03.10.2022

New waiting policy for long-distance traffic

Deutsche bahn is still having a hard time competing with the now not-so-new long-distance bus lines: the existing rail network of deutsche bahn, whose routes were often still laid out in competition with carriages, makes the company comparatively inflexible. It also offers little potential for growth, which is recognizably cruder in the case of long-distance bus lines, which now deliver news of a newly established route every few days, even if the perceived long-distance bus expansion is focused on the now-green flixbuses, which are already catapulting the meinfernbus brand out of the range again. Meinfernbus may have been too german a brand to make the leap across (language) borders.

It is much more difficult for the railroads to make such cross-border leaps, since their fleet of vehicles is not fully licensed and usable on all european rail networks, not even for long-distance traffic. This is always the case when the ice trains that can travel in switzerland are in the workshop again. Then it’s over in basel sbb and the journey continues with a swiss train. However, one learns this only on express inquiry in the train. The announcement is reduced to the news that today’s trip has to end in basel for technical reasons. If you’re now traveling with a train-bound ticket, you’ll be a little confused at first.

Railroad timetable information

Sometimes, the railroad seems to be still in the (from today’s point of view) rather old age of steam locomotives, when it comes to customer information. This is obviously true even if the railroad uses modern and basically timeless media. Sometimes quite bizarre dialogues ensue.

When the search for a connection under bahn.Although the outward journey (which always began and ended with a bus route) showed well, the return journey a few hours later usually ended with an error message, a telephone inquiry did not lead to the goal and was continued by e-mail.

The answer was that the last part of the route was only served in one direction on the day in question, but apparently no trips were offered in the opposite direction. I should ask directly the operator of the bus route in question. However, they could not tell me the name of the operator, because they did not know who operated the route, which was only served in one direction on saturdays.

When i asked how to find the bus operator that does not run on saturdays on this route, they could not help me because they only had the information about the times in their records, but not about the operators.

Who believes, with it the information nirvana within the range of the regional buses, which are often operated by subsidiaries of the german course, is already comprehensively described, exchanged itself. Anyone who has ever tried to find bus connections for a disabled person or wheelchair user that are served by low-floor vehicles with low barriers gets to know the chaotic side of the regional bus system in germany.

It is by no means the case that the operator of a bus line also operates it with his own vehicles as a matter of principle. Individual routes are often assigned to subcontractors, who, however, dispatch the buses used in each case according to the availability of their own vehicle fleet. However, the operator of the bus line does not know the scheduling of his subcontractors and the information is certainly not to be found in the timetables.

Networking between long-distance and regional transport is inadequate

For many years, long-distance trains waited for delayed connections to a certain extent, but this policy was abandoned when statistics showed that trains were late every day – and that the delays kept building up over the course of the day.

With the competition from low-cost airlines, the (in)punctuality of the railroads in long-distance traffic has returned to the agenda. At the same time, demands have been made to speed up the operation of lines in order to compete in the emerging market, and the time buffers that used to exist have been eliminated. Nowadays, a delay can rarely be avoided by increasing the speed of trains “drive out”, because the line infrastructure and the fleet of wagons used no longer make this possible. They are usually already exhausted in terms of time in the timetable.

New waiting policy of the railroad in long-distance traffic

In the long-distance traffic, the railroad is currently trying a new direction – and so they have recently announced that they want to return to the waiting for the connection. At least to a certain extent.

However, if you live away from the major cities where the ices stop, you should take special care when choosing your connection. Avoid trains in the late evening hours, because the chance of missing the last regional train increases with the reintroduced waiting policy of the railroads. For the regional trains, the motto of the special item sale applies: if gone, then gone.

If the end point of the journey was noted as a rail route on the ticket and the journey on the delayed long-distance train was documented by a so-called tong impression, the passenger has a good chance of getting a so-called cab voucher for the last leg of the journey home. However, if the last leg of the journey is served by a bus, you have a bad chance, even if the bus line is operated by a subsidiary of deutsche bahn. You have to pay for the cab yourself if you don’t want to follow the online recommendations of the railroad and want to spend the longer stay until the end of the shutdown in the station.

A reconciliation of the new rail policy, which has now been allowed to lead to more frequent delays in the entire long-distance network toward the end of operations, and regional traffic does not seem to have been planned so far. Die letzten abendlichen kurse in der regionalen feinverteilung gehen standhaft davon aus, dass der fernverkehr punktlich ankommt.

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