Best time to book Christmas train travel and how to save £15 off with Trainline

The online train ticket booking company advises travellers hoping to use the rail network to get home in time for Christmas this year to book as early as possible to beat the festive rush – and last minute price hikes.

Trainline app tools like Price Prediction feature let travellers judge the best time to buy their tickets before they go up, and anyone booking now will save on average £58.71 – the equivalent of nearly 10 bottles of mulled wine.

However, there is also another handy money-saving offer travellers can use – £15 cashback bonus when spending £15 or more to cover some or all the cost of tickets bought via Trainline.

The deal from is available to all new members until Sunday 25 November, helping savvy shoppers nab extra savings in the run up to Christmas.

How to claim £15 off train tickets?

TopCashback will track your order within seven days and pay out your bonus within 30 days to your member’s account.

How do cashback sites work?

  • Instead of shopping directly through a store online, you access the retailer through a cashback website who will then get paid (by the brand) for ‘referring’ you to them.

  • Your transaction will continue as normal and your item will still arrive directly from the retailer, but the cashback website will pay you a cut of this payment as a reward for using its services, and as an incentive to encourage you to return.

  • This amount can be anything from 1% to £100 of your total spend – and you can use voucher codes to boost your saving that little bit further.

  • Your cashback will be sent back to you through your cashback account around 7-10 working days later.

  • However, with more complex services like travel and financial products, this period can be extended to six months.

How to get the most out of your festive train travel

The Trainline advance train travel booking window is now open, so we advise checking your route now to see how much you can save. Plus make the most of your festive travel by following these top tips from Trainline below.

1. Get alerts

Most train operating companies have opened their Christmas booking window. To be the first to know when your chosen journey are available use Trainline’s free Ticket Alert service. Simply input your desired journey and be notified by email of advanced ticket release dates and prices.

2. Check timings

The Trainline app Price Prediction tool estimates how long you’re likely to have left to buy tickets at the cheapest available price, so you don’t miss out on making the biggest savings.

3. Voice-activated updates

Trainline’s voice-activated train app, built for the Google Assistant, makes hands-free access to travel information as easy as (mince)pie. So, if you have your hands full after a mammoth shopping trip or simply don’t want to remove your gloves in the chilly weather, you can still access real-time train travel information. Simply ask the Google Assistant to “Talk to Trainline” or go straight to the information you need by saying, for example, “Ok Google, ask Trainline how my journey home is looking”.

4. Get some peace and quiet aboard

With people bound to be laden with gifts when travelling to visit family and friends over the holiday period, extra space is on everyone’s wish list. The BusyBot feature in the Trainline app reveals the quietest parts of the train so you can head for the empty seats and have the best chance of travelling in comfort. But remember: the best way to bag a seat reservation is to book an advance ticket – the sooner you book, the less likely you’ll need to sprint to find a seat.

5. Travel with friends for less

If you’re travelling with family or friends, check out GroupSave with the Trainline app, where groups of three to eight passengers who travel together on Off-Peak tickets may be eligible for a 34% discount. Invest in a National Railcard to reap the benefits of discounted train travel.

6. Save on (W)international travel

For those who fancy escaping the UK and travelling further afield to enjoy the winter season in mainland Europe, Trainline lets you book travel to over 40 European countries. So, whether it’s a family trip to a stunning Christmas market or a ski holiday with friends, you can be sure of finding great prices for your travel.

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7. Don’t get caught out on Christmas day

Have to travel on Christmas Day itself? There are no trains running but Trainline sells coach tickets too, so you needn’t be stuck without any travel options on the day.

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