Forthcoming SailRail improvements & thoughts on Eurolines
Just been reading the previous interesting post about the Eurolines journey.
Having observed the London coach at Busáras on numerous occasions (whilst waiting for a provincial bus) it has been my experience that it being close to full is the regular situation whereas its counterpart to Leeds is not as busy but nonetheless used. I've very rarely used the London coach but on numerous occasions have used the Dublin-Liverpool-Manchester-Leeds one - it gives a through journey (not possible by rail). Though it's always my experience that the London coach gets priority at Holyhead's immigration check which is fair enough on account of the higher numbers and longer journey.
Bus Éireann employ a supervisor/inspector at Holyhead to oversee things. Same member of staff I understand will also oversee any passengers joining at Holyhead (e.g. someone travelling Holyhead to Manchester). This is why after the immigration check is complete the coach usually drives around to the Eurolines stop in the Port Bus Station.
The economy fare has a limited allocation and applies to passengers who book a week or more prior to travel but the disadvantage is that no refunds or amendments are allowed. The Bus Éireann e-ticketing for this service is a fairly recent thing but I fully agree the ticket types need to be explained better.
Like SailRail, it is possible to purchase an Eurolines ticket that commences from most provincial towns in Éire to your destination town/city in Britain. Bus Éireann market Eurolines reasonably well.
That London traffic was horrendous.
A thought I had is that perhaps UK immigration could take place at the ports on this side. Pretty much like the US clearance at Dublin Airport. But on second thoughts there may not be much merit in doing so - it's time on one side or the other regardless!
An item of good news on the SailRail front is that: Irish Ferries are soon to introduce an online booking system for SailRail ex Éire to Britain. The facility is promoted in their 2011 brochure but not up and running yet.
Last edited by Traincustomer : 30-03-2011 at 14:21.
Reason: Premature mentioning of an expected timetable change without full confirmation of it.