I'm passing this on to raise awareness for those who book advance tickets so that they don't miss out, so I'd appreciate 'hot' votes even though these changes are more 'cold' for me. I just got this alert:
"You can now book tickets for travel on all Virgin Trains East Coast services up to Friday 2 June 2017.
Dates excluded from travel
25-26 December 2016
All weekends from 11 March 2017 onwards
13, 14, 17, 28 April 2017
1, 26 and 29 May 2017
So whatever you've got planned in a few months, get there with our cheapest fares - and have some extra pennies for your trip... or our delicious on-board treats."
Previously, only tickets to/from stations north of York were bookable 6 months in advance, from now it's all stations so this is an important change for those travelling to/from Leeds and more southerly stations).
Some pros and cons from a personal perspective:
* if you know your plans 24 weeks in advance, and are travelling weekdays, you've got a better chance of getting the cheapest fares.
* only weekdays plus other exclusions. I regularly travel down to London Friday, back Sunday, so now need to buy the Friday ticket 24 weeks in advance and the Sunday 12 weeks in advance.
* unlike the 12 week advance tickets, you can only book these to/from stations on the Virgin East Coast route. There is an extra expense to buying that journey separately (+£3.70 vs +50p each way in my case). Also Virgin are obligated to pay for a taxi to get you to the destination on your ticket if their delay causes you to miss your last connection (it's happened twice to me this year - taxi to the door got me there earlier than if I'd caught the train and walked home!)
* just from the dates I've looked at, there seem to be fewer trains on which the cheapest advance fares are available.