GETTY STOCK IMAGESAVE MONEY: You can save hundreds on travel by following these tips
The cost of travel in the UK is continuing to rise every year. On January 2, the price of a season ticket rocketed by 3.6%, causing an even bigger dent to commuters’ wallets.The price of train tickets overall went up by an average of 3.4%, as did London Travelcards.
But if you want to keep costs down this year, not all is lost. Experts at Loco2 – the search and booking engine for train tickets in UK and Europe – have revealed some easy ways to save money on travel.
Speaking exclusively to the Daily Star Online, they revealed these six money-saving tips:
1. Create a booking alertYou can set a booking alert on Loco2 to be notified when tickets come on sale.Commuters can run a search on their preferred dates and enter their email address when needed.
Loco2 will notify customers on the day when tickets have been released, giving you the perfect opportunity to nab the cheapest fares. Once set up, you can view and manage your alerts online.
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2. Use a railcardAlthough railcard discounts can vary between countries and rail operators, some travellers could benefit from purchasing one if they commute during peak times.Depending on the route, using a railcard can save hundreds of money on train tickets.
Most railcards give 1/3 off tickets so it’s often possible to redeem the cost of a railcard in one purchase.
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3. Look for group discountsIf you’re travelling in a group, you could be eligible for a discount on train tickets so always check before you start to book individual tickets.In the UK, GroupSave discounts (for groups of between 3 and 9 adults) will be offered by default whenever they’re available.
Just remember that all members of the group must travel together for the entire journey, so they aren’t suitable for the discount if you intend on going solo.
4. Compare single & return ticketsIn some circumstances, it could be cheaper to book a return ticket, while on other occasions you’ll save money on train tickets by booking two singles.There’s no fixed rule so the best way to find out is to simply run two searches and compare the price.
Most train operators in the UK offer open return tickets which can be cheaper than buying two singles if discounted advance fares have sold out.
5. Check for special offersRail operators regularly offer promotions, sales and special offers. These are usually for travel at short notice when the rail operator wants to stimulate sales on a particular route or date.As well as special offers, most rail operators have cheap fares that are available all year-round.
These non-flexible fares can get you amazing discounts on loads of trains.
6. Depart at less popular timesIf you can be flexible it’s normally cheaper to travel outside of peak hours. Travelling at less popular times can offer significant discounts on rail travel in the UK and across Europe.
LOCO2TIPS: The infographic shows the best time of the week to buy train tickets
You can avoid peak commuter trains and avoid school holidays if you really want to save pounds.According to the infographic, supplied by Loco2, it shows that travelling on a Wednesday is a whopping 16% cheaper than heading off for your holidays on a Friday.
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