
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