Discount Railcards

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Discount Railcards

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Review of "Discount Railcards"

published 26/09/2006 | grapesoda
Member since : 25/08/2006
Reviews : 24
Members who trust : 4
About me :
Pro A third off rail fares
Cons Too many restrictions
very helpful
Frequency of trains
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How extensive is their Rail Network?

"A Third off?!"

Seeing as I work for a certain train company I thought it would be a nice idea for me to tell you lovely people about our discounts! How nice am I? Don't mention it! There are a few different rail cards so you're bound to find one that suits you and you can save a lot of money with these handy rail cards too!


This is probably the most common one. I see this one being used more than any other! You need to be 16-26 or under to have this rail card or a full-time student over 26. You can buy rail cards online as well as from some booking offices, like my lovely one! When coming along make sure you have two passport sized photographs so we can do you a photo card and something with proof of age. If you're a student over 26 we need a letter from your college or university to prove you're a full time student. Oh, you'll also need a crisp twenty pound note too for the rail card! Don't worry though! That twenty pounds might save you a lot of money and your rail card is valid for a whole year! The Young Persons card can save you up to a third on rail fares though of course there are restrictions! 

OK so with the Young Persons you can't really get much of a discount before 10am. The minimum fare on a ticket before 10am is 16.00 and all though standard day returns are dear; they aren't that dear so it doesn't really come in handy at that time of day. The most expensive standard day return I sell is 13.30 which is from way out in Essex back into central London so you wouldn't save money on that. However if you do usually pay 20 pounds a day (!) for a standard day return then, yay, you saved four pounds! The min fare before 10am is also 8 pounds though, again, we only have two singles that are 60 p over 8 pounds so it's not even worth mentioning really. I can't imagine you'll find many singles over 8 pounds to be honest on the lines mentioned below. If you travel a lot before 10am we usually don't recommend this rail card as you can't use it much before then, especially on our line. In August and July though there are no restrictions with the young person's rail card.

So what are the savings? Well it's a third off with the YP like the other rail cards really. A good saving I notice a lot is a single to one of our most popular stations. Its 8.20 single without the rail card and it goes down to 5.40 with the card. Also a journey to a popular shopping centre would cost 5.30 without the rail card and 3.50 with! So you can make some really good savings with a twenty pound investment.

You can't use the YP on Euro star, first class tickets and Apex tickets. They don't offer it on an Apex simply as they are cheap enough as it is. : P

You can use the YP on travel cards for the Underground but they have restrictions too. The minimum fare before 10am is 8 pounds and after it's 4.80. You also have to purchase an all zones travel card too.

Keep the receipt part we give you with your Young Persons. If you use it you can get a duplicate with an admin fee of 5 pounds. The Young Persons card is also non refundable.


A family rail card can save money on just the one card for up to 4 adults and 4 children. Again it's only 20 pounds for the year this one is particularly handy if you have a big family as rail fares can be quite expensive once there is a big group of you! You can save up to a third on adult fares on this rail card and up to 60% for the children. It sounds silly but honestly, I do get people asking… YOU CAN'T USE this card on your own or if you're a group of adults! That's why it's a FAMILY rail card! There must be at least one adult and one child aged 5 - 15 years of age for this rail card to be valid. Again you can't use this rail card before 10 am Monday - Friday and there are minimum fares that apply to travel cards with this rail card too, pretty much the same as the Young Person's Rail card. The minimum fare for a child is also 1.00 so if a ticket with the discount comes to less than 1 pound, it will set to 1 pound automatically anyway. The main card holder must also be at least 16 years old. Family rail cards are non refundable and can be replaced if lost or stolen if the receipt is kept with a 5 pound admin charge.


You must be at least 60 years old to purchase this card. Again it is twenty pounds for the year with this rail card. You can save a third on fares with the senior rail card and it has restrictions like the other rail cards. It cannot be used before 10am and has the same minimum fare rules as the YP and the Family rail card. This one is particularly good at saving money as well if the customer has a freedom pass. These freedom passes are given to citizens of London and take them for free on the Underground. So for our train company a cheap day return to Southend would be 10.90 and if our customer, senior customer had a freedom pass and a senior rail card it would take them from Upminster - Southend and with the Senior rail card it would only be 5.40 return! So it's a pretty good deal for the older customer.


This card has a lot of restrictions. The first one being it is only valid for the South East of England. I must say this rail card is only really good if you take a lot of long distance journeys, other than that, it's not brilliant for cheap day returns or standard day singles. It can't be used Monday - Fridays before 10 am and the minimum fare is 10 pounds all the time apart from weekends. It can also be purchased for twenty pounds for the year and can save up to a third on some rail journeys. Children are also subject to a minimum fare of 1 pound.

If you have an annual season ticket you can also purchase this network rail card for a one pound.

(There is also a disabled rail card. It has a lot more restrictions and eligibility policies to this rail card but it's just as good as the others visit for more information on the rail card and if it might be the one for you)


• You can purchase your rail cards from most national rail ticket offices. You can't purchase them from any London Underground station. You can also apply online at
• All rail cards are 20 pounds per yet, apart from the Disabled Rail card which is 18 pounds per year as of 6th of September 2006.
• All rail cards cannot be used before 10am Monday - Friday peak time or are subject to minimum fares.
• Keep your receipt. If you ever lose of your rail card gets stolen you will need it for a duplicate. There is also a 5 pounds admin fee for issuing a duplicate.
• You cannot use your rail card on season tickets (i.e. weekly, monthly or annual tickets)
• You cannot use your discount card at any London Underground station
• If you forget to bring your rail card with you have to pay full fare. You are not entitled to apply for this money back.
• If a ticket office and machine is broken at a station and you need to get a ticket with your discount card put some small change in the permit to travel machines at stations and purchase your ticket on the train or at the other end.
• Your rail card (excluding Family) is not valid without a photo card.
• No refunds on rail cards.
• You can't use your rail card to purchase discounted tickets for others. Unless it's the family rail card and your with others.

The list of companies accepting rail cards.

Central Trains
Midland Mainline
Northen Rail
First Great Western
South West Trains
Virgin Trains
Chiltren Railways
Arriva Trains Wales
West Anglia Great Northen
Hull Trains
Scot Rail

My personal opinion

I think it is well worth it to be honest. I couldn't give a damn about flogging them, I don't get any commission! I'm just being honest! If I didn't get a hefty priv discount already and a free pass to some lines I would definitely buy the Young Persons. I'm a big fan of shopping and you can save a lot of money going somewhere like Lakeside in Thurrock or a day trip to Southend. It's good too it works on Virgin trains. I've seen a couple of people save a good sum of money to trips to Manchester. The senior rail card is brilliant for the older ones too. Combined with a freedom pass they just pay peanuts to be honest. It can save you so much money. So OK you can't use them before 10am, but still it'll save you plenty of money when you're doing the odd trip of too. Rail fares are so expensive now and a third off is definitely worth that twenty quid for the year!

What you waiting for then?!

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Comments on this review

  • shazzaspannered published 27/04/2007
    We have a network railcard and it must save us so much money over the year as we quite regularly travel by train to London x
  • swissflyer published 14/10/2006
    A really very helpful report for me as a Swiss :o)
  • BadCompany77 published 14/10/2006
    Cracking wee review !
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Product Information : Discount Railcards

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Listed on Ciao since: 18/05/2002