Serpentine queues at Coventry for Virgin tickets

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Car Rental News - 17/12/2009


Virgin's new automated rail ticket tellers criticised

The Union For People In Transport And Travel (TSSA) has claimed that the closure of Virgin staff ticket offices has led to serpentine queues just to obtain a ticket. Coventry was said to have a 30 minute 100 meter long queue to buy tickets at the station. Some passengers on chancing upon the queue soon left the station. Or else the queue would have reportedly been much longer. Union officials are now worried as Christmas season brings the highest amount of passengers which might result in even longer queues.

In order to reduce costs, Virgin has introduced automated services, through a series of ticket machines. The union has berated Virgin that the machines are responsible for travelers paying extra and for the long queues that are being formed.

The representative of the union, Tom Condor, was of the opinion that since the beginning of the economic downturn, most rail companies, in order to keep costs down, have developed many detrimental strategies. Automated machines ensured that significant man power was deducted from the company pay roll. In the mean time, the queues for tickets have just gotten longer and more cumbersome for the travelers. Also, the rail employees could provide passengers with the least expensive tickets. The machine however was not deemed to be as reliable and would often over charge passengers.

Virgin, however, retaliated by saying that the serpentine queues in Coventry were a result of a shortage of employees. Thus there was a temporary closure of its ticket offices there. In a bid to handle the Christmas rush, Virgin assured its passengers that extra employees would be hired and everything would be taken care of.

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