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Looking to travel to the northeast of England or Scotland? You’ll soon find yourself on a brand-new Azuma train, operated by London North Eastern Railway (LNER).

Rolling out to commercial service from mid-May 2019, the futuristic Azuma trains will bring increased speed, comfort and reliability to passengers travelling between London, the East Midlands, Yorkshire, North East England and Scotland.

At Trainline, we’ll provide you with the best fares for Azuma trains, making it simple for you to book tickets and pay with confidence.

What are Azuma trains?

Azuma is the name for a new fleet of diesel-electric hybrid trains run by London North East Railway (LNER) which formally entered commercial service on 15 May 2019. 

They will run on the East Coast route from London King’s Cross to the North East of England and eventually to Aberdeen and Inverness in Scotland.

Azuma trains use technology from the Japanese bullet train, making journeys faster and quieter. ”Azuma” means “East“ in Japanese – the name is a homage to the fleet’s Japanese technological roots.

LNER plans to replace the current 45-strong fleet operating on the East Coast route with 65 Azuma trains. Hull will be the first destination to be served entirely by Azuma. Routes to the North East will switch to Azuma-operated services later in 2019, with increased services connecting London to Lincoln and Harrogate.

Azuma trains interior

Azuma passengers will have the option of travelling in Standard Class or First Class. All seats will have access to a plug socket, with First Class passengers also benefitting from an at-seat USB charging port. All passengers will also have access to the onboard Cafe-Bar and snack wagon.

Standard Class

Standard Class carriages include –  

  • Free WiFi
  • Power sockets at every seat
  • Window blinds in all carriages
  • Electronic seat reservation displays
  • 7 cm of extra legroom

First Class

First Class carriages include -

  • Complimentary two-course meal
  • Reclining seats
  • Power sockets and USB sockets at seats
  • Ambient lighting
  • LNER’s best ever WiFi connection

Azuma destinations

LNER plans to roll out Azuma services running beyond Leeds and Hull later in 2019 - we'll keep you updated as they do.

Frequently asked questions

The first Azuma train officially entered service on 15 May 2019, running from London King’s Cross to Leeds. LNER has also replaced its daily service to Hull via Selby with Azuma trains.

Over the coming months, LNER will roll out Azuma services on routes to the North East of England and Scotland – they’ll be announced as they are decided. By the end of 2019, there will be more services from Lincoln and Harrogate to London.

By December 2021, LNER plans to run regular services between London and Scotland. Azuma will whisk passengers from London to Edinburgh in just four hours, with regular journeys from London to Leeds – taking only two hours – also becoming typical throughout the day.

The train can reach a maximum speed of 225 km/h but is limited to 200 km/h while travelling.

Both. Equipped with “bi-mode” technology, Azuma trains can switch between electric power via overhead electric wires and diesel power. Most of the time, the trains will run on electricity, but the diesel engine will kick in when required - where there are no power cables available, for example. Azuma's top-spec engine will filter out harmful emissions by 90% compared to existing high-speed train engines, making for a quieter journey.

Good to know

Can I take a bicycle on an Azuma train?

Yes – but make sure you book in advance! Azuma trains are equipped with special compartments for storing bicycles. All bikes must have a reservation – spaces are limited, so book early! Folding bikes can be stored alongside bags on luggage racks. There are eight bicycle spaces on a nine-coach train and four spaces on a five-coach train.

Are Azuma trains wheelchair accessible?

Yes. Each 9-coach Azuma train has four wheelchair spaces – two in Standard Class and two in First Class. They are adjoined by two companion seats. As with the rest of the seats on the Azuma, wheelchair spaces have power sockets to hand.

Are pets allowed on the train?

Furry friends are welcome on-board Azuma trains! You’re allowed up to two small animals with you, provided they are not taking up an extra seat. Each extra animal after the first two will cost £5.

Is there WiFi on Azuma trains?

Yes. Standard Class and First Class carriages have free WiFi, with First Class passengers enjoying LNER’s fastest ever connection.

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