Whether it’s to visit your friends at university, or to explore a new city over the course of a weekend, we’re all looking for ways to travel for cheap on trains. But, it’s common knowledge that every passenger doles out a different fare these days. So, here’s how to make sure you’re sitting in the savviest seat possible on board your next trip.
Split Your Ticket
The newest trend in order to take the world of cheap train travel by storm is ‘ticket splitting’. Not heard of it? Ticket splitting means using an online fare finder, such as Trainsplit or Ticketclever, to ‘split’ up the tickets involved in your journey in order to cut the overall cost down. Basically, by booking multiple short trips, instead of one long trip, the combined cost of the short journeys somehow amounts to less. Don’t fear, the fare finder does the math for you.
Pocket An Up To Date 16-25 Rail Card
Aged 16 – 25? Make the most of it and purchase a Young Persons’ Railcard before setting off on your next train outing (or turning 25!). It’s £27 for a yearly card, or £70 for one which lasts three years. You’ll instantly save a third on rail fares and off-peak Oyster travel. Keep your piece of plastic to hand, as ticket inspector’s check all aboard, and an eye out for a new 26-30 Railcard which is currently being tested!
Nab A Two Together Rail Card
Got a frequent partner in travel? Two named people travelling together aged 16 or over can bag the same savings as youngsters aged 16 – 25; a third off fares. This is an ideal way for couples or pairs of friends to travel for cheap on trains.
Search for a £1 Deal With Megatrain
Many have heard about (or had dealings with) Megabus and the cheap and cheerful joys of £1 coach travel it’s known for. Allow us to introduce you to the coach company’s sister, Megatrain. This is an online seat booking service operated by East Midlands Trains. So, if you strike it lucky and find a £1 ticket (plus 50p booking fee) on the Megatrain site, you’ll be riding the same service as passengers who booked elsewhere. Megatrain journeys to and from 7 spots between London, the East Midlands and South Yorkshire.
A Beady Eye Catches The Worm
Know when / where you’re headed next? Sign up to receive an email alert from the Trainline as soon as tickets are released, and be the first in line to buy cheap advance tickets. The sooner you book, the more you save. This way to travel for cheap on trains is a no brainer, right?
National Rail also provides a future travel chart, displaying the furthest date in the future you can buy advance tickets. FYI: it’s usually 12 weeks ahead of a journey.
Book Off Peak, Off Peak
Off peak transit is a top way to travel for cheap on trains – and avoid being crammed aboard the busiest carriages on the tracks during dreaded commuting-hours!
Another helping hand from The Trainline is their Price Predictor tool, which tells you when cheap train tickets become available.
Always Book A Return (If Returning)
We mentioned ‘ticket splitting’ at the start, but even this trendy trick doesn’t beat the oldest in the book: a return is always cheaper than two singles.
Do your research before you book your next train trip to travel for cheap on trains! Let us know how much you save in the comments!
So what are you waiting for?! Are you ready to travel for cheap the next time you ride a train? Let us know in the comment section below!
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Ashleigh Lauren is a freelance writer and blogger, specialising in travel and lifestyle content. She has a 1st-class BA in English Language & Communication with Publishing from Oxford Brookes. Read about her adventures drinking tea and exploring the world with her best friend at Tearavel.blog (https://tearavel.blog). Ashleigh co-founded Tearavel at the start of 2018, with the aim of inspiring would-be, twentysomething, female adventurers to pack their bags too.