Travel for Less
Be flexible if you can about the day and the time that you travel. There might be a greater allocation of cheaper tickets available on different dates and times.
Travel Off-Peak. Whenever you can, avoid travelling at peak times as this is when fares are most expensive. Travelling Off-Peak means cheaper tickets and quieter trains because you avoid the busy rush-hour commute times in the mornings and evenings.
Book Early. You can buy an Advance Ticket for most journeys with most train companies up to 12 weeks ahead and save a significant amount on your train fare. Fares usually increase right up until the day of travel, so the earlier you buy, the more you could save.
Set up a Cheap Ticket Alert. If you visit their websites, most train companies offer an email alert service which lets you know when batches of cheaper tickets become available.
Check the price of Single Tickets. If you are willing to spend some time checking on websites, you can sometimes save money by breaking down a long journey on one through ticket into two or more tickets for different sections of the same journey. Also, you might find that it is cheaper to buy a Single Ticket for your Outward Journey and another Single for your Return Journey, compared to the price of a Return Ticket. Sometimes you strike lucky with this approach.
Save 1/3 with a Railcard. You could make great savings on your train travel by purchasing a Railcard if you travel regularly. There are several kinds of Railcard available each with specific eligibility criteria but these are quite varied and can cover age, disability, students, families, two people travelling together or armed forces veterans to give a few examples. More information can be found at www.railcard.co.uk >
Rover/Ranger Tickets for an area. A wide range of Rover Tickets are available for different parts of the country and if you wish to spend a day exploring an area by train, then they can offer good value for money.
They typically offer unlimited off-peak travel for one day or a number of days on all the railway lines within an area shown on a map and on the trains of all the train companies in that area. However, do check the small print as there may be some minor local restrictions.
A good example for the Peak District area is the South Pennines Day Ranger which covers Manchester, West Yorkshire, South Yorkshire and the north of Derbyshire including the Hope Valley Line and the Glossop Line (but strangely not the Buxton Line). The Adult Ticket price is £25.20 and more details can be found on the Northern trains website >
Also available for the Peak District is the Derbyshire Wayfarer ticket which offers off-peak train travel and all-day bus travel within the county. The price of an Adult Ticket is £13.40 and more details of how to purchase it are available on the Derbyshire County Council website >
For train services in the Peak District, the Derbyshire Wayfarer covers journeys between Sheffield and New Mills Central on the Hope Valley Line and between Buxton and New Mills Newtown on the Buxton – Manchester Line. It does not cover train travel between the three Derbyshire stations on the Glossop Line at Dinting, Hadfield and Glossop but it does cover bus services in that area of the county.
And finally, there is the Greater Manchester Wayfarer ticket available from Transport for Greater Manchester. Travel for a day anywhere in Greater Manchester and in parts of Cheshire, Derbyshire, Lancashire, Staffordshire and the Peak District for £14.40 by bus, tram or train.
In the Peak District the Greater Manchester Wayfarer covers off-peak rail travel on the Manchester Piccadilly – Glossop Line, the Manchester Piccadilly – Buxton Line and on the Hope Valley Line from Manchester Piccadilly as far east as Grindleford Station. More information can be found at www.tfgm.com >
East Midlands Railway
Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site
National Rail Enquiries
phone: 03457 48 49 50
phone: 0800 200 6060
Heritage steam railway
phone: 0800 200 6060
For bus and train journey planning
phone: 0871 200 2233