Wednesday, April 22, 2009

National Express complaints rise by 22%

I couldn't let this go by without a comment. The Newcastle Journal recently carried an article informing readers that complaints about National Express "have soared", making it the 2nd most complained about train company in the country. (They were beaten by Virgin West Coast.) A spokesman for National Excess blamed "operational issues" - in other words they couldn't "operate" a Hornby trainset, never mind real trains.

It is however interesting to note that the term "complaint" is used in this context. I asked for a "complaints" form a couple of weeks ago when Nat Excess cancelled my train yet again (operational issues of course) and was given a "comments and compliments" form.

The Journal article quoted Dave Clelland, the Labour MP for Tyne Bridge. I did actually agree with what he said but he was an odd choice. Mr Clelland much prefers to fly to London. His sky high expenses bill shows that to be the case.

Anyway, as luck would have it, I am now on a National Excess train heading home to the North East. Because of a completely unnecessary strike on the Victoria Line (something to do with the way train doors open) I ended up going on a long detour around the tube. So when I got to Kings Cross, there was no time to get a sandwich. So a few minutes ago, I headed down to the train's buffet car and discovered they are out of everything except lager, tea and crisps. I decided not to have the lager. So, hungry as I am, I've had to phone home to ask David to make me some sandwiches which I can have when I get home, which won't be til about 2.30am. Oh joy.
Sent via BlackBerry


interested said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Do you ever have anything positive to comment upon when taking an arduous journey to and from London? Not a sarcastic question, just a genuine question.
I often find that people will enjoy sharing disappointments and having their expectations lowered, however, it would be interesting to read about some positives!
Have you any positives?
I think the comments you provide are useful to those travelling and you will receive empathy but are your complaints(comments!) being directed to the top of this company and not just left for the general public to endorse and get aggrieved? I await your comment.

I am also curious to know what determined your comment that there is an 'unnecessary' strike.You do not present any facts, and just suppose it is unnecessary...

I await your comments


Andrea Cave said...

Dear Anonymous,

First of all, you do not state whether you are unfortunate enough to travel on the East Coast Mainline. You are, therefore, unqualified to ask such questions.

I travel on this line regularly, but in the opposite direction to Mr Wallace - between Newcastle and Edinburgh and, once a month, to Inverness to see my dad.

Most of the staff on these trains worked for GNER prior to National Express taking over. The staff I have got to know over the years continue to be friendly and helpful towards me. However, their smiles have turned from genuine to false. So it is clear the staff are far from happy with the new operators and I have also had my run-ins and regular complaints against this company as well.

Over to you for some genuine and not sarcastic answers - Anonymous.