The machines that aren't broken

Typical: of course the ticket machine chooses a busy time to go wrong. In Oxford station, queues were forming at a machine that refused to display Network Railcard as a valid railcard. The woman at the front of the queue tried for quite some time to make it work, then gave up and sought assistance. I was eavesdropping on her conversation with James, a busy member of station staff, when I got to the front of my own queue and encountered an identical problem. Soon it became clear that all the ticket machines had the same issue: refusing to display Network Railcard as an option.

Train in vain: buying tickets from First Great Western

Today's tale is my experience of buying train tickets from the First Great Western website. I was trying to buy a ticket from Oxford to London, returning on the following day.

I wanted to see all the return tickets available

  • What I did: chose “return” and typed in the dates of travel.
  • What I got: lots of different single ticket types, then one choice of return ticket (an off-peak return).