We use cookies to track usage and preferences. You can view our cookies policy here.

Travelling to London by train

Making your way to the Capital might seem daunting. After all, isn’t the rail fare too expensive? And what if you can’t get a seat? Don’t worry. We’re here to help with our guide to travelling to London by train. We’ll tell you which the best trains are, how to find the cheapest fare and what to do once you get there.

Is travelling to London by train on a budget easy?

That’s a great question. After all, it can be a long way to travel for many people. Plus, if you’re travelling from within the South East, the fares at Peak times can be eyewatering. So, how do you get a better fare? You can start with our guide to travelling to London on a budget.

When you book with Railsmartr, we’ll show you all of your options, too. So, we’ll show you some slower (but cheaper) options that you might not have considered for travelling to and from London. Let’s take a look at an example for a journey between London and Edinburgh, two weeks ahead:

options for travelling from london to edinburgh with railsmartr

The cheapest option is actually to travel from Euston to Carlisle, then make a quick, either same-platform or cross-platform, connection for Edinburgh. It’s not much slower, and you’d save £17.50. That’s enough to buy yourself a decent picnic for the train, instead! We’ve done this for lots of different places. For example, we’ve written a comparison of all of the different ways to get from Sheffield to London.

Which is the best train for travelling to London?

That all rests on where you’re travelling from! But, on a lot of routes, you might have a choice. We’ve done some of the legwork for you, though. We’ve travelled on a lot of these trains ourselves so that we can tell you which we think is the best option for each trip.

For example, if you’re travelling from Birmingham to London, then you can choose from Avanti West Coast, Chiltern Railways or London Northwestern Railway. But which is best? How do you strike the balance between time, comfort and cost? Well, we took a trip to work out the best train from Birmingham to London.

london euston station

We’ve also been out and compared the best train from Edinburgh to London. After all, the new low-cost operator, Lumo, has brought some competition to this route. A little closer to the Capital, we’ve also compared the trains between Southend and London.

Is it worth travelling to London in First Class?

It depends on who you’re travelling with. You might not have an option for travelling to London in First Class on some shorter routes, and it certainly isn’t worth it in my cases. If you’re making a long-distance trip though, an upgrade is certainly an option.

For example, if you’re travelling from Scotland, then you can choose between Avanti West Coast or LNER if you’d like a First Class experience. But, which is better? We’ve done a comparison of the two to help you decide which is best for travelling to London in style.

Take a look at our dedicated section on First Class Travel. It’ll to help you to travel smarter when you fancy some of life’s little luxuries.

What happens when I get to London?

So, you’ve made it to London. What next? Do you need to take the Underground? Are you seeing the sights, connecting to another train, or even a plane? It’s a busy city with lots of rail and Underground lines criss-crossing it.

Don’t panic. We’ve got a handy selection of guides on what to do next when you need to cross London. We’ve covered everything from having the right ticket to knowing which station you need to head for.

Is there anything else I should know?

The final thing that we’d recommend is that you book your tickets with Railsmartr, if you’re travelling to London. We don’t charge any booking fees, refund fees or change fees. Yes, this means that if your ticket is refundable, we’ll refund the entire amount. Why pay more if you’ve changed your mind?