9 and ¾ reasons to travel by train
Everyone knows trains are more romantic than planes, all rushing scenery and black and white movies. But why else should you travel by rail? Here are 9 (and ¾) reasons…
1. Awesome views from the windows
On a train ride there’s always something to catch your eye – from skyscrapers and landmarks to mountains and glens. Travelling through the Great British countryside along the East Coast Main Line can throw up breathtaking sights, such as:
- Angel of the North. Antony Gormley’s famous statue greets you as you head into Newcastle-Gateshead.
- Durham Cathedral. The majestic Norman building will stir you from your slumber as you approach Durham.
- Lindisfarne. Sweeping views of the Northumberland coast and Holy Island await between Newcastle and Berwick.
2. Ease of boarding and no check-in times
Consider this scenario – you arrive 2 hours early, queue in a long line, queue in another long line, put your liquids and gels in a clear bag and take off your belt and shoes. There’s a lot of things you must do before you can actually get onto a plane.
Travelling by train means you can arrive minutes ahead of your departure time and walk straight to your platform.
3. It’s your own pop-up office
Ever tried working on a plane? With no proper desk space and not all services carrying Wi-Fi or plug sockets it can be tough.
Our trains make a great pop-up office. Whether you’re living it up with extra legroom in First Class or have been savvy enough to pre-book a table seat in standard.
You can get onto your emails with our on-board Wi-Fi, and if your laptop or phone runs out of juice there are power sockets aplenty – all in standard class. And if you really need to concentrate you can book a table in a quiet coach.
4. Friendlier to the environment
Want to do your bit for the planet? Trains are more energy efficient than planes and less damaging to the environment as train emissions aren’t released directly into the upper atmosphere. When it comes to planes, trains or automobiles, we've got the lightest footprint.
Don’t believe us? Compare your car journey or flight to our trains with our Carbon Footprint Calculator. It uses things like cups of tea or hours spent watching telly to show you the emissions savings of going by train.
5. No luggage limitations
Most airlines charge a fee just to check in 1 bag if it’s not classed as a carry-on item. On our trains you can bring as many as 3 pieces of luggage on board at no extra cost – from suitcases to rucksacks. Bigger or additional items can go in to the guards’ van.
What’s more, the overhead storage spaces are roomy, so you don’t have to wait for people taking an age to cram their baggage into a space that doesn’t exist.
6. No extra cost to choose a seat
Many airlines also charge you for the privilege of booking a seat. When you’re choosing a seat on a train, it’s completely free, whether you want a window to gaze from or a table to work at or the peace of a quiet coach – we’ve even got you covered if you don’t like travelling backwards.
7. Land slap-bang in the centre of the city
The railways link towns and cities. Built by navvies in the 1800s long before cars, it would have been pointless to have stations miles outside of the places they served. From Liverpool and London to Leeds and York, railway stations are at the heart of the city.
So instead of taking an expensive taxi ride or shuttle bus from miles outside of town, you can step off your train and be right in the thick of the action - just moments from your hotel, historic attractions, music venues or the shops.
8. Free on-board boxsets and movies
BEAM, our snazzy new free on-board entertainment service, allows you to stream blockbuster movies and TV box sets direct to your own device. So if you’re travelling from Edinburgh to London you’ll have plenty to keep you occupied on the journey. Just download the app at home before you travel.
9. Brief Encounters (or a friendly chat)
Railways and romance go hand in hand. From the chaste goodbyes of 1940s movie Brief Encounter and chugging steam trains to the views of the snow-capped Scottish Highlands on the East Coast Main Line. With a long journey before you, why not strike up a conversation? With lush scenery to admire and conversations to be had about each other’s book or magazines there’s plenty to talk about.
9 and ¾ . Pretend you’re Harry Potter
At King’s Cross station, you can imagine you’re everyone’s favourite boy wizard about to board the Hogwarts Express at Platform 9 and ¾ - it’s a solid brick wall though so don’t try to run through it.