Paying for the train

Carry on reading to find out about the numerous ways that you can purchase a train ticket in Northamptonshire...

Paying for the train photo


Where can I buy a train ticket?

People at Wellingborough Railway Station


At a train station...


From a staffed ticket office you can buy tickets for future journeys between any two places - it does not have to be to and from the station where you are buying the ticket from! 

The ticket counter staff will be able to help you choose the best ticket for your journey, advising on cost and any discounts you may be eligible for.

From a self-service ticket machines you can’t buy advanced tickets (e.g. you can only buy tickets on the day you travel) but you can buy tickets between any two places (i.e. your journey does not have to be to include the station where you are buying the ticket from).

Most self-service ticket machines only accept card payments.

It is worth noting that some rural and suburban stations may not have a staffed ticket office – or may only have a staffed ticket office during peak times – so it’s best to check before you travel.
Trisha the Northamptonshire Train Expert




On board a train...


You are able to buy a ticket for your travel on board some train services directly from a ticket inspector.

On board a Northamptonshire train
Please remember that it is not possible to buy a ticket on board some services, and you may be charged a penalty fare if you travel without a ticket! I highly advise making sure that you hold a valid ticket before you board a train (where possible) in order to avoid the above situation!
Trisha the Northamptonshire Train Expert
Northampton Train Station Sign




You can often get the cheapest train tickets by purchasing them online in advance of your journey.

Usually, the earlier you purchase your ticket online, the cheaper it is.

The majority of major rail operators’ websites will allow you to buy tickets for their services.


Don’t know who the operator is?

No worries, there are several online ticket specialists, such as Trainline and Redspottedhanky, which enable you to buy tickets for all train services, regardless of who the operator is.

Just type in where you’re travelling to and from in the search boxes and what date and time you would like to travel and these websites will find you a number of possible train journeys to meet your needs.

Buying from these websites enables you to compare different journey options across different train operators often resulting in you getting the best deal to suit your needs!

Freight Train
Did you know that you can buy your train tickets up to 12 weeks prior to your actual journey?
Trisha the Northamptonshire Train Expert
Lady on her phone


On the phone…


You can purchase advance train tickets over the phone by directly ringing the relevant train operating company.


Click here to access the phone numbers of all the different train operating companies operating in England, Wales and Scotland.

How can I pay for my train ticket?

There are a variety of different methods for how you can pay for your train tickets once you have decided how to buy them.

National Rail have detailed the different ways in which you can pay for your train tickets here.

How can I get the cheapest fares?

The best way to get cheap train tickets is to book them prior to travelling and book them for specific trains.


Book in advance of travelling...

Did you know that booking train tickets in advance could save you anything up to 80% on the usual cost of tickets bought on the day of travel!
Trisha the Northamptonshire Train Expert

It is worth noting that cheap train tickets are often available until 6pm the night before travel, so even if you've left it untill to the last minute, cheap train tickets, which can sometimes offer savings of up to 30% on the cost of tickets bought on the day, could still be yours!

Train platform live departure board



Travel Off-Peak...

Travelling off-peak (which often means travelling after 10am and outside 4-7pm on weekdays and incorporates travelling all weekend) is cheaper than travelling during peak times (i.e. when a lot of people are travelling to and from work).



Purchase a Railcard...

Available to purchase online and from staffed station ticket offices, Railcards enable you to get a third off the cost of all train tickets purchases.

Click here to find how you can get one.

Train worker standing on station's platform
Photo of a train going through a station


Other money saving tips...

  • have put together a guide for how to source the cheapest train tickets. Click here to find out more about these train travel hacks.
  • Days Out Guide offers 2for1 entry with rail tickets to hundreds of attractions across Britain. It’s worth a look!
  • Split Ticket have also created a Split Ticket Calculator which works out what two tickets you could buy for a train journey instead of buying one for the whole journey. This small travel hack can often save you a large amount of money!


What are the different types of train tickets that I can buy?



Advance - Buy in advance, sold in limited numbers and subject to availability. These tickets are only valid on the date/train specified.

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.

Train tickets