Frequently Asked Questions?

Most frequently asked questions

  • Can I buy a Railcard at a rail station?
    A: Yes. You can buy a 1-year Railcard over the counter at all staffed National Rail stations.

  • Can I use my Railcard for tickets for travel on the London Underground?
    A: With your Railcard you can get 1/3 off a London Zones 1-6 Off-Peak Day Travelcard (subject to a minimum fare which is currently £8.00) and an Anytime Day Travelcard when bought as part of your journey to London from outside London Zones 1-9 (subject to a minimum fare which is currently £17.20).

  • Am I eligible to use a Family & Friends Railcard?
    A: Any adult can buy a Family & Friends Railcard. To use it, at least one of the group travelling must be named on the Railcard and there must also be at least one child travelling on a child rate ticket. The named Railcard holder must travel for the entire journey with any passengers who have been bought discounted tickets.

  • Can I buy tickets at a discounted rate before my Railcard arrives?
    A: No. You must carry your Railcard with you on any journey where you have bought discounted tickets with the Railcard. Therefore, if you buy discounted Railcard tickets before you receive your Railcard, you do this at your own risk.

  • How long do I have to wait for my Railcard to arrive?

    If you are buying your Railcard online we will despatch it within one working day, and send it free by First Class post. Please allow FIVE working days for your Railcard to arrive.

    You have the option of paying £6.50 for our Special Delivery service. Providing you have placed your order before 1600hrs this will guarantee that your Railcard is delivered within two days (Monday to Thursday) or three days (Friday to Sunday).

    You will not be able to collect your Railcard from a rail station. We add an extra week’s validity to your Railcard to allow for delivery time.

    You cannot travel on discounted tickets until you have received your Railcard. You cannot use your printed out confirmation of sale to get discount. The Railcard is the only proof of entitlement to discount that rail staff are able to accept.

  • How do I purchase or renew my Railcard online?
    A: Simply select "Buy Family & Friends Railcard now" and follow the onscreen instructions.
    Once your online payment has been successful you will receive an email confirmation and acknowledgement of your application number (this confirmation cannot be used to buy discounted tickets).

    Your new Railcard will be despatched within one working day by First Class post. Please allow five working days for delivery. You will have the option of paying for Special Delivery which will guarantee that your Railcard is delivered by the following morning providing that your order is made before 1600hrs on the date of purchase. We’re sorry, but your Railcard cannot be collected from a rail station. You will not be able to travel on discounted tickets until you have your Railcard – you cannot use the printed confirmation of sale.

  • Family & Friends Railcard Terms & Conditions

    There are important terms and conditions that you need to understand before you use your Railcard. Please click on the link to the Family & Friends Railcard terms and conditions to read these:

    Family & Friends Railcard - terms and conditions


  • What do I do if my Railcard is lost or damaged?
    A: If you bought your Railcard online, you will need to get a replacement online. You can only apply for a replacement Railcard seven or more days after the date of original purchase.
    You will have to pay a £10 administration fee if your Railcard was lost. 
    To apply for a replacement Railcard, please login here and follow the instructions on screen.
    If you bought it elsewhere, provided you can produce the completed "Receipt" portion of your original application form, then you can apply for your lost or damaged Railcard to be replaced at any staffed station ticket office. You will have to pay a £10 administration fee.
    Until you have your replacement Railcard, we’re sorry but you will have to pay the full fare. The lost discount is not refundable.

  • How can I renew my 1-year Railcard up to a 3-year Railcard?

    Log into your account as an Existing User and chose to renew your expiring 1-year Railcard.

    Once you have completed this you will be shown a Review screen. Click on the Edit button in “2. Railcard Details and Promotional Codes” and change the type to a 3-year Railcard.

  • I have a promotion code to use towards the cost of my Railcard – it is not working. What can I do?

    Please check that you have read each character of the code correctly. We do try to use codes that are easy to read, but occasionally applicants might confuse,

    • the letter “I” with the number “1”
    • the letter “O” with the number “0”(zero)
    • the letter “S” with the number “5”.

    If any of these characters appear in your code please try their alternatives. If this does not work please call us on 0345 3000 250 and we will be able to check the status of the code you have.

Can't find an answer? Get in touch

If you are having problems purchasing your Railcard, or if you have comments about the Railcard service, call or email us. You can also write using the postal address.

Train Companies

If you have any questions concerning rail ticket prices or journey planning National Rail Enquiries will be happy to help you.

If you have any comments about a specific rail journey please contact the train company that provides the service. You can find their contact details by clicking on this link Train company list
0345 3000 250 (07:00hrs to 22:00hrs)
National Railcards
PO BOX 6616
DD11 9AR


Buy online in a few easy steps

Create an account
Add your details
Add a second
named Cardholder
Review and secure payment

Existing customer ? Renew here