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Widely known as the cruise capital of Europe, Southampton is a thriving maritime city with a long, varied and proud history. The Pilgrim Fathers set off from Southampton Harbour in The Mayflower to build their New World in America, as did the ill-fated Titanic on her maiden voyage. Southampton airport, as it is now called, was the setting for the maiden flight of the Spitfire, designed by a local resident, and the city's medieval walls are always popular with visitors.

Ready to book? Start a search in our Journey Planner for trains to Southampton and we’ll show you times and tickets. Keep reading to find out more about train companies, how to find cheap train tickets and what to do once you get there.

How to find the cheapest train tickets to Southampton

Trains to Southampton from London are frequent and the fast journey gives visitors plenty of time to explore the city's attractions. There are a number of ways in which you can find cheap train tickets to Southampton to help you save money and explore one of the south coast's most visited cities. Whether you are getting a train to Southampton for work or leisure, our journey planner can help you find the cheapest available tickets on the days you want to travel.

The first way you can get your hands on cheaper train tickets to Southampton is by using a national railcard. If you travel more than a few times a year, buying an eligible railcard can allow you to save up to 1/3 off the price of your train tickets*, meaning you can spend more on things to see and do in the city. To see the different types of railcards, eligibility requirements and to buy one online, check out our railcards page.

Another way to save money on train tickets to Southampton is by purchasing an Advance ticket. In most cases, the earlier you book Advance tickets, the more you will benefit from cheap fares to Southampton. Advance tickets typically go on sale 12 weeks in advance, so if you are off to hit the shops or a night out with friends pencilled in the calendar, simply lookout for the “Advance ticket” type when you search for tickets using our Journey Planner, or sign up to our Ticket alert to find out as soon as your tickets go on sale. Make sure you book these tickets as early as possible, because the longer you wait, the more the price can go up.

You could also travel at Off-Peak periods, buy return train tickets instead of two singles and catch the train as a group of between 3-9 friends and benefit from a GroupSave discount. To find out more, visit our types of train tickets page and see useful ways to get the best value train fares.

Want even more handy hints on how to save money on train tickets? Check out our cheap train tickets page.

*Conditions and peak travel time exclusions may apply on some railcard types.

Visiting Southampton

As the city is on the coast, a visit to the SeaCity Museum is a must and puts the focus on the history of Southampton, exploring its maritime connections through the ages. This is an innovative, state-of-the-art museum telling some of the stories of the millions of people who through the ages have travelled into and out of the city. As the museum offers an interactive experience, it is suitable for visitors of all ages.

Tudor House and Garden traces over 900 years of the history of Southampton and is the city's most important historic building. Recent restoration has added fascinating new displays and facilities.

Back to the sea and no trip to Southampton would be complete without a boat ride. Boat trips between one and five hours offer stunning views of the docks and some of the world's largest cruise ships. Visitors will see where the Titanic left from, and can also join Disco and Party Nights.

Still, on the water, yachting is an immensely popular pastime, and it's possible to learn the rudiments of sailing on popular courses and explore the harbours, marinas, and creeks of the Solent.


Frequently asked questions

What's the main train station in Southampton?

The main train station in Southampton is Southampton Central station, which is located just east of the city centre.

Which train companies run trains to Southampton?

There are a number of trains companies in the UK that operate trains to Southampton, including South Western Railway and Southern.

How can I get cheap train tickets to Southampton?

It’s easy to grab yourself cheap train tickets to Southampton. We’d recommend using a Railcard, buying your ticket in advance or travelling during Off-Peak hours if you can. Read our cheap train tickets guide to find out more.

Are trains running to Southampton?

Trains run frequently almost every day to Southampton, although there may be less services during the weekends and bank holidays. Check our https://www.thetrainline.com/live/arrivals/southampton-central for up-to-date information on trains to Southampton.

Can I use my Railcard to save up to 1/3 on my trip to Southampton?

Yes, there are several types of Railcards you can use to save up to 1/3 on your trip to Southampton, these include:

  • Network Railcard (London & South East Travel Zone)
  • Two-Together Railcard (Great for couples and friends who always travel together)
  • 16-17 Saver (You can save up to 50% with this one)
  • 16-25 Railcard (Ideal for students)
  • 26-30 Railcard (Also known as the Millennial Railcard)
  • Senior Railcard (For those aged 60 and over)
  • Friends & Family Railcard (Great for families of up to 4 adults with up to 4 kids)
  • Disabled Railcard (If travelling with another adult they can save too)

Having a Railcard means you can use it whenever you want outside of Peak times for a whole year too. 

Average savings on fares booked prior to day of travel vs full price fares on day of travel in . Subject to availability. Excludes coach.

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