On the day I was sailing out P&O had given me a check-in time of 14.45-15.45. The best train for me to catch was the 13.06 which was scheduled to arrive in Southampton at 14.15. Plenty of time one would think.
The train arrived 4 minutes late and by the time it reached Chichester it was 11 minutes late. And it went downhill from there. At 14.15 we were stuck in the middle of nowhere and eventually the train was sent to Eastleigh. Not a taxi in sight so I and another lady who was also destined for the ship had to wait with everyone else for a train to Southampton. Talk about nail biting. That train arrived at 15.00 and we reached check-in at 13.30. Probably the last passengers to board.
And did things improve for my homeward journey? Nope. First of all I asked the taxi driver to take me to the Platform 4 entrance of Southampton Central and he took me around the houses to Platform 1 - presumably so that he could earn another £1? Grrrr.
THEN I found that the 9.33 Brighton train had been cancelled. Had to wait another hour. The 'ticket collector' (don't know what the gatekeepers are called these days) did suggest I take a train to Haywards Heath, another to Brighton and then a train from Brighton. Two things against that:
1. I had a large suitcase, a garment bag (large) and hand baggage and there isn't a lift at Haywards Heath Station.
2. If I had gone to Haywards Heath I could have caught the Littlehampton train which would have been quicker and lot less hassle.
Had I taken either of these options it could have taken longer than the 1 hour wait + the journey.
Are Southern's staff actually trained?
Think I'm going to have to write to Southern to complain don't you?