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What are rail ticket restriction codes?

If you’re ever bought a rail ticket, particularly a flexible one, you might see that it has a restriction code. But what are rail ticket restriction codes and what do they mean for you? 

First of all, let’s take a look at where you can find rail ticket restriction codes when you buy one. In this example, we’ll look at a restriction code on an e-ticket: 

rail ticket restriction code eticket

The part that we’re interested in is highlighted in yellow. Under ‘Ticket Details’ you’ll find the restriction code for your ticket. It also includes a link to the National Rail website so you can take a look at what those restrictions are. In this case, the link is nre.co.uk/1l, as the restriction code is 1L. 

rail ticket restriction codes information

As you can see, this tells you everything that you might need to know about your ticket. It tells you where it’s valid to and from, when it’s valid and whether you can break your journey. 

Each ticket (where it has a restriction) has its own restriction code. Codes are usually given to the same types of ticket on the same route or in the same area with the same operator, rather than per ticket. 

So next time you’re travelling and you’re unsure of when you can use your ticket, just look out for the rail ticket restriction codes on the tickets you buy. 

Want to know more about Off-Peak travel and what that means? We’ve made a handy guide for you. It includes everything you need to know and how to make sure you buy the right ticket for your trip. 

When you buy a ticket with Railsmartr, we’ll always make sure you have the cheapest valid ticket for your trip. That means that there’s no need to worry about restriction codes or whether your ticket will be accepted!