Frequently Asked Questions?

Most frequently asked questions

  • Can I buy tickets at a discounted rate before my Railcard arrives?
    A:

    No. You must carry your Railcard with you on any journey where you have bought discounted tickets with the Railcard.

    Therefore, if you buy discounted Railcard tickets before you receive your Railcard, you do this at your own risk.


  • Can I travel on discounted tickets if my Railcard expires before I complete my journey?
    A:

    No. You will not be able to travel with your discounted tickets if your Network Railcard has expired. Discounted tickets are only valid if you are using them with a valid Railcard. You will need to renew your Network Railcard before you begin and complete your journey.

    Click here for a step by step guide on how to renew your Railcard.

    If you have selected 'Digital' under ‘Choose the type of Railcard you would like’ section, your digital Network Railcard will be available to use straight away. A download code will be sent to your registered email address, along with instructions on how to download your digital Network Railcard. 


  • Can I use my Railcard in conjunction with Train Company special offers?
    A:

    Yes. You can use it with the 2FOR1 Days Out Guide promotions and most offers given by train companies. Please note that your Railcard may get you the full 1/3 discount on some Train Company special offers, but many offers include a smaller discount or no discount at all. It's best to ask at your local station for details of a specific offer, or call National Rail Enquiries on 03457 48 49 50.

    Alternatively, you can visit www.nationalrail.co.uk.

     


  • Can I use my Network Railcard for tickets for travel on the London Underground?
    A:

    You cannot buy Network Railcard discounted tickets for journeys wholly on the London Underground and Docklands Light Railway. However discounted tickets bought for cross-London rail journeys which involve travel on the London Underground are permitted.


  • Can I use my Network Railcard to buy tickets for other people?
    A:

    You can purchase tickets for yourself and up to three adults travelling with you and they will also get up to 1/3 off their rail fare. Plus, you can take up to four children (aged 5 to 15 years) with you and save 60% on each child fare.

    All passengers taking advantage of the Network Railcard discount must travel with the Railcard holder throughout the entire journey. 


  • Can I use my Railcard to buy my ticket on the train rather than at a station?
    A:

    Only if there is no ticket office, or the ticket office is closed and there is no ticket machine available at the station at which you began your journey.  If this is the case, you can buy your discounted ticket from on-train staff or at your destination station.

    Otherwise, if ticket facilities were available at the station you could be charged the full price of Standard Single fare tickets.


  • Will I receive the Railcard discount on any chargeable items I take on the train with me?
    A:

    The Railcard discount does not cover charges on various articles or animals.

    For details about which items carry a charge, and details of the charges, please call National Rail Enquiries on 03457 48 49 50. 


  • Will I have to pay the full fare if I forget to bring my Network Railcard when I travel?
    A:

    Yes. You must show your valid Network Railcard (digital or plastic) when you buy your ticket and travel on the train. Failure to present a valid Railcard will mean you have to pay a full fare, which is not refundable.


  • Network Railcard Terms and Conditions
    A:

    Please click on https://www.network-railcard.co.uk/help/railcard-terms-conditions/ for important terms and conditions that you need to understand before you use your Railcard.


  • Can I use my Network Railcard at any time of day?
    A:

    You can buy Network Railcard discounted tickets for travel any time on weekends and public holidays or from 10:00am Monday to Friday. You may be able to start your journey a little earlier than 10:00am, see the time restriction easements section for details or check at your local station. 

    The 10:00am Monday to Friday time restriction applies to all types of tickets. 


  • Can I reserve my seat if booking a ticket in advance?
    A:

    Yes, providing that there are reservations available on the service on which you are travelling. Many train companies will allow you to reserve a seat free of charge on longer distance journeys.

    Please check with the train company you are travelling with or staff at the local ticket office before buying tickets.


  • Can I laminate the paper Railcard I have bought at the station to protect it?
    A:

    No. Please do not laminate your Railcard. In most instances the heat of laminating machines will turn the surface of your Railcard black, damaging it and making it illegible. If this happens you will need to buy a replacement Network Railcard (for a fee of £10 if you have had no previous replacements).

    Laminated Railcards cannot be accepted by rail staff as the lamination makes it difficult to validate that is has not been tampered with.

    To protect your Railcard please keep it in a plastic ticket wallet which is available for free from any staffed station ticket office.


  • Is the Network Railcard transferable?
    A:

    No. The named Network Railcard holder must be in possession of the Railcard at all times and is the only one able to use the Railcard to purchase discounted tickets.


  • I will not have a Railcard at the time of travelling, what should I do?
    A:

    Discounted tickets are only valid if you have your Network Railcard with you while travelling.  

    If you do not have your Network Railcard for your journey you will need to go to the ticket office to pay the difference between the Network Railcard discount fare and the full fare for the relevant ticket for the journey you are making.  


  • I want to travel with more people in my group, what should I do?
    A:

    In most cases you will be able to simply buy the additional tickets for travel on your chosen service with your Railcard online, via telesales or at a station. 

    Please note, the maximum group size travelling on discounted tickets with one Network Railcard holder is 4 adults (including the cardholder) and 4 children.  


  • I want to travel with less people in my group, what should I do?
    A:

    As long as the Network Railcard holder is with the party, the number of accompanying people can reduce without affecting the validity of the discounted tickets of those still travelling. Please be aware however that the accompanying individuals must make the complete trip with the cardholder - if they try to join the group at a station later in the journey or try to leave the group at a station before the destination of the group their ticket will not be valid.

