£99 First Class London to Edinburgh train tickets

I was down at the Business Travel Show at Earls Court on Tuesday, of which more to follow.

This is the best offer that caught my eye, but booking will be a little tricky.

East Coast Trains is running a promotion called ‘try before you fly’ to get business travellers to take the train instead of the plane.

They are offering £99 First Class return tickets between Kings Cross and Edinburgh Waverley.  However, tickets must be booked via a ‘rail appointed travel agent’.

East Coast

Apart from that, there are very few rules:

  • Must book by March 2nd, although you can travel as far ahead as you can book (ie 12 weeks beyond March 2nd)
  • Tickets must be bought by 6pm the day before travel
  • No railcard or child discounts
  • You must make a seat reservation for the outbound trip

Full details can be found here (EDIT: removed as now dead).

The core issue will be finding a travel agent who wants to sell you a rail ticket.  Amex holders may want to try the Amex travel service.  It is not clear if thetrainline.com etc or online travel agents like Expedia count as ‘rail appointed travel agents’.

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Comments

  1. Motellgamzol says:

    I need to travel to Newcastle. Would that work?

    • It depends if the station is gated. A ticket to Edinburgh would not let you in or out of the gates at Newcastle. But East Coast stations tend not to be gated.

      • Technically your ticket would not be valid..

        • Yes technically this would be an invalid ticket.

          I think Newcastle is gated but you could book a single ticket from Manors to Newcastle and one from Newcastle to Manors to collect at Kings Cross eaching costing £1.50 for the days you need to get through the gates at Newcastle and that should work.

          • I believe the gates are locked open during off-peak hours – but you should still follow Simon’s advice or risk being charged the full fare. For the return trip it’s more risky as it depends on the guard’s memory and where their shift changes. (On West Coast i.e. Virgin they change at Preston)

  2. Thomas Cook outlets used to be “rail appointed travel agents”, not sure if that’s still the case.

  3. onlysuites says:

    Newcastle is gated.

  4. Yes it does, but the £99 tickets should be available on trains where the only fares showing on the EC site are much higher. Although the rules are so vague it is not entirely clear what buckets are included!