Frequently Asked Questions?

Most frequently asked questions

  • Can I use my Railcard for tickets for travel on the London Underground?
    A:

    With your Railcard you can get 1/3 off 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 £19.60).


  • 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.


  • Can I travel on discounted tickets if my Railcard expires before I complete my journey?
    A:

    No. You will not be able to travel with your discounted tickets if your Railcard has expired. Discounted tickets are only valid if you are using them with a valid Railcard. You will need to renew your Railcard before you begin and complete your journey.

    Click here for the step by step guide on how to renew your Railcard.

    If you have selected 'Digital' under ‘Choose the type of Railcard you would like’ section, your digital Family & Friends Railcard will be available to use straight away. A download code will be sent to your registered email address, along with instructions on how to download your digital Railcard. 


  • Family & Friends Railcard Terms & Conditions
    A:

    Please click on https://www.familyandfriends-railcard.co.uk/help/railcard-terms-conditions/ for important terms and conditions that you need to understand before you use your Railcard.

     


  • Will I have to pay the full fare if I forget to bring my Railcard when I travel?
    A:

    Yes. You must show your valid Family & Friends Railcard (digital or plastic) when you buy your ticket and travel on the train. Failure to present a valid Railcard will mean you have to pay a full fare, which is not refundable.


  • Can I use my Railcard in conjunction with Train Company special offers?
    A:

    Yes. You can use it with the 2FOR1 Days Out Guide promotions and most offers given by train companies. Please note that your Railcard may get you the full 1/3 discount on some Train Company special offers, but many offers include a smaller discount or no discount at all. It's best to ask at your local station for details of a specific offer or call National Rail Enquiries on 03457 48 49 50.

    Alternatively, you can visit www.nationalrail.co.uk.


  • Will I receive the Railcard discount on any chargeable items I take on the train with me?
    A:

    The Railcard discount does not cover charges on various articles or animals.

    For details about which items carry a charge, and details of the charges, please call National Rail Enquiries on 03457 48 49 50.


  • Can I use my Family & Friends Railcard at any time of day?
    A:

    No. Railcard discounts are available throughout Britain but they are not available on tickets for morning peak period services, for journeys wholly within London & South East Network Railcard area on Mondays to Fridays. (The exceptions to this discounted fare rule are when you travel at weekends and on Public Holidays).
     
    The times of morning off-peak services do vary by route and are normally related to the availability of Off-Peak Day tickets. It's best to check with ticket office staff before buying your tickets.


  • Can I use my Railcard to buy my ticket on the train rather than at a station?
    A:

    Only if there is no ticket office, or the ticket office is closed and there is no ticket machine available to buy your discounted ticket at the station at which you began your journey. If this is the case, you can buy your discounted ticket from ontrain staff.

    Otherwise, if ticket facilities were available at the station you could be charged the full price Standard Single fare.


  • Can I use my Railcard to buy tickets for other people?
    A:

    Yes. As long as either you (as the main Railcard holder) or the second named Railcard holder is travelling with a child, up to a total of four adults and four children travelling together can get discounts.

    Discounted price tickets purchased by a Family & Friends Railcard holder should be issued for travel for the same origin and destination and should normally be of the same ticket type (example all Off-Peak Returns). 

     


  • Can I reserve my seat if booking a ticket in advance?
    A:

    Yes, providing that there are reservations available on the service on which you are travelling. Many train companies will allow you to reserve a seat free of charge on longer distance journeys.

    Please check with the local ticket office staff before buying tickets.


  • Can I use my Railcard to save on more than just train travel?
    A:

    Yes. Please visit the ‘Offers & Competitions’ page for more details.


  • Can I use my Railcard on Sleeper Trains?
    A:

    Travelling on a Sleeper Train usually requires two payments: one for the rail ticket and one for the berth. The Railcard will give you a discount on the rail ticket element, but not on the berth fee. From time to time, the different Train Companies providing sleeper services may advertise special offers for Railcard holders.


  • Which train companies give Railcard discounts?
    A:

    You can use your Railcard on all franchised train operating companies that provide services within England, Scotland and Wales.

    Railcards do not give discounts on Eurostar services, Charter services, and Heritage Railways unless state otherwise.


  • Can I use the Railcard in Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland?
    A:

    Railcards can be used for rail discounts in the area known as Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales). They cannot be used for rail travel in either in Northern Ireland nor the Republic of Ireland.

    If you live in the Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland you can buy a Railcard to use for travelling in Scotland, Wales or England. For more information on concessionary rail travel schemes in Northern Ireland please see www.translink.co.uk or the Republic of Ireland please see  www.irishrail.ie.


  • Can I get a discount on Season tickets and period Travelcards with a Railcard?
    A: No, we’re sorry but the Railcard gives no discount on these types of ticket.

  • Can I laminate the paper Railcard I have bought from a station to protect it?
    A:

    No. Please do not laminate your Railcard. In most instances the heat of a laminating machine will turn the surface of your Railcard black, damaging it and making it illegible. If this happens you will need to buy a replacement Railcard (for a fee of £10 if you have had no previous replacements).

    Laminated Railcards cannot be accepted by rail staff as the lamination makes it difficult to validate that the Railcard has not been tampered with.

    To protect your Railcard please keep it in a plastic ticket wallet which is available for free from any staffed station.




Can't find an answer? 

If the answer to your question is not in the above or you are having problems purchasing your Railcard, you can contact us

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. To find their contact details see the list of Train Operating Companies