I was wandering near to Torun railway station, which is on the other side of the Vistula River to the old part of the city, and thought that if the ticketing purchasing process was easy then I’d take a little return train journey.
I’ve been to Bydgoszcz before and I wanted to take a short-distance journey (R is Regio, or local), so the train to Kutno seemed the best option. The city of Wloclawek was on the way to Kutno, so I settled on that.
And there was a machine, which pleased me greatly, as this makes things much easier. There’s an English option and it listed the various trains that I could get. Given the number of possible trains (there are faster and more expensive options), this is not an easy process for a Polish-only speaking ticket clerk and an English-only speaking idiot trying to buy a ticket, so machines are the way forwards…..
This confused me, in particular, the Taryfa Województwa Kujawsko-Pomorskiego option. I knew that was the region that both cities were in, but I was a little concerned that it was only available to local residents who held some card. I thought it might be safer to purchase the single ticket option, but that was more money, so I risked getting the cheaper fare. I’m not entirely reckless though, I Googled the ticket just before boarding and I was pleased that it wasn’t a kid’s ticket that I’d bought.
It transpired that this ticket is a legacy of European Union rules on ensuring market liberalisation and consumer choice. Rights and wrongs of that, judging from my journey today, it’s led to a near perfect experience for the customer, with insanely cheap prices and new trains.
The ticket, which doesn’t require validation as it’s timed, cost 9.20zl, or about £1.80. No wonder Flixbus can’t charge more than they do with the rail network charging prices like this….. An equivalent journey in the UK with the once excellent Greater Anglia is around five times more expensive, with the cheap options being smashed away under the period of management of Jamie Burles. Anyway, that’s not for here….
Clear signage, which was also replicated on the train itself.
Not a very good photo, but the carriage was clean and although it was busy, it wasn’t difficult to get a seat. There was power at every seat and the guard was friendly and helpful when she came through the train. The journey departed and arrived at every station at the timetabled time, all very smooth and efficient.
Entirely glorious and a credit to the Polish rail network.