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What’s the best Hull to London train?

Looking to get from Hull to London? You have two choices. You can either take Hull Trains, which operates direct trains to and from the capital, or you can travel with LNER. They run direct once a day, and at other times, you’ll need to use Northern and change at Doncaster. Let’s take a look at how much the trains cost and what they’re like so we can work out the best Hull to London train.

What are my Hull to London train options?

The most frequent direct train option is with Hull Trains. They run seven return trips to London on weekdays, and six on weekends. The trains stop at Brough, Howden, Selby, Doncaster, Retford and Grantham on the way, and a typical journey takes around 2h30m. On Sunday evenings, some trains also stop at Stevenage.

Alternatively, you can travel with LNER. Their direct train runs on Mondays to Saturdays and leaves at around 07:00. The return trip leaves London at 17:18 Monday to Saturday and 17:22 on Sundays. It takes around 2h45m. For the rest of the day, if you want to use LNER, you’ll need to take a Northern train to Doncaster first.

What are the trains like?

Both companies run a very similar type of Hull to London train. The only difference is that Hull Trains call their trains ‘Paragon‘, while LNER’s are called ‘Azuma‘. Here’s what a Paragon train looks like:

hull trains service at london king's cross

Both of the trains also have a very similar layout inside. Seating is in a 2+2 layout in Standard Class, and 2+1 in First Class. The only difference is that you’ll find both three-point plug sockets and USB ports under the seats on Hull Trains in Standard Class, while LNER only has plug sockets in Standard Class. Here’s what the inside of an LNER train looks like:

interior of an azuma hull to london train in standard class, showing 2+2 seating

If you want some food and drink on board, then LNER offers a Let’s Eat at Your Seat service, where you can scan the QR code (you can see them on the backs of the seats in the picture above) and order food and drink to be brought to you.

Hull Trains doesn’t offer any catering in Standard Class, so bring a picnic!

Who offers the best Hull to London train fare?

Now this is the main thing we want to know. Which is the best Hull to London train based on price? Let’s first compare the direct trains a month in advance of travel:

hull to london trains on railsmartr in the morning peak

So, if you want to travel first thing in the morning, it would be cheaper to take LNER. This is likely because the Hull Trains service leaves earlier and gets into London earlier. Let’s see what it’s like when we travel at a less busy time:

railsmartr website showing hull to london train fares in the afternoon on a weekday

As you can see, both companies are a lot cheaper if you travel later. LNER is still the cheapest option for some journeys, but the price can vary. Hull Trains comes somewhere in the middle. So, the best-priced train can depend on when you’d prefer to travel.

What is First Class like?

Let’s have a look over the best Hull to London train for First Class experience. The carriages themselves are almost identical, with both companies offering 2+1 layout reclining seats, USB ports and three-pin sockets at every seat, and more space in general.

The only thing separating the two companies is going to be the sort of food and drink that they give you. On Hull Trains, you can expect a selection of hot and cold sandwiches throughout the day. In the morning, this will mean a bacon or vegan sausage roll.

LNER serves the Dish menu on their direct Hull to London train services in the mornings. This means that you have a couple of hot breakfast options. In the evening, they serve from the Dine menu on the direct train on weekdays, which is the most substantial menu with multiple hot options. On Saturdays, you’ll get the Deli menu (cold food only) and it’s the Dish menu on Sundays.

So, what’s the best Hull to London train?

If you can get it at the right price, then you might find that LNER is the best option, particularly on the direct trains. However, in terms of journey time, Hull Trains are definitely the best one to choose. Their prices might not always be the lowest, but they’re consistently fairly cheap outside of peak travel times.

In a nutshell – it depends! Make sure you take a look at all of your options and decide what you’d prefer. If you want the ‘full works’, such as food and drink, then you might prefer LNER. For a direct no-frills service, Hull Trains is best.

Is there anything else I should know?

The final thing we’d recommend is using the Railsmartr website to book your Hull to London train journey. We’re completely independent, so we’re happy to ‘tell you like it is’ when it comes to rail fares. Not only that, but we’ll show you the slower, but cheaper options that some websites won’t.

Don’t forget that we don’t charge any fees, either. That includes if you change your mind and want to travel on a different day. If your ticket is refundable, we’ll refund it fee-free, too!

All information on this page is issued without liability and was correct at the time of writing (28/06/2023). All fares are for ONE adult without Railcard discount. Railsmartr is not responsible for any loss or disappointment incurred as a result of information provided.