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Heading for a family day out and travelling by train? You’ve come to the right place.

Our guide to booking family train tickets will provide you with all the information you need to make your family train trip a breeze. From easy ways to save money on train tickets to offers and child fare information, we’ve got you covered. Discover top destinations, travel tips, money-saving ideas and much more in our summer train travel guide.

If you're planning a family day out in London or the South of England this summer, kids can travel by train for £2 or less

How to book family train tickets

Train ticket prices can vary depending on when you travel, the train company you travel with and the length of your journey. It can be easy for costs to stack up when booking for more than one person, so we’ve put together a few tips to help you find the best price when buying family train tickets.

Buy a Family & Friends Railcard

The Family & Friends Railcard is a great way to get discounted fares on family train travel and can be used by adults travelling with at least one child in the UK. Adults will receive 1/3 off, and children receive 60% off certain train tickets, make sure you carry your Railcard with you during your journey though.

Learn more about the Family & Friends Railcard.

Check child fares

If you’re travelling with little ones, you’re in luck – all children under the age of 5 travel for free on UK trains. A train ticket for children aged between 5 and 15 will be at a discounted price, although the exact amount can vary between train companies.

Find out more about child train tickets.

Book in advance

As train companies in the UK usually release Advance tickets 12 weeks before the departure date, booking your train tickets ahead of time is often when they’ll be at their lowest price. Depending on the train company you’re travelling with, booking in advance can also mean you’re able to book seats together with a table.

Find out more on our Advance train tickets page, or if you know the date you’d like to travel, sign up for our Ticket Alert service, and we’ll email you when your tickets go on sale.

Travel Off-Peak

It’s typically cheaper to travel during Off-Peak train times in the UK (anything outside of Monday to Friday rush hours), and these trains are usually a lot quieter than during Peak hours, meaning there’s the added bonus of being able to get seats together with your family if you can’t reserve them ahead of time. 

We mark journeys as either Peak, Off-Peak or Super Off-Peak (between 10:00 and 15:30 and from 19:15 onwards Monday to Friday) when you search for tickets on our website or app to make them easy to spot.

Learn more about Off-Peak train tickets.

 

Kids travel for £2 or less!

We’ve got your back with cheap travel for family days out in London and the South of England. Whether you’re leaving London for a day out with kids in the countryside or vice versa, there are some super cheap fares to be had.

Keep reading for more information on how you can save on kids' train travel – discounts will be applied automatically when booking on our website or app.  

How can I get cheap kids’ fares?

Southeastern

With the Kids for a Quid deal, up to four kids aged 5-15 years old travel for £1 each on Southeastern trains when accompanied by at least one adult – no date restrictions for travel. Valid for Off-Peak Single or Return tickets, as well as Advance Single tickets on any Southeastern route.

Southern, Thameslink, Great Northern and Greater Anglia

Up to four kids aged 5-15 years old travel for £2 on Southern, Thameslink, Great Northern and Greater Anglia trains when accompanied by at least one adult – no date restrictions for travel. Valid for Off-Peak Single and Return tickets.

Chiltern Railways, West Midlands Railway and LNWR

If you hold an Off-Peak Family Travelcard and are travelling to London with up to 4 children aged 5-15, each of them will travel for just £1 on Chiltern Railways, West Midlands Railway and London Northwestern Railway services.

More family train deals

There are a few more family train deals that can help you save on your family train tickets. Click on the deal you’re interested in or start a search in our Journey Planner at the top of the page – the discount will be applied automatically as you book.

Family train tickets to London

There’s nothing quite like a family day out in London – whether you’re sightseeing, going to the theatre or picnicking on one of the city’s beautiful parks, it’s a great way to spend the day or weekend. Train travel to London can quickly add up though, so we’d recommend using a few of the tips mentioned above when booking your family train tickets to London.

If you already have or are thinking about purchasing a Family and Friends Railcard, it can also give you access to discounts on museums, hotels, attractions and more. So not only will you save on train travel to London, but you could also enjoy discounted entry to fun things to do once you’re there!

Find out more about travelling to the capital on our trains to London page.

Frequently Asked Questions

We've answered some of your most frequently asked questions about family train tickets below.

How much is a family train ticket?

The Family & Friends Railcard costs just £30 for the year. If you buy a 3-year Railcard for just £70, you can save £20 compared to the price of buying three separate 1-year Family & Friends Railcards for £90.

How many people can travel with a Family & Friends Railcard?

A total of eight passengers (four adults and four children) can travel with a Family & Friends Railcard.

Are there any deals for family train travel?

Yes, there is a number of train deals you can benefit from when travelling with your family. Check out our family train deals and kids train deals sections for more details.

What ages qualify for child train tickets?

Children between 5 and 15 inclusive are eligible for child fares, which offer a 50% discount on full-price tickets. Children aged 4 or under travel for free with an accompanying adult.

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