On my recent short break I went on a couple of train journeys. Not only was it very enjoyable to sit back and take in the scenery rather than having to drive and navigate, it also turned out to be somewhat of a money-saving venture too. Here’s why travelling by train can save you money in some rather unexpected ways…
1 TRAVEL COSTS
Sometimes it makes sense to travel by car – especially if there are 7 of you travelling together in a people-carrier, as the cost per ticket probably adds up to more than the cost of the fuel to power your vehicle. That said, there are GroupSave schemes to cut costs when groups travel together on trains, so do your research first! And certainly when it’s just a couple of you in the car it’s often less expensive to take the train, especially with the savings you can get with advance train tickets.
For example, my husband and I travelled to Edinburgh from Preston earlier this year and it only cost us £12 in advance. The fuel would have added up to much more and, if we’d had a vehicle with us, we probably would have hopped in the car at every opportunity rather than walking or using the trams. So by simply not having a vehicle with us, we saved even more money on fuel.
2 ARRIVING AT THE DESTINATION
One important reason that travelling by train can save you money is that you don’t have to pay for parking when you arrive at your destination. This is another bonus that I appreciate every time that I travel to Cambridge by train. If you don’t already know it, the cost of parking is crazy in Cambridge City Centre, which probably explains why so many people cycle!
Actually, the cost of parking has put us off going to some cities altogether, so the fact that travelling by train delivers you to your destination without having to find and pay for parking (and worrying about cutting your time short to rush back to the car) is a huge money-saving bonus.
If you’re planning a day out by train, do your research online to find out whether your train ticket entitles you to any discounts on popular attractions. For example, if you get the train to Luton with Thameslink the company will also give you discounts on days out, like 2-for-1 entry at top London attractions and museums.
During our holiday, we travelled on the Kent & East Sussex steam railway to Bodium Castle and got money off the National Trust entry price to go into the castle just by showing our train tickets! I’ve done some research and I think you’d find it difficult to find any attraction in London that isn’t on the 2-for-1 entry offer with your train ticket, so hop online before you plan your day out.
MEALS ON WHEELS
One thing that I couldn’t quite believe when started looking into train travel is that some transport tickets actually give you money off food! What?! You can get 2-for-1 on main meals in restaurants in some cities, which can add up to big savings if you’re eating out in London. I also discovered 3-for-2 offers on ice creams, as well as afternoon tea deals for pairs travelling together.
And, seeing as you’re not driving home, you can even take advantage of Buy-One-Get-One-Free cocktails in the capital. Of course, the discount meal deals vary depending on your destination but it’s worth looking online before you travel to see what food offers are available.
Let me know what deals you’ve found and ways you’ve saved money when travelling by train the comments below. It would be good to hear what your local train service offers in the way of advanced tickets and days out deals 🙂
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This blog post is a collaboration. The pink links in this post may indicate a collaborative link or information source. Contributed by Emily Taylor.