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How do I get from London to Coventry by Rail

Melbourne
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6 posts
20 reviews
68 helpful votes
How do I get from London to Coventry by Rail
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I've looked at websites regarding the rail system but am now totally confused.

I'll be arriving in London from Australia in mid May and need to make my way to Coventry for work. As I want to see some of the countryside I thought taking the train would be the best way.

However I'm totally bamboozled as to how the rail system works over there.

I'll be making my way up there on a Monday probably mid afternoon. What's the best time the travel and roughly how much will it cost

Thanking everyone in advance

Jody

UK
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49,560 posts
82 reviews
193 helpful votes
1. Re: How do I get from London to Coventry by Rail
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<<However I'm totally bamboozled as to how the rail system works over there..>

Possibly missing exactly what you mean by that, it works the same way as anywhere else, get on train at departure station, get off at arrival station :-)

You can look up the times and prices on http://ojp.nationalrail.co.uk/en/s/planjourney/query which will also give links to where you can buy - the confusing thing about our train system is the many and varied places you can buy from, but essentially it doesn't matter. eastcoast and thetrainline are two common ones which seem to take non UK credit cards.

You can arrange to collect the tickets from a machine at a station (usually your departure station but they are all linked, any station with the machines will do). The cheapest tickets are usually for a particular train, eg "the train leaving at 330pm" - miss that one and you'll have to buy another ticket. After that the price depends if you can travel at any time, or off-peak (eg not contending with commuters)

Edited: 12 years ago
Bingley, United...
Destination Expert
for Edinburgh
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2. Re: How do I get from London to Coventry by Rail
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Unless something has changed thetrainline doesn't accept foreign CCs - in any case they charge for bookings and CC use which http://eastcoast.co.uk doesn't.

As for confusion - you find a train, pay for it and get on it. For somewhere like Coventry it's best to book several weeks in advance of travel once the cheap tickets become available as the cheapest tickets on that route are £5 whilst buying on the day it's £40

UK
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49,560 posts
82 reviews
193 helpful votes
3. Re: How do I get from London to Coventry by Rail
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<<Unless something has changed thetrainline doesn't accept foreign CCs >>

I think something has changed, pretty sure a canadian reported using it recently after issues with one of the other usual suspects for booking.

But yes if eastcoast doesn't charge ,might as well use that.

Aberdeen, Scotland
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1,914 posts
4. Re: How do I get from London to Coventry by Rail
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An alternative rail ticketing site which doesn't charge booking fees and accept overseas payment cards is First Scotrail: http://www.scotrail.co.uk/buytickets/index.html

Pre-booked tickets can be collected from ticket machines located at hundreds of UK train stations. You don't have to collect tickets from the station nominated when you make the booking - system is fully linked and any station with a ticket machine will suffice.

London
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14,996 posts
96 reviews
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5. Re: How do I get from London to Coventry by Rail
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You are right to be confused. Some of our regular contributors, who are used the UK system, forget that the UK rail ticket pricing system is one of the most complicated pricing systems of any rail network in the world.

The direct train route to Coventry departs from Euston station.

There are two train operators on this route.

(1) Virgin Trains - they operate long distance services. You can get a very cheap (but totally non flexible fare) if you book ahead. A "walk up" (buy on the day) ticket will be about £37 outside the peak times. Average journey time just over an hour.

(2) London Midland - their service is aimed at commuters, they tend to stop at more stations along the way, so their services take longer. However, their tickets can be cheaper, especially if you intend to buy your ticket on the day. Expect to pay £17 off peak. Average journey time more like two hours - all because it stops at so many more intermediate stations.

Note that if you buy the cheaper London Midland ticket, you must use on of their trains, you can't use that ticket on the faster Virgin service.

When you are searching the ticket engines on the web, you may need to tick and untick various boxes. These sites always default to the fastest services, and persuading them to offer prices for the slower LondonMidland trains can be a bit of a struggle.

6. Re: How do I get from London to Coventry by Rail

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