As a parent, travelling with children by train can feel a little daunting. Keeping everyone entertained doesn't have to be stressful though. Pack some snacks and take your troops out for the day. Travelling by train with children is easy. Here are some top tips for taking your kids on the train.
Look for child train tickets
Children between the ages of 5 and 15 get a 50% discount on full adult fares for the majority of routes. Some UK train companies also offer the Kids for a Quid deal, which allows up to 4 kids to travel for just £1 on a return journey when accompanied by an adult during off-peak times. If they're four or under, they travel for free! Learn more about how to book child train tickets.
Avoid peak travel times
Keep your little ones away from the rush-hour commute for as long as possible – they’ll know all about it soon enough! Avoid travelling before 09:30 and between 16:00-18:30 for your best chance of emptier carriages and cheaper fares.
Use tickets on your phone
Not only will it give you one less thing to remember, using tickets on your phone will help you save time at the station. You won't have to queue to collect tickets - because if there's one thing that's sure to turn a happy child into a grumpy one, it's a queue.
Obvious as it is, everyone knows children entertain other children (and wear them out!) better than adults. So, before you arrange a big day out, gather your respective clans and head out in search of adventure. The kids will have a blast and you'll get a dose of adult conversation. Amen!
Stay ahead of the game
If you’re taking the train this half term make sure you know precisely where you need to be and when. And naturally, because you're travelling with children, allow plenty of extra time... You know, for when they have an absolute meltdown because you've forgotten their favourite toy. Why not play a game of guessing when the train will arrive? You can check our app's Live Tracker to see real-time arrival times and completely blow your kids' minds when you get it spot on. How do grown-ups just know everything?
Flex your money-saving superpowers
You need to be super-powered to get things done in a house full of little people, or at least have an extra pair of arms! Luckily, when it comes to booking train and coach travel, our money-saving app does the legwork for you. Book tickets in an instant using budget-friendly hacks like National Railcard discounts and GroupSave. You can save 1/3 on adult fares and 60% on children’s tickets with a Friends & Family Railcard.
Even children who have outgrown their pushchairs need more space than adults. They like to stretch out, swap seats, look out the windows on both sides. On a busy train though, finding a spacious spot is sometimes easier said than done. So tap into BusyBot and find yourself a carriage with empty seats.
Finally, here are a few kit list essentials:
- Wet wipes (so many wet wipes)
- Trainline app
- Spare clothes
- More spare clothes
- Snacks for when you eat the snacks
- Colouring-in stuff
- Tablet with their favourite shows downloaded