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After an Easter holiday marked by transport chaos, there is finally some good news for travellers. The government has announced a month-long rail sale with half-price tickets available across the country from today.

Launching the sale, Grant Shapps, the Transport Secretary, said: ‘For the first time ever, rail industry operators are coming together to help passengers faced with the rising cost of living by offering up to 50% off over a million tickets on journeys across Britain.

The scheme, which also aims to boost tourism in the UK and encourage greener travel, offers discounted journeys between April 25 and May 27 and has been billed as the biggest national rail sale ever.

Here’s everything you need to know about the Great British Rail Sale.

How long will the sale last?

The sale launched today and tickets are available for travel between April 25 and May 27, but must be purchased by May 2.

Over a million tickets are available, with most being reduced by 50pc. Some examples of fares on offer include London to Edinburgh down £47 to just £22 and Manchester to Newcastle at £10.30, half the usual price.

Customers are encouraged to purchase their tickets as early as possible, as high demand could mean some routes sell out. The Rail Delivery Group, which helped organize the sale, said: ‘The number of rail sale tickets offered by each participating rail company will vary and are limited in number, so we encourage people to act quickly because when they are gone, they’re gone.

LNER, which runs east coast mainline services, said it had “at least 75,000” rail ticket sales available, with Avanti West Coast offering a similar figure.

What types of tickets are available?

The vast majority of tickets offered will be advance fares, meaning passengers must travel on specific trains. Anytime singles and season passes are not included and tickets must be purchased at least one day prior to travel.

Customers should be aware that each train company has its own policy regarding supply and discounts are unlikely to be available at peak times on popular routes.

For example, LNER only offers Great British Rail Sale tickets between Monday and Thursday and excludes the bank holiday in early May. Likewise, the Avanti West Coast offer excludes all services between April 29 and May 3, as well as services from Euston to Manchester and Liverpool on May 14 and 22.

Unfortunately, first class tickets are also not included on some routes, such as Avanti West Coast and East Midlands Railways – although various onboard upgrade offers may seem more attractive with your standard discounted ticket. However, LNER passengers will be able to book premium tickets at a reduced price.

Stressing that this is not a blanket offer, the DfT said in a statement: “Great British Rail Sale tickets are not available on all routes, are limited and subject to availability and availability. ‘excludes.’

What routes are included?

Deals are available nationwide and include short routes between York and Leeds (available for just £2.80 instead of £5.60) as well as long-distance routes. As noted above, the most popular routes can quickly run out of tickets on sale.

Visit to see what discounts are available for your destination.

Connecting routes run by different operators don’t seem to be included – to make the most of the savings, customers should book separate tickets.

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This notice was published: 2022-04-19 19:19:13

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