    You may be able to apply for a refund on any unused tickets. Check the ticket terms and conditions on nationalrail.co.uk for further details.


  • Can the children or adults be replaced with other names as the group has changed?
    A:

    In all cases the Network Railcard holder will always need to be travelling otherwise none of the tickets will be valid. With regard to the accompanying passengers, rail tickets should only be used by the individuals for whom the Railcard holder bought them.


  • I lost the Railcard and am travelling now with the discounted tickets what should be done?
    A:

    If you do not have your Network Railcard in your possession when travelling, you are unable to use discounted tickets.

    Prior to boarding the train, you can go to the ticket office and pay the difference between the Railcard discounted fare and the full fare for the relevant ticket for your journey.

    Alternatively, you can purchase a new Network Railcard at the station or a digital Railcard online to take advantage of the discounted tickets you have already purchased.


  • Can I purchase First Class tickets with my Network Railcard?
    A:

     No. The Network Railcard only gives discounts on standard class tickets.


  • Where can I buy tickets with my Network Railcard?
    A:

    You can buy your Network Railcard discounted tickets online or at any National Rail station (ticket machine or ticket office) within the Network Railcard area.


  • Can I get a discount on period Travelcards or Season tickets with a Network Railcard?
    A:

    No. A Network Railcard will not give you discounts on Travelcards valid for more than one day or Season Tickets. 


  • Is there a minimum fare?
    A:

    The minimum discounted adult fare payable is £13 on all journeys Monday to Friday (does not apply at weekends or on Public Holidays).

    The minimum discounted child fare payable is £1 at all times

    The minimum fare payable for Anytime Day Travelcards is £19.60 at all times, when bought as part of your ticket to London from outside London Zones 1-9.

    Minimum fares apply to each individual travelling, not to the total value of tickets purchased.


  • Can I travel with a Network Railcard discounted ticket in the evening peak?
    A:

    Yes, subject to the terms and conditions of the ticket type you have purchased for travel. 

    You can use your Network Railcard to get discounts on tickets for travel from 10:00am Mondays to Fridays and at any time on Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays.

    Please note, the 10:00am Monday to Friday Network Railcard time restriction applies to all ticket types.
     


  • Why can’t the Network Railcard be used before 10:00am Monday to Friday?
    A:

    The Network Railcard is designed to promote off-peak leisure travel. This means that it encourages people to use trains outside of the busy commuting period which occurs before 10:00am Monday to Friday.


  • What tickets can I get a Network Railcard discount on?
    A:

    A Network Railcard gives discounts on the following tickets for travel in the Network Railcard area, subject to the appropriate minimum fare and the 10:00am Monday to Friday time restriction:

    • Anytime tickets
    • Off-Peak tickets
    • Anytime Day Travelcard (when bought as part of your ticket to London from outside London Zones 1-9)

    You can also save on inclusive train and bus 'PLUSBUS' tickets, and journeys to the Isle of Wight using Wightlink or Red Funnel (Ferries or ‘Red Jet’) services.

    Minimum fares and child supplement fares for journeys to the Isle of Wight also apply, so check for details at your local staffed station before planning your journey.

    Please note:

    • Some tickets may have conditions or restrictions that will apply, such as time restrictions for return travel from central London.
    • Not every ticket type is available for every journey that you may wish to make.
    • Minimum fares apply for all journeys Monday to Friday - see Minimum Fares section for details. 

  • What discounts do I get?
    A:

    A Network Railcard gives you up to 1/3 off most standard adult rail fares for travel in the Network Railcard area, subject to the minimum fare

    The added benefit is that up to three adults can travel with you and they will also get up to 1/3 off their rail fare. Plus, you can take up to four children (aged 5 to 15 years) with you and save 60% on each child fare.

    For details on what tickets you can and can't get Network Railcard discounts on, see the Discounts on tickets page. 

    Please note, Network Railcard discounts are not available on Oyster pay as you go.


  • What tickets can’t I get a discount on?
    A:

     A Network Railcard will not give you discounts on Advance tickets, Season Tickets, First Class tickets, Oyster pay as you go, Eurostar tickets, special excursions or charter trains, or in conjunction with some Train Company special offers. 

    Network Railcard discounts are not always available on bus links, especially those to airports e.g. Railair Links. You cannot buy discounted tickets for journeys wholly on the London Underground and Docklands Light Railway, or Travelcards valid for more than one day. 

    If you travel outside the Network Railcard area you can only use the Network Railcard to the boundary and will have to buy full price tickets for the journey outside the area. You must purchase these tickets before you cross the boundary and the train you are travelling on must stop at the boundary station.


  • Do all passengers travelling with Network Railcard discounted tickets have to complete the same journey as the Network Railcard holder?
    A:

    Yes. All passengers taking advantage of the Network Railcard discount must travel with the Railcard holder throughout the entire journey. 

    If members of the group are only travelling one way, then they can be added to the group in order to obtain a discount but must travel with the Railcard holder for the course of the one way journey. 




Can't find an answer? 

If the answer to your question is not in the above or you are having problems purchasing your Railcard, you can contact us

Train Companies

If you have any questions concerning rail ticket prices or journey planning National Rail Enquiries will be happy to help you.

If you have any comments about a specific rail journey please contact the train company that provides the service. To find their contact details see the list of Train Operating Companies