Travel to London for 16-year-old

Hi,

My daughter is 16 years old and planning to travel from Reading to London (Euston) to see her first gig, The options seem endlessly confusing to me (I haven't travelled on a train in donkey's years)! I don't know how much travel to London she may do in the future.

As I understand it, I can either buy a ticket online (Trainline quote £25.40 for an Off-Peak Day Travelcard on dates/times selected) or buy a 16-25 railcard for £30 and get the same ticket for £16.75 - a saving of £8.65. So if she makes 4 similar trips in the next year, the cost of the railcard becomes worthwhile.

The Railcard website says:
"Save on these types of tickets: <snip>
Oyster Off-Peak pay as you go Daily Price Cap and Off-Peak pay as you go single fares for journeys on National Rail, London Underground and Docklands Light Railway"

That leaves me even more confused. Does she need the 16+ Zip Oyster photocard (£20.00) as well if she wants to make extra journeys within London? And if that's what it means, how are these paid for? Do you load money onto the Oystercard and enter Railcard details or what? And anyway, I thought that the Oystercard already got you the discount. Does the Railcard get you extra? That can't be right, can it?

I am getting old. I used to just buy a cheap day return at the station! :rotfl:

Thanks so much for any help you are able to offer.

Dan
«1

Comments

  • Oyster is only for the tube and dlr for regular users/commuters, but you can just use contact less now it works out the cheapest ticket and debits your account at the end of each day. Although its even cheaper at 16 if you purchase a child ticket from a machine.

    The cheapest option for national rail longer journeys is normally trainline via quidco and choose a specific train rather than an open / off peak pass, you often get 1st class just as cheap, but for Reading it might not make any difference
    "It is not the critic who counts..." - Theodore Roosevelt
  • Voyager2002
    Voyager2002 Posts: 15,283 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    A warning regularly repeated on this board is to avoid Trainline: they charge fees for paying by card (hard to avoid when buying on-line) and for providing you with a ticket. By law, the companies who operate the trains must sell you the same tickets at exactly the same fares as those offered by Trainline, but without the fees. While Trainline offers a more helpful user interface that shows the lowest fares more clearly, their customer service tends to be extremely slow: the same kind of disadvantage as buying air tickets from an agent.
  • colcheslad
    colcheslad Posts: 240 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary
    The £16.75 is a Day Travelcard so includes all Tubes / buses etc without having to buy an Oyster or using contactless.

    Definitely worth getting the 16-25 railcard, it will pay for itself after a few uses.
  • Thanks everyone! Looks like the best option for me is to buy her a travelcard (just a pity the 16-17 year old card isn't available yet!) and then get a ticket from anyone but Trainline. Thanks very much for all the help and tips - much appreciated.
  • Mojo29
    Mojo29 Posts: 40 Forumite
    A couple of things; first of all never, ever, ever buy tickets from theTrainline. They charge more because of booking fees. At the moment, Topcashback are offering 1.05% Cashback on Transpennine Express, who charge no booking fees.

    For a journey like this, there is absolutely no point buying in Advance (unless you want Cashback); the fares online are exactly the same as those from the ticket machine or booking office at the station on the day of travel.

    A Railcard is definitely a good bet, as I'm sure your daughter will be making lots of journeys in the future. Have you considered a three-year one for £70, as this works out cheaper in the long run? You can buy them online via Topcashback with 5% cashback.

    Full fare (ie. no Rc'd) Reading to London Terminals off peak day return is £20.70. The Travelcard is, as you state £25.40. You don't say where this gig is but I'm assuming it'll be after the morning peak. Off-peak, Paddington to North Greenwich and back on the tube is £2.40 each way, so your daughter only has to make one more journey to benefit from the Travelcard. If one of the journeys starts between 16.00 and 19.00 then it's the Peak fare of £2.90 (but Off-peak day Travelcards are still valid in the evening peak).
  • dont_use_vistaprint
    dont_use_vistaprint Posts: 601 Forumite
    First Post Name Dropper First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    edited 9 January 2019 at 8:28PM
    Mojo29 wrote: »
    A couple of things; first of all never, ever, ever buy tickets from theTrainline. They charge more because of booking fees. At the moment, Topcashback are offering 1.05% Cashback on Transpennine Express, who charge no booking fees.

    For a journey like this, there is absolutely no point buying in Advance (unless you want Cashback); the fares online are exactly the same as those from the ticket machine or booking office at the station on the day of travel.

    A Railcard is definitely a good bet, as I'm sure your daughter will be making lots of journeys in the future. Have you considered a three-year one for £70, as this works out cheaper in the long run? You can buy them online via Topcashback with 5% cashback.

    Full fare (ie. no Rc'd) Reading to London Terminals off peak day return is £20.70. The Travelcard is, as you state £25.40. You don't say where this gig is but I'm assuming it'll be after the morning peak. Off-peak, Paddington to North Greenwich and back on the tube is £2.40 each way, so your daughter only has to make one more journey to benefit from the Travelcard. If one of the journeys starts between 16.00 and 19.00 then it's the Peak fare of £2.90 (but Off-peak day Travelcards are still valid in the evening peak).

    I price check and Trainline with Cashback via Quidco is consistently cheaper for first class to London than buying from the operators East Coast & EMT , Iv'e been doing this for the last 10+ years , although admit havent checkedc every single journey but when I have its been cheaper, Can you tell me how its cheaper another way, which web site to use etc ?
    "It is not the critic who counts..." - Theodore Roosevelt
  • Thanks. Not going to buy a three-year card as she is only 16 and they'll be bringing in the 16-17 year old Railcard in September - then she can get a year with 50% off travel rather than 33%!


    In the process of buying a 16-25 railcard now.
  • Thanks. Not going to buy a three-year card as she is only 16 and they'll be bringing in the 16-17 year old Railcard in September - then she can get a year with 50% off travel rather than 33%!


    In the process of buying a 16-25 railcard now.

    Make sure to carry it if a physical card still, as they wont accept proof of a railcard on a phone and getting a refund is tedius. Although I know they now offer an electronic version of the card finally !
    "It is not the critic who counts..." - Theodore Roosevelt
  • martindow
    martindow Posts: 10,218 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary
    From Reading off peak is valid for trains leaving after 9.30. In the evening there are limitations from about 16.00 to 19.00 and off peak tickets are only valid on certain trains - probably irrelevant as her gig is presumably in the evening.


    For Euston she is best getting a Circle or Hammersmith and City line train to Euston Square for a direct journey. For these trains go up the stairs half way along the platform at Paddington and follow the signs. Don't walk past the front of the train to the other tube stations or she will end up needing to change.
  • LadyDee
    LadyDee Posts: 4,293 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    I always find this site useful for travel planning OP.
    http://www.travelinesoutheast.org.uk/se/XSLT_TRIP_REQUEST2
This discussion has been closed.
Meet your Ambassadors

Categories

  • All Categories
  • 343.2K Banking & Borrowing
  • 250.1K Reduce Debt & Boost Income
  • 449.7K Spending & Discounts
  • 235.3K Work, Benefits & Business
  • 608K Mortgages, Homes & Bills
  • 173.1K Life & Family
  • 247.9K Travel & Transport
  • 1.5M Hobbies & Leisure
  • 15.9K Discuss & Feedback
  • 15.1K Coronavirus Support Boards