please empty your brain below

Thanks for the clear and simple explanation.
One novelty which takes me by surprise is the idea of Advance tickets restricted only to a particular date and not to a particular train.
Seems to make sense.

Small point: the formatting of the price comparison in 2) is a bit skew-wiff on IoS (regardless of portrait or landscape) so the new price is shown under the old price.
Thanks for the direct link to the SWR page on the subject, this is still not linked or prominently displayed their home page. I am currently outside the contactless area but that will change when it gets extended to Reading, Virginia Water is just a few stops down the line. It is all a big mess especially with the new evening peak period.
As an aside, Project Oval is essentially the internal name for the project. The official public facing name is "The extension of contactless pay as you go in the South East", because why use two words when twelve will do?

A side effect of the way restrictions work for traditional tickets is that the afternoon peak kicks in for journeys starting before 1600 on longer distance journeys.

For example, if you're travelling from Shoeburyness to Windsor & Eton Riverside a journey planner will tell you the last off-peak connection departs Shoeburyness at 13:27!

dg writes: as railforummed here.
The regular cost border SWR journey I make done as an "Evening Out Return" is going up from £5 to £6.40 as that ticket is replaced by the "Off Peak Day Return". That's a hefty 28% increase on the Feltham to Egham journey.
No mention on the c2c website as to whether an off peak Travelcard will still be valid across the evening peak, as it currently is on the TfL network (just a note that ‘Flexi’, weekly, monthly and annual season tickets are exempt).
I got a message about fares from c2c 3 days ago - thanks for helping to make sense of it.
Malcolm of Kent - that would be because those tickets are actually Off Peak Day Returns, rather than Advance tickets. Not that you'd know it from that (unintentionally, I think) misleading sentence of theirs.

For what it's worth, Railcard-discounted tickets benefit from the extra 40% discount as well.
Islander - Off-Peak Day Travelcards (thank heavens for their retention!) will continue to be valid in the evening peak.
As AP has discovered, Evening Out Returns are being withdrawn. Currently these are very good value for journeys starting after mid day and avoiding the evening peak. That will be a 23% increase in the cost of a journey on SWR that I regularly make.
Another blow to the low paid, poor or self-employed as rail companies find more ways to restrict travel and squeeze more money out of you - at risk ultimately of fines and criminal records - for the privilege of travelling at certain times
This all only makes sense when contactless (including Railcards) is introduced. When that happens you’ll just be charged a single fare appropriate to the time you travel, the peak is a real cost to the railways with extra staff and materiel (sic). Conversely you don’t have to come back the same day, and if you travel back on an off-peak service you’ll save.
The image seems to contradict your text regarding evening peak services - it says that any service into or leaving a London station between 1600 and 1900 will be peak prices.
Ian - The National Rail website says “from or via a London station”, not “going into or leaving” as on the leaflet, and having scoured ticketing websites I can confirm that the National Rail website is correct.
Will this all change again on 1st January when, presumably, the annual prices increase happens?

dg writes: March 2024.
Thanks for the information.

The roll out of the surveillance state continues, the cheapest tickets are only available from a website (so bank details, more mobile tracking) and only to those who like 'planned' spontaneity.

Why does an Advance ticket need to be purchased 3 or more days before travel on what is effectively a commuter line, I'm not catching a plane.
Thanks for the clear explanation. Making booming weekend travel more expensive to offset the cheaper weekday travel seems logical.

I imagine confusion if the 15:50 service from Fenchurch Street departs 12 minutes late - is that now a peak service?
Eventually Greater Anglia will do something similar, presumably

I wonder if that will correct the issue that fast trains get the cheaper advance pricing but stoppers do not, which makes travel to e.g. Withham, Marks Tey/Sudbury more expensive than Colchester
MilesT: It's not that stopping trains as such don't get the cheap advance tickets, it's that the smaller stations don't. Advance tickets to Ipswich, for instance, are mostly offered on stopping trains.
Will need to check whether the Pensioners weekday Rover will continue. Currently can go backwards and forwards as much as you like off peak Monday to Friday from any C2c station to Upminster for £7 and for C2c in Greater London £10
I wonder if my Freedom Pass will be valid on c2c during the evening peak between Fenchurch Street and Upminster.

dg writes: yes.

I know it isn’t on weekday mornings before 0900 (and District Line too). The evening scenario could be become a bit bizarre. I imagine that the card readers at FST would deny me access, so I would have to travel from Tower Hill to Upminster by District. But what would stop me from crossing the platform face at Barking to continue my journey by c2c? Who would know when I touched out at Upminster?
Thank you for the Freedom Pass info.
The time registered is the time you touch in at the barrier - not the real-time departure of the train.
Julian Walker - It is for TfL owned travel/gates, but will it be for rail with these changes and Oval more generally?

I suspect it will be the scheduled time of the train that controls the validity (as happens today for Offpeak/Super Offpeak/Evening out), but I also suspect that the actuality of charging will depend on gate time.
But could technically wind up travelling on a delayed train with an invalid (virtual) contactless ticket, as the wrong fare would be charged.
MilesT: As the fare is worked out during overnight processing, as long as you touch in and out correctly and keep within the Contactless area (and journey time limits) you don't have to worry about it. There will be winners and losers from both sides of this.

More generally, none of this makes any sense because it's a Tory party commitment to roll out contactless ticketing so they are making us shoehorn TfL's contactless system into a mainly un-barriered system with time restrictions that don't work. It's all a bloody mess, made even worse by the fact that the Contactless bit of it won't even work till next year (they can't tell us when, even internally) but the fares changes were already set in stone for the 3rd December.

Blame the DfT for this mess, for rolling it out before it was ready simply to try and meet an arbitrary deadline.

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