Money Wellness
a train idle in a station, with staff chatting on the platform
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calendar icon28 Feb 2024

Train fare prices rising on 3rd March

This Sunday, train fare prices are set to go up by 4.9% in England.

What are regulated fares?

Regulated fares include season tickets, off-peak return tickets and super off-peak, and ‘anytime day’ tickets around major cities.

Ticket costs are decided differently around the UK, and fares for the rest of the UK are decided by each country’s Department for Transport.

In Scotland, ScotRail fares will increase by 8.7% from 1 April. This includes season tickets and flexipasses.

Wales and Northern Ireland haven’t yet confirmed any price increases.

What train tickets won’t be affected?

Any unregulated fares are set by train companies at commercial rates. These include first-class, advance, off-peak day and anytime.

How do I buy cheap train tickets?

Train tickets can be expensive, whether they’re for work, days out or visiting friends and family. There are some actions you can take to make sure you’re buying the cheapest journey.

If you’re a regular traveller, you might end up saving more with an annual season ticket. Use National Rail’s Season Ticket Calculator to see if you’ll save.

If you’re travelling in and around the area you live, you could benefit from the £2 single bus fare scheme that’s been extended to December 2024. While return prices won’t be capped at £2, it might end up cheaper to buy two single bus tickets. The cap covers 130 bus operators. Check which operators are part of the scheme on GOV.UK 

If you haven’t already got one, buy a railcard. They usually cut a third off ticket prices and most cost £30 a year. There are different types to suit where you are in life- whether you have family, you’re retired, or a student. Get yours here .

If you book 12 or more weeks in advance, you’ll usually be getting the cheapest tickets. If you use trainline, you can add your journey details to a Trainline ticket alert system and you'll get an email when advance tickets for that journey go on sale. To avoid Trainline’s fees, you can look at National Rail’s advance booking date list too.







Avatar of Lydia Bell-Jones

Lydia Bell-Jones

With a background in banking, Lydia has been writing professionally for over five years. She is passionate about helping people improve their personal finances and has a particular interest in the connection between money and mental health.

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