Off Peak Travelcard to Off Peak Saver

Page last modified/checked: Sunday, 10th August, 2008

It was soon found that the conditions of availability of the off peak travelcard was often misunderstood by those who purchased them. Public transport users had learnt, and correctly so, that the term "travelcard" stood for unlimited, all-day travel on all modes. Unfortunately, some attempted to try this despite the restrictions applying to their off peak tickets.

In an effort to alleviate this problem and better emphasise the savings to be made by purchasing off peak tickets, they were renamed "off peak saver". All existing stock was withdrawn and replaced by new tickets reflecting the name change which went on sale from Monday 23 July 1984. The leaflet promoting off peak tickets was also reprinted with slight alterations.

There were many subtle alterations to the off peak tickets over time and these are illustrated and described below in order of their occurrence.

The OP overprint on off peak tickets supplied for the first accounting period of the neighbourhood system was so faint as to be almost indiscernable.

This was improved on stock supplied from the next accounting period commencing 11 December 1983.

And further darkened on subsequent issues.

New stock supplied in mid-July 1984 reflected the name change from off peak travelcard to off peak saver. Note also that the OP overprint now moved towards the top left hand corner. This appears to have continued on stocks supplied for at least another 12 months.

Rear of off peak travelcard

Rear of off peak saver

At left is the rear of an original off peak travelcard referring to the "Central Area". At right is the rear of the later off peak saver where the wording has been altered to "City Saver area". We have observed that all neighbourhood transport maps and the launch leaflet for off peak travelcards correctly identified the City Saver area. In comparison, other original neighbourhood publicity and the rear of the ticket itself used the terms "City Area" and "Central Area" respectively.

It was pointed out that the conditions of use on the rear of off peak saver tickets did not properly emphasise that the rail journey to and from the station of issue could not be broken. At a later date, the wording was altered to read "a continuous journey".

Despite all these alterations, the conditions on the rear of off peak tickets were never completely reliable. As well as unlimited tram and bus travel, off peak tickets had always allowed unlimited train travel within the City Saver area. We have never sighted an example with conditions reflecting this.