Buying Advance tickets and reserving seats

When can I buy Advance Tickets and make seat reservations?

Below is a summary of the farthest travel dates in the future where it is possible to reserve seats today for those Train Companies offering seat reservations and Advance tickets .

Advance tickets are generally not available earlier than 12 weeks before the date of travel. 

Once train times are confirmed, Advance tickets will begin to appear in our Journey Planner. You will be able to find full details of availability and choose to buy them from your preferred retailer.

Advance tickets are sold in limited numbers, and so subject to availability.

Information about buying tickets

Changes to train times

Sometimes, there can be changes to train times at weekends and bank holidays to allow essential engineering work to be carried out. Trains may be retimed or re-routed. Occasionally the journey may involve travelling on a bus service.  We have a dedicated area of our website which gives details about future engineering work.

Train Companies aim to provide information about changes to train times twelve weeks in advance.

Until the changes to the timetable are confirmed it is not always possible to buy Advance tickets or to make seat reservations on train services that may be affected by engineering work.

Advance ticket & reservation information last updated 18 May.


Arriva Trains Wales

 

Saturday service:

30 June

Sunday service:

1 July

Monday to Friday service:

29 June

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 19:00 day before travel for some early morning trains.

Other services up to 4 hours before departure point of origin.

Notes:

Ferry reservations to Ireland are open to 3 August.

Caledonian Sleeper

 
These can be booked 12 months in advance.

Chiltern Railways

 

Saturday service:

28 July

Sunday service:

29 July

Monday to Friday service:

27 July

Latest time of reservation:

Advance tickets are available up to 18:00 the day before travel.

Notes

Saturday - Closed 14/21/28 July on London to Oxford route.

Sunday - Closed 15/22/29 July on London to Oxford route.

Mon-Fri - Closed 9 to 20 July on London to Oxford route.

CrossCountry - East to West routes

 

Routes: 

Between Nottingham and Cardiff via Birmingham, Stansted Airport and Birmingham New Street via Leicester

Saturday service:

11 August

Sunday service:

12 August

Monday to Friday service:

10 August

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 21:00 the day before travel but some routes may close earlier.

Notes:

Birmingham to Cardiff are closed on 7 / 14 / 15 July

CrossCountry - North to South routes

 

Routes:

Between Scotland and South West, Newcastle and Southampton, Manchester and Bