Another Open Letter to East Coast Trains…

Good morning face-less soul-less customer advisor,

We got your reply. Thanks. (Sort of.) Now, you’re not gonna want to hear this, but we’re afraid “sorry” simply isn’t good enough, pal. Do you have any idea how angry we are with you right now? About this angry:

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Why are we this angry? Well. Let us break this down for you. We weren’t really hinting at an apology and a promise that you’ll half heartedly discuss your dodgy air con at a meeting sometime in the distant future. We’re not sure the thought of 15 people in suits sitting round a big table at 9:30 on a Wednesday morning going “oh, yeah, the air-cons knackered again… People complained and that.” is really going to tame any of this anger. We want a bloody refund, you punks.

We know we’re not the only people who feel this way. We were sat on a carriage with a bunch more. They were all saying how they’d complain and ask for a refund. So, in the words of Jennifer Anniston; ‘here comes the science bit’:

We reckon there was around 1000 people on that godforsaken sweat-box fridge-freezer combo flu-trap you call a train. Now let’s assume for a mental, mind-blowing second that you refunded everyone on that train the £70 or so they forked out to get to and from Edinburgh. That’s £70,000 in refund. “OUCH”, I hear you cry. However – you CAN afford this can’t you? You cheeky little monkeys! Of course you can! Because – wait for it – for the period from April 2010 to March 2011, East Coast made a pre-tax operating profit of £182.8 million and was able to pay £177 million to the Department for Transport for whom it runs the company. HAHA! You couldn’t make it up!! You could refund every single person on that train, and still have enough money left to buy them all electric cars.

But you don’t care do you? Because you’ve got us all by the short and curlies haven’t you? We don’t have a choice but to sit there and endure a terrible service, with not a slither of hope that we’ll ever see any of our precious pennies back. Because we’re stuck HAVING to use you. Let me try and illustrate this horrid situation in a short metaphorical comparison:

I run a butchers shop. Only problem is I tend to sell beef that tastes like total shit. And even though I make, oh I don’t know, £182 million pounds profit a year. I never give refunds. EVEN when customers email me saying “ugh, your beef tastes like shit“. You know why I don’t refund them? Because it doesn’t matter. They’ll come right back next week, buying my shitty beef. Because people HAVE to buy my beef. Because I’m the only butchers shop in the UK who sells beef.

Do you get what we’re trying to say here?

Oh, and by the way; we’ve both gotten over our colds that were surely helped in no small part by the wildly fluctuating temperatures we had to endure on your train. (Thanks for asking.) Rest assured that we have kept every single one of our snotty tissues, and are currently deciding the best use for them. We’ve had a lot of ideas so far – posting them to your head office one by one, sticking them to your posters, attaching them to your trains…. That sort of thing. But we think we’ve settled on a more practical option; we’re going to weave them into a makeshift snot-rag duvet that we can take with us up to Edinburgh next year when forced to sit on one of your trains: If the carriage is too cold, we can wrap ourselves up in it and cuddle, and if the carriage is too hot, we can tear bits off and fashion some nice tissue pants to strip down to.

So anyway – in summary – East Coast Trains: Stop being a shitty beef merchant. Refund people when they complain that they’ve received a terrible service. And as we’ve already appealed for you to do in a previous letter – STOP TREATING THE COUNTRY LIKE MUGS.

Yours, Spandex Ballet.

One comment

  1. Jon Barnes says:

    East Coast Trains are douchebags!!! Refund them dammit!

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