We test – Launched on Tuesday, the platform will gradually replace all railway company sites and applications. A redesign aimed at making life easier for passengers. Is he really successful?
What if SNCF finally realizes that to encourage passengers to take the train, above all it has to facilitate its use? Until now, the main quality of the company’s applications and websites has not been simplicity. To find out if a train is delayed, you need to go to the parent company’s website: SNCF.com. To establish your itinerary, consult the SNCF assistant. To change a professional ticket, download the TGV Pro app. To take advantage of Prime Tickets, earned with your frequent traveler card, connect to TGVinoui.sncf. To buy tickets, finally, we oui.sncf…
This media quality turned out to be a nightmare for users, even experienced digital users. Abandoning voyages-sncf.com for oui.sncf is the culmination of this happy legacy. But the “yes” episode finally ends. It predicts the possible disappearance of the “inOui” brand, which is not very original in use – which one day dared to say “I take a yes” instead of “I take a TGV»?
The new management of SNCF Voyageurs measured this disorganization and the resulting headaches (complexity of tariffs and exchanges and returns, incompatibilities of different systems, etc.) and launched a massive program to reintegrate these different platforms. oui.sncf, the most important of them – it is one of the largest and oldest merchant sites in France – is disappearing in favor of SNCF Connect, presented at a press conference this Tuesday morning. On smartphones, an update is required to access new applications. On the web, the oui.sncf site automatically redirects to sncf-connect.com.
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More clarity and simplicity…
Initially, SNCF Connect will integrate oui.sncf and SNCF Assistant. Among its advantages, we note the ease of use and a refined search engine. If you have several discount cards, the site now displays different associated rates For exchanges and refunds, you can now pay the difference in fare only without paying for your first ticket to issue a new one. The application is in dark mode, a choice assumed by SNCF to underline its less energy-efficient nature for smartphones.
Despite these advances, the announced major simplifications still come up against several drawbacks. First, the carrier and ticket issuer are two separate entities. Although SNCF operates your journey, for example between Paris and Lyon, tickets purchased on SNCF Connect are issued by… a travel agency of SNCF. However, travel agencies do not have the right to touch tickets issued by other travel agencies. Therefore, even if your ticket was issued by the trainline or your local agency, you cannot change it in SNCF Connect. Business travelers are therefore interested in having the TGVpro app, at least initially, for example to exchange them.
…despite some difficulties
SNCF Connect describes your door-to-door route in more detail. This way you can enter your departure and arrival address instead of stations and the best solution can be given till the last kilometer. But initially, the site only sells parts offered by mainline trains. For TER tickets, everything will depend on the goodwill of the regions. Some of them are very jealous of the tariff freedom granted to them by the state for transport, such as New Aquitaine or the southern region, and only authorize the sale of TER tickets to the SNCF. Even if it means complicating the lives of connecting passengers… While the new platform already has carpooling and coaches, other “mobilities” will be added, such as self-service scooters and bicycles, VTC or passenger cars. Avis rental
We regret the loss of some functions, such as the best price calendar and result filters (time, price, match, etc.) which we are sure, will be restored in the coming weeks. Similarly, it is no longer possible to know the composition of your train approved by the SNCF assistant; But it is useful to know if its TER will be a short or a long train, or if there are vacancies in an Intercités with non-compulsory reservations. In the case of ticket QR code display, the brightness is not automatically increased as in oui.sncf, which may lead us to manually adjust it if there is a problem reading by the gate or controller.
Finally, there are states within the SNCF. Eurostar, Thales, Lyria: All have their own operating, exchange and refund rules. It is more convenient to book through SNCF Connect directly on their official website. As for Ouigo tickets, they can be purchased on the new platform… but you’ll need to go to the official Ouigo.com website to change your tickets. Will computer scientists succeed in simplifying this highly complex and confusing system? The road can be long…
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