More About South West Trains
South West Trains (SWT) is a train operating company operating in the United Kingdom, providing train services to the south-west of London, chiefly in Greater London and the counties of Surrey, Hampshire, Dorset, Devon, Somerset, Berkshire and Wiltshire (the area largely covered before 1923 by the London and South Western Railway company, hence the new company's name).
Stagecoach South Western Trains is the registered company for South West Trains running 1,698 trains every weekday, serving 213 stations and employing around 5,500 staff.
South West Trains Rail Network
The hub of the network is London Waterloo station, SWT's London terminus. It connects London to the southern and western area of England; a major portion of the company's services is also concerned with suburban commuter lines in south-west London.
South West Trains Railway Tickets
Single and Return Tickets fares are available on all South West Trains routes and should be purchased before boarding, except where a ticket or permit to travel machine is not available. In these cases tickets can be purchased from the onboard Guard or the Revenue Protection officers.
Travelcards are available for journeys into London. They are also valid on London buses, Tramlink, Docklands Light Railway, London Underground and national rail services within the London travelcard area.
Season Tickets and Travel Cards are also available to cover multi day regular journeys. They are available in weekly, monthly and annual periods.
Super Off Peak Tickets were introduced in May 2007 by South West Trains for services travelling from Reading to London Waterloo. The original peak prices and times were retained, and "Off Peak" was redefined at a higher fare as services leaving after 11am or arriving in Waterloo at or before mid-day. Services after this period are now referred to as "Super Off Peak" and attract similar prices to the old Off Peak tickets.
Oyster Pre-Pay, Travelcards and Season Tickets -
Oyster card pay as you go is not currently available on any South West Trains route, however under the new franchise, smart card ticketing is expected to launch in 2009, this is due to having to install gates at stations to "touch in". Oyster card travelcards and season tickets are valid within the London travelcard area, this is the same as normal paper travelcards and season tickets.
Platform Tickets - South West Trains issue platform tickets for non-travellers such as enthusiasts, they are free and are issued at most mainline stations such as Southampton Central and London Waterloo, and can by collected from the guard at the barriers. These can not be used for travelling, and if they are, a Penalty Fare may be issued as a result.
Megatrain Tickets -
Stagecoach, SWT's parent company, currently sell seats on some off peak services under the Megatrain brand. This uses a similar low cost model to their Megabus service. Megatrain tickets are generally available on services that are expected to be quiet and empty. The tickets available are generally between Waterloo and other principal stations and ticket holders are assigned to a specific carriage (normally the second from the front) in the train. The Megatrain services are also operated by Virgin Trains in some regions, which has just lost the Penzance route.
South West trains Penalty Fares
South west Trains currently issue penalty fares for customers travelling by train without a valid ticket. This fare is either £20 or double the travelled fare, which ever is greater. This does not apply west of Salisbury due to the lack of ticket machines available.
Revenue Protection officers employed by South West Trains travel the Network and are visible at stations to enforce the Penalty Fares and issue some tickets. Aside from Station ticket barriers and permit to travel machines, CCTV is another method used to combat ticketless travel and prevent assaults on members of staff and customers.
As of August 2007 South West Trains have re-inforced the penalty fares policy with new announcements at stations prompting travellers to buy tickets before boarding. This new clamp-down has had some criticism due to lack of "self-service" ticketing machines and long queues at booking offices, which prevent the ability to buy tickets.
South West Trains Safety & Security
South West Trains' commitment is to ensure our passengers feel safe and secure from their point of entry until their point of departure from the railway, and to provide their employees with a safe working environment where they can come to work without fear of injury, intimidation, abuse and violence.
The last four years have seen continued improvements in safety management at South West Trains. The appointment of an independent Head of Safety & Environment illustrates their commitment to safety and has contributed to the development of a highly specialised, competent safety team. South west Trains' recent Railway Certificate submission to the Office of the Rail Regulator has been recognised as one of the best in the industry.
South West Trains Disabled Passengers Service
South West Trains strive to offer a "turn up and go" service to all their passengers. However, this is not always possible for passengers who require assistance getting on or off trains.
Much of the rail network was built in an age when the needs of passengers with disabilities were not considered. As a result of this, some stations are not fully accessible to passengers with disabilities. In addition, please bear in mind that there are parts of the day when there may be no station employees available to assist, or occasions when a large number of passengers require help at the same time.South West Trains recommend that you let them know if you require assistance at least 24 hours in advance of travel. You can do this in person at your local South West Trains station or by calling 0800 52 82 100.
South West Trains Catering Services
On-train catering is provided in partnership with Rail Gourmet Ltd. It may be provided from a counter, at-seat trolley service or a combination of both, according to the route and time of day. When there is only a counter service, their on-train employees will liaise with Rail Gourmet stewards to make sure passengers who cannot access the counter service are able to purchase refreshments.Rail Saver finds the most cost effective Southwest Trains fares for your rail journey quickly and easilly. Enjoy more rail travel for less when you use Rail Saver to book your South West Train tickets online.