I purchased two "Advanced Single" tickets for May 20 on March 2nd and paid just £5! Bargain, yes. Today I've been informed:

Unfortunately, Great Western Railway has let us know that part of your journey from London Paddington to Oxford on Saturday 20 May has been affected by a change to the timetable. The Great Western Railway service will no longer stop at Oxford.

Digging around it looks like there will be trackworks on the day and the line is closed. Trainline is offering two alternatives:

  • Rebook with Chiltern Railways and pay another £120 to get there an hour slower on an all-stops train (different line?), or
  • Rebook with Great Western Railway and pay another £120 to get there an hour slower by bus.

Both these options look undesirable. However the email also declares...

Your ticket is valid for the next available Great Western Railway service that's arriving at Oxford, provided you're still within any relevant Operator and time conditions of your ticket

So, third option, "do nothing and rock up with these tickets"...

Is the replacement Bus "within [the] relevant Operator" constraint of the ticket, such that I can take the bus without additional payments?

  • 1
    Looks like a fairly major disruption as the Nuneham Viaduct is deemed unsafe.
    – John95
    May 6, 2023 at 5:34
  • In the end, we rolled up with those tickets and jumped onto the first Great Western train headed for Oxford. It terminated and we all got onto lush coaches at some station. It was all quite routine and casual. Ticket checking was very minimal. People sat anywhere, so don't get excited about the seat allocations, it was ignored. I was extremely disappointed that no-one offered their seat to the very elderly lady, even when the official rail attendant shouted for a volunteer. English chivalry was dead that day.
    – John95
    Aug 14, 2023 at 0:52

1 Answer 1


Rebook with Chiltern Railways and pay another £120 to get there an hour slower on an all-stops train (different line?), or

You can simply take this option (without having to pay £120); your ticket will be valid on that service. This is made clear in the Trainline link you added:

To assist with your journey, you may use your ticket on the following at no extra cost:
  • Avanti West Coast via any reasonable route
  • Chiltern Railways via any reasonable route (please note, Chiltern Railways services to and from Oxford will be extremely busy)

You can even use the London Underground for no extra cost (for example, to get to London Marylebone). In fact, you can take any option they've provided in the above link for no extra cost.

Note that I'm assuming that you want to go to Oxford.

  • 3
    That quote you lead with isn't the most helpful start - it reads like the OP needs to pay again and they don't (as you correctly say below) May 6, 2023 at 6:57
  • 2
    Indeed, I've approved the suggested edit for this reason. May 6, 2023 at 8:12
  • Avanti West Coast does not seem to provide a route from London to Oxford: you might need to change to a Cross Country service at Coventry, but even if that were "reasonable" it is not clear that GWR ticket holders can use them on Cross Country services (though the opposite does seem possible)
    – Henry
    May 6, 2023 at 23:26
  • O.P. here: The "distruption info" does declare I can use the tickets on the Chiltern Line without added cost. Thanks. I note copious warnings it that will be extremely busy. On the trainline website, to ensure my seat, I am not being offered an exchange of my current booking for a fresh Chiltern booking, without paying another 120 pound. I guess I take my chances on the day. You've at least confirmed I have a valid ticket either way. I will probably opt for the bus alternative. Cheers.
    – John95
    May 7, 2023 at 1:53
  • 3
    @John95 There is no need to "take my chances" - it's clearly stated that you have these options, and you can do it without hesitating. Staff should be familiar with what you're doing, and if there's any confusion, just show them that Trainline document. Also: regarding a new seat booking, Chiltern doesn't even offer that as an option (chilternrailways.co.uk/13-it-possible-reserve-seat), so you can just go on the day and pick any available seat. You don't have to "inform" Trainline or anything like that. May 7, 2023 at 4:13

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