Posted by: travelrat | November 15, 2010

World Travel Market … Again

London: 9th November 2010

I said last year would definitely be the last time I visited the World Travel Market. You see, they jacked up the rail fares again, and the ‘return of investment’ was getting less and less, and it was getting so that I just couldn’t afford it.

But then:

National Express revised the time table for their coaches to London from here. They put extra services on, and their timings fitted in nicely with the WTM. And, their fares are a fraction of those of South West Trains.

That is, when the buses turn up!

The bus I intended to catch broke down, and there wasn’t a replacement available. So, it left two hours late, which wasn’t a lot of good to me. But, the people at the bus office apologised profusely, and issued me with a ticket for the following day.

Now, this isn’t the first time I’ve had trouble with National Express, but, each time, they’ve dealt with it courteously, efficiently and satisfactorily, so I don’t have any real issue with them.

Unlike the Docklands Light Railway, which has given problems every time I’ve used it … usually, I take the Tube to Canning Town and walk to the ExCel Centre, rather than use it. This time, a train had failed at Custom House, the station for ExCel, and the staff were, as usual, herding passengers around like a lot of sheep. Loudspeakers brayed advice to take the bus … but, they didn’t say which bus to take, or where it went from.

Which resulted in a whole load of bemused foreigners wandering aimlessly around Shadwell. Me, I waited till the line was cleared.

So, when I got there, I went straight to the Press Centre for a coffee, before bracing myself for a few hours of collecting information, brochures and swag! But, more about that next week.


  1. Hi Keith,
    Some of our public transport here in Australia is not the best either. I had a friend stay with us for a couple of nights, and she decided to catch the train to a place about 25km from were I live, I offered to drive her but she loves trains, and was looking forward to the short trip and the day out.

    Anyway, as it turned out, they were working on the lines, and the passengers had to get out, this was about half way. They were told to get on a bus, and go beyond where they were fixing the lines, and then hop on another train. Total confusion.

    You would think they would organize something a bit better than that wouldn’t you.

  2. Hi, Mags!

    It could be that the DLR just can’t cope with the numbers attending the WTM; the only other ways of getting there fairly efficiently are to walk from Canning Town (about 15 mins) or (I think!) take a boat down the river.

    What we really need in London is something like the Brisbane busway … then, maybe, they could organise a shuttle service from the major railway stations.

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