Avanti West Coast
London North Eastern Railway

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On 8th December 2019, the rail operator Avanti West Coast took over the InterCity West Coast Franchise from Virgin Trains, and still run the services today. Don’t worry though! All routes remain the same and you can book cheap Avanti West Coast train tickets with us.

If you're after Virgin Trains tickets, look no further. At Trainline, we'll show you where Virgin Trains can take you and how to book the best value fares for your journey.

To find Virgin Trains tickets, simply start a search above, and we'll show you the best available journey times and prices.

Above image source: Virgin Trains

Virgin Trains route map

Unsure about where to start your Virgin Trains adventure? Use our map to plan out where you want to go. From London, you can fly up the West Coast Main Line on high-speed services to destinations like Liverpool, Edinburgh and Manchester.

Virgin Trains were one of the primary rail operators in the UK, providing services from London Euston and a number of major terminals including Birmingham New Street, Manchester Piccadilly and Liverpool Lime Street. They operated trains on the West Coast Main Line until December 2019, before Avanti West Coast took over the franchise.

The West Coast Main Line is one of the most important railway lines in the UK, linking London with the West Midlands, North West and Scotland.

Many of the routes on the line feature high-speed Pendolino trains with no changes required, which made Virgin Trains an excellent alternative to air travel for those looking to traverse up or down the length of the country. Other trains on the West Coast Line are Super Voyagers; slightly noisier than Pendolinos, but no less comfortable! Avanti has taken over Virgin Trains’ fleet, meaning you can still enjoy high-speed travel up the West Coast!

Find out more in our Virgin Trains route map guide.

How to get cheap Virgin Trains tickets

If you're after cheap UK train tickets, check out the hints below and see how you could bag yourself a bargain. We'll even highlight the cheapest prices!

Best Fare Finder

You can use our Best Fare Finder to locate the cheapest fares for travel from London to Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool and beyond.

Our Fare Finder uses data from user journey searches to identify the cheapest fares on or around your chosen date of travel. If you’re flexible to travel at any time throughout the day, there are some great Off-Peak discounts to be found. The Fare Finder will show a seven-day view of the cheapest tickets, so consider whether you can travel on a different day to access the cheapest tickets.

 

Discover digital tickets 

Enjoy smoother Virgin Trains journeys – go straight to the train when you use tickets on your phone. 94% of our customers wouldn't use anything else! Mobile Tickets will get sent directly to your Trainline app and etickets can be opened on your phone as a PDF. Both let you skip the queues at the ticket machine and breeze straight through the gates using your phone. They’re available on most Virgin Trains journeys, so be sure to select this option when you book.

Learn more about Mobile Tickets and etickets.

Virgin Trains First Class or Standard seating

Whether you're travelling for work, leisure or a bit of both, find a seat to match. Virgin Trains offer different seating classes to suit all budgets.

Standard

Perfect if you're travelling on a budget. Enjoy access to power sockets, WiFi (for a fee), onboard entertainment and quiet carriages, as well as an onboard shop with treats and drinks.

First Class

Put your feet up while you travel in style. Luxury comes in the shape of extra legroom, at-seat service and complimentary WiFi.

Find out more about Virgin Trains First Class.

How to book seat reservations

Having a seat reservation ensures you won’t have to stand if it’s a busy service. If you book with Trainline, we’ll usually make a seat reservation for you automatically based on the preferences you state in the booking process, such facing forward or being near a power socket.

However, if you’re unsure whether you’ve successfully reserved a seat, you can do so in the ‘Bookings’ section of your Trainline account. The process differs slightly depending on the device you are using:

How to reserve a seat on our website:

Log in to your account and click on ‘My Bookings’, which you’ll find by clicking the menu icon in the top right of the page. Locate your ticket and open the ‘Manage My Booking’ tab. Click ‘Change date/time’. This should allow you to select a train and reserve a seat.

How to reserve a seat on our app:

Open our app and click on the ‘My Tickets’ tab, located at the bottom of your screen. Locate your ticket and open the ‘Manage My Booking’ tab. Click ‘Change date/time’. This should allow you to select a train and reserve a seat.

Seating plans

Wondering what the seating arrangement is on the train? Take a look at the seat map for Pendolino and Super Voyager trains. There are four First Class and seven Standard Class carriages on Pendolino trains and a similar set-up on Super Voyagers, depending on whether yours is a 5-car or 11-car train.

Avanti West Coast have since refurbished much of the Virgin Trains fleet, freshening the interior of the train. The on-board shop also remains open.

Top Virgin Trains destinations

Need a bit of information ahead of your next trip? Check out these popular Virgin Trains destinations for travel details and nearby attractions. And why not plan ahead by checking out our Virgin Trains train times page?

Virgin Train services to London

There are still regular services into London since Avanti West Coast took over the franchise from Virgin Trains.

Services to London terminate at London Euston, one of the busiest stations in the capital. There are direct trains to London from major stops on the West Coast Main Line like Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool and Glasgow.

Looking to save money on trains to London? Travel during the Off-Peak window and take advantage of discounted fares. The availability of Off-Peak fares depends on where you’re travelling from, but generally speaking, trains arriving at Euston after 11:00am will be Off-Peak. The first Off-Peak service from Birmingham New Street departs at 10:10, Manchester Piccadilly at 09:35 and Liverpool Lime Street at 09:47.

Super Off-Peak tickets are also available between London, Birmingham and Wolverhampton, offering further discounts at the quietest times of day. These are available between 11:40 and 14:00 and after 19:00 on weekdays, with slightly expanded hours on weekends.

Good to know

Travelling with Virgin Trains? Find out everything you need to know about luggage allowance, pets and other onboard Virgin Trains facilities here.

Yes, WiFi is complimentary to passengers travelling in First Class. If you're seated in Standard, however, there's a small fee for access to the service. 

Peak times depend on the route you're travelling, so please research your departure and arrival stations beforehand. At London Euston for instance, peak hours apply to trains leaving the station before 09.26 and between 15.01 and 18.44 in the evening.

Yes, you can. The service is free, but you must reserve a space in advance due to limited room onboard. You can reserve either at a booking office or by contacting Virgin Trains via phone.  

Pretty fast (depending on your destination and route). Some Virgin Trains whizz past at up to 125mph - that'll blow your hair back! Around cities and junctions though, things calm down and the trains run a little slower for safety reasons.

Routes that service Manchester and Liverpool are exclusively run on Pendolino trains. Other journeys feature a mix of both Pendolino and Super Voyager trains or sometimes Super Voyager trains only. 

BEAM is Virgin Trains’ free onboard entertainment system. Note that you’ll have to pay for WiFi before you can access it (if you’re seated in Standard). BEAM can be used either by downloading the service as an app or by visiting enjoybeam.co.uk. Once you have access, you can watch popular TV shows and movies, enjoy games or read the news. Score!

As long as your pet can physically fit on the train, then you’re good to go! In fact, you can travel with up to two pets free of charge. For any additional furry friends, you’ll have to pay a fee. There could also be a charge for larger pet carriers, but please contact Virgin Trains in advance if you're unsure.

You’re allowed to bring one item of hand luggage as well as up to two additional items. They can’t be bigger than 30cm x 70cm x 90cm, and any extra items you bring may incur a charge.

Contact information

Got a query about your Virgin Trains journey? Get in touch either online or on the telephone.

Ticket enquiries and refunds

You might find an answer to your query in our help section. For all enquiries about your booking, do not hesitate to contact us on 0333 202 2222.

Delays, lost property and onboard services

If you would like more information regarding Virgin Train times, lost property or onboard facilities, then please call Virgin Trains on 0333 103 1031.

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

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