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Trains/Scotrail - Scotland

Are there any "tricks" in train ticket prices in Scotland? Is it cheaper to buy in advance or shortly before? Do children get to ride free? Is it easy to get train tickets? I had difficulty with the scotrail website.

Posted by
5669 posts

It is generally cheaper to buy in advance, but I believe that will restrict you to a specific train and time. Nigel will likely post with even better advice. I use the ScotRail site fairly often. I usually just put in the destinations and times and they give me options. Is there a specific problem that you've had with it? Pam

Posted by
484 posts

Hi Pam, I found a better way to work with the scotrail site. At first the website would say - a route. Then, a train route map all over scotland would pop-up and I couldn't figure it out. I found the section where destinations could be typed in. Much easier to work. Still I have a few questions. 1) Is it better to buy in advance and how far in advance? 2) Do you know anything about the bus service from Oban to Inverness? The train takes over 8 hours! 3) Is there a discount for buying multiple train rides? I will keep working on the Scotrail site. Any info. you have is a help though. Thanks!
4) How soon do you need to get to the train station before the train leaves? Security screenings?

Posted by
5669 posts

Yes. That's what I do. I type in the station I am leaving from with a time and the one I am going to. I then get some suggestions and can pick the one I want. There are buses, but I've not used them much. Google city link and you should be able to get to the right site. Or go to the VisitScotland site which should have bus links. Pam

Posted by
27709 posts

Original questions: Are there any "tricks" in train ticket prices in Scotland? No. Persistence pays. Look for specials, particularly when children are on school holidays. Look at the website and become familiar with it. Is it cheaper to buy in advance or shortly before? Tickets never get cheaper. If you can commit to a specific date time and train do that in advance and it will be cheapest. Do children get to ride free? If they are under 5. Not 5; under 5. 5-15 is half price for a "Child" ticket. Is it easy to get train tickets? Yes. New questions 1) Is it better to buy in advance and how far in advance? See above. If going for capacity controlled Advance tickets the sooner the better after they are released. Rovers and Rangers (not the football team) can be up to travel time - another advantage of them. 2) Do you know anything about the bus service from Oban to Inverness? The train takes over 8 hours! Sorry no. 3) Is there a discount for buying multiple train rides? Not generally, unless you have a season ticket (week at a time or more) or a Ranger or Rover. 4) How soon do you need to get to the train station before the train leaves? Seconds or minutes depending how much risk you like. Security screenings?
No

Posted by
484 posts

Thanks to all of you who responded. I think I will buy my tickets online before heading to Scotland. I also discovered the bus is the better way to travel between Oban and Inverness. It takes about 4 hours rather than 8 hours for a train!