Advance Tickets
Book ahead and save money with Advance tickets

Advance tickets are great value, and ideal for saving money on long journeys. They must be bought in advance of travel (details on Advance booking thresholds can be found on our Latest purchase time page) and are only valid on the date and train specified.

All Advance tickets are singles, but you can combine tickets to create your whole journey, including your return. Advance tickets are sold in limited numbers, subject to availability and on a first come, first served basis. You can usually buy an Advance ticket up to 12 weeks ahead of travel, and they are still available until the day of travel on many routes – sometimes up to 10 minutes before departure.

Half a million Advance train tickets for less than a tenner are released weekly!

Photo of a man and a woman hugging in front of a railway station​​​​​​​

​​​​​​​Discounts with Advance Tickets

  • 50% applies to all adult Advance fares for children aged 5 to 15 years old
  • 16-17 Saver gets 50% off adult Advance fares
  • Most national Railcards allow 1/3 off Standard Class Advance fares
  • If you have a 16-25, Senior, Two Together, HM Forces, Veterans, or Disabled Persons Railcard, you can also get 1/3 off First Class Advance fares

Find out more about Railcards at

Changing or Refunding Advance Tickets

If you need to change the day or time that you are travelling, you can amend your ticket right up to the time your journey is due to begin. You may be charged no more than £10 to change your ticket and you will also be charged for any difference in price between your ticket and the new ticket. For more information see our Buying Advance tickets and reserving seats page.

Advance tickets are non-refundable, unless your train is delayed or cancelled and you choose not to travel.

See the Advance ticket terms and conditions for full information at

Seat Reservations

Not all services offer seat reservations but the longer the journey the more likely you are to be able to book a seat. Reservations are allocated at the same time as you buy your tickets, and if a seat reservation is available, you will be asked then to set you your preference. Even if you don’t reserve a seat, all Advance tickets must still be used on the date and service specified on your ticket.

See our full terms and conditions for Advance tickets at ​​​​​​​

Advance tickets not right for you? Find out about different ticket types here:

  • ​​​​​​​Off-Peak - Buy any time, travel off-peak .
  • Anytime - Buy any time, travel any time.
  • Season - Unlimited travel between two stations for a specified period.
  • Rovers and Rangers - Unlimited travel within a specified area. There may be a few time restrictions on when you can travel.

Photo of four smiling women walking down steps at a railway station​​​​​​​

Book with Confidence

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​The rail industry have introduced an easement to the terms & conditions of Advance tickets sold by rail retailers, to help you travel with confidence if your travel plans change.

You can amend when you travel fee free up until 6pm the day before you travel.

Applies to Advance tickets purchased until 30 September 2022. Fare price difference may apply. Advance tickets purchased online can be exchanged for a voucher for future journey. See Terms & Conditions below for details.

Check with your ticket retailer to find out if they are participating in the Book with Confidence scheme.​​​​​​​

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Book with Confidence Terms & Conditions: Advance tickets can be exchanged to travel on the same journey but at a different time or date, paying any difference in fare but fee-free or surrendered back to the retailer for a rail travel voucher which can be used on any future journey or purchase within 12 months. Changes must be requested no later than 6pm (18:00) the day before you are due to travel. After this, Advance tickets can still be changed up to the departure of the first booked train for a fee of no more than £10 per ticket.

How much do Advance tickets cost?


Advance fares vary depending on the journey you are looking for but you can usually save money with an Advance ticket by booking ahead. Half a million tickets for less than £10 are released every week across the rail network. But remember; they are single tickets and there is limited availability. ​​​​​​​

How far in advance do I have to buy my ticket?


You can buy an Advance ticket for most journeys up to 12 weeks ahead of the day you plan to travel, and on some routes up to 10 minutes before departure! But as they are sold on a first come, first served basis, it pays to plan ahead.

Can I change or get a refund on my Advance ticket?


Advance tickets are changeable but there may be a fee to pay, as well as any difference in fare between the ticket you have, and the ticket you need.

Advance tickets are non-refundable unless your train is delayed or cancelled and you choose not to travel. ​​​​​​​

Can I use my Railcard to get a discount on an Advance ticket?


Yes, most Railcards offer a discount when you buy an Advance ticket.

Find out more about our Railcards at  ​​​​​​​



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Last updated:   08 September 2022