Check all options before travelling.
These days, with such a variety of options for travel, it is good to check thoroughly all the available routes and fares before purchase. I’ve discovered that by using the advance purchase option combined with a railcard, one can find very reasonable and competitive fares. It is of course helpful if the traveller can go at any time during the day. This gives one the choice of all the cheap fares on offer for that day. The online service I use is Southwest Trains.
Good also to explore taking an alternative route. The other day I found the difference in a fare could vary as much as £50 one way if I travelled from another nearby town. This avoided travelling through London. For me, this was viable as I could travel to the alternative station by bus free of charge with my national bus pass. A very attractive option.
The Oyster Card system in London is a good one too. This is a top-up travel card which you can obtain for a £5 returnable deposit. It is excellent as it can be swiped at each station in your travels. It even adjusts the fare to give you discounts on off-peak times. I’ve found it a great option.
The other day I discovered a single train fare to London from Somerset town for only £11 and that was a First Class seat – actually cheaper than the Second Class fare for that day. The single fare can be as low as £9.95 when using a rail card and booking early using Trainline.
A further experience on the Underground was very refreshing. While topping up my Oyster Card, the officer noted that I had made an error while using the card and thus had overpaid for a journey. He generously adjusted the credit to relect the error. Such customer-care is much appreciated. Well done London Transport…..
This is an option worth exploring. Fares ranging from £1 each way from selected stations to London plus administration fee of 50p. These need to be booked up early to get the best deals. http://www.megatrain.co.uk/landing.php
Apparently if you renew your railcard online, you can make a good saving by buying a three-year card. Worth looking into. I find that the annual card is a good saving but this sounds very interesting.
Have found using SouthwestTrains for buying ones tickets online is an excellent service. They seek to allocate just the right seat and by exploring a range of departure times one can save several pounds. I travelled from London to Manchester the other day for just £7 one way. It was an excellent journey. Also had good connections and fares from Yeovil to Oxford return.
STOP PRESS: Oyster Card upgrade: Recently I discovered it is possible to transfer your senior railcard function to your OysterCard. This I have now actioned. Well worth exploring…. On slight downside, you need to remember your renew-date.