'Shambles' as millennial railcard site crashes

Adjust Comment Print

Chancellor Philip Hammond said in his Budget speech past year that the railcards would give 4.5 million more young people a third off their rail fares. They also reassured customers at 10:20am that there were still railcards available, however there were still website difficulties due to the demand.

"Spring 2018: We're only going to sell 10,000 26-30 railcards, and the website isn't gonna work".

Due to high demand "access to buy is limited", the website said. Meanwhile, purchasing the railcard over the phone is also proving hard - The Independent has been on hold for more than 40 minutes at the time of writing (with no end in sight).

A statement released on the National Railcards official Twitter account said: "We've had an unprecedented number of people visiting our site for the 26-30 Railcard".

Tom Drury, from London, wrote: "The launch of the new railcard is a shambles".

A spokesperson for the Rail Delivery Group, which represents train operators and Network Rail, comments: "We're sorry to those who have been unable to buy a trial 26-30 Railcard this morning".

There are other restrictions: the card can only be used for pre-bought tickets, rather than those bought on the train - as is the case with many railcards. There will be a £12 minimum on tickets between 4.30am and 10am, excluding weekends and public holidays.

The 26-30 Railcard will only be available as a digital Railcard, not as a physical card.

The first trial of the scheme was on Greater Anglia services.

The website to buy the railcard, which would give eligible travellers a third off fares, crashed within minutes of opening and people aren't happy about it.

The government plans to eventually have the railcard be available for anyone aged 26-30, although there are only 10,000 for purchase today.

The chaos surrounding the railcard's launch will see many disappointed, particularly those at the upper end of the age bracket for whom this was the last chance to enjoy discounted travel until they hit 60 and qualify for a Senior Railcard.

The card is meant to be used on a smartphone, but if you lose your phone or your phone dies you can transfer the card to another phone online.