Steven Knight Media has learned that the issue of First Class accommodation on trains is one that is even being considered by long distance train operators. Perhaps a solution would be to retain full First Class accommodation at Peak times and then use some, or all, of the accommodation for Standard ticket holders at off peak times.
The thought brings memories of the Virgin Trains initiative on West Coast back in 1997. For a premium on the Standard ticket fare passengers could use the First Class coach next to the Buffet Car. This was p[art of the Zone system for which coloured indications appeared on station platforms.
The enhanced Standard product was in the Blue Zone, but did not include the complimentary food although passengers in the Blue Zone coach could see and smell the food as it was carried through the coach to the First Class accommodation.
Steven Knight is a Transport Specialist who has over 40 years experience in the bus and rail industries as well as in specialist transport journalism. He is a member of the Chartered Institute of Journalists.