Never on a Sunday

I had things all worked out so that I renewed my weekly ticket on a Tuesday. On a Tuesday, renewing my ticket was a breeze, hardly worth leaving any extra time to allow for the purchase: just a lightning surgical strike on the Quick Ticket machine and I’d be in and out of Vauxhall Tube station before more than a few bars of Mozart had been played.

But then I had to go and take a week’s holiday, and now I’m renewing on a Monday. On a Monday it doesn’t seem to be possible to allow enough time to renew my ticket and catch my train without it being a complete panic. Monday is the day everyone else buys their season ticket which means, of course, it was a good day for the Quick Ticket machine to decide it couldn’t read any oyster cards. It also means it was a good day for the Slow Ticket machine to helpfully cancel the purchase of the passenger in front of me when he took too long peering at the pin number pad, forcing him to start again from scratch. And an excellent day for one of the ticket office staff (out of a total of two) to decide to spend it with his back to the window, determinedly ignoring my feeble coughs and ahems and hopeful ‘hellos’ as I tried to renew my ticket the old fashioned way. And finally a splendid day for the passenger who nipped into the queue at the slow ticket machine in front of me while I was failing to get somebody’s attention, but before I gave up and went back to the machine, to choose to try and pay for his ticket with a fiver that looked as though it had been through the wash. Tried a good few times, I might add, before he gave up.

What’s that you say? Buy my season ticket the night before? I could do that, even though Vauxhall at night is a wild and scary place (if the state of the park in the morning is anything to go by) – but that would involve being organised. And planning ahead. And thinking about work on a Sunday evening – and that would never do.

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6 responses to “Never on a Sunday

  1. Am I being ultra stupid here?

    but if you have an Oyster Card, why don’t you try renewing your ticket “on line”, this will save you time. ONce you have entered your Oyster details and the ticket type required, you need to tell the computer which station you will be using for your next journey – i.e. Vauxhall, as you go to the barrier – and touch on – hey presto, as if by magic – the new ticket spings in to life on your Oyster Card.

    At least thats the idea.

    Please don’t blame me if it doesn’t, I only work for LU.

  2. Tube Dude has an excellent point, although I’ve never managed to make it work, as I don’t remember in enough time and it needs 24 hours between renewing online and actually going through the barriers. Plus, I mainly use buses, so that system doesn’t work – but that’s a rant for another day…

    You could also renew the ticket on Friday on your way home from work, I think – I seem to remember there being an option for the ticket to start a few days ahead.

  3. Heh making Oyster work? That would be the day. You see tubedude has a nice white oyster card (somthing which im trying to lay my hands on) and he doesnt need to bother with silly trival things like buying a ticket!!!!!

    Ive had pager messages about Vauxhall Station being a no go area for ticket staff late at night.

    You can renew most BR/NR season tickets a few days before they run out. The ‘Quick’ Fare machines will only issue a 7 day season with it starting the day you buy it.

    That gives me an idea on a new blog entry.

  4. TubeDude – you’re right (of course) except that although I buy my ticket in Vauxhall underground station, I actually use it in Vauxhall overground – so would the gates there pick up the new season ticket? If not I suppose I could go in the gates and out again at the underground station …

    Katja – the only thing worse than thinking about getting to work on Monday a Sunday night is thinking about getting to work on Monday on a Friday …

    Ticket collector – the quick fare machines not doing forward renewals is a pain. But then I suppose they wouldn’t be so quick …

  5. Yeap you could do that, saves joing the que.

    Ticket collector – you have a point, getting an Oyster Card to work – I hate tham just as much as everyone else except Ken. And you point out that i dont pay for tickes – well; partly true – I don’t pay for TfL area tickets – I do however have to fork out 2.5 k a year for the chance to use the “main line between Wickford and Stratford, so yes I DO pay for a ticket. Sadly my Oyster doesn’t work where I live. Come work for LUL and you too can have a nice white Oyster – actually pale grey.

    Kayja – erm point taken, maybe try a different station?

    Disgruntled – sorry to use your blog to rant abit.

  6. TubeDude – that’s what it’s here for …

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