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Virgin online train ticket system derails

It's the Railtrack effect

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Virgin's much-vaulted online booking service for train tickets has been down all day and still isn't working. The derailed service at www.thetrainline.com and www.virgintrains.co.uk is just the latest disaster to hit the UK rail system, which is arguably the worst in the world at the moment.

The VirginTrains site appears to working as normal but try and book a ticket and you get the message: "We are sorry, but the website is very busy at present. Please try again later. If you would like to attempt to access the site, please click here." The Trainline site doesn't even pretend to be up and displays the same message (it is also run by Virgin by the way).

Why so busy? Because Virgin's offer of half-price tickets offer started yesterday and although Virgin Trains' service has been dire, there's nothing we like more in this country than a bargain. Just a shame that, like Virgin's promises to give a great service, it isn't up to the job when people take it up on the offer.

Not only that but you can't get through on the phone lines and no one is even answering the HQ phones either - presumably they've all been put on the tickets lines. What a mess. ®

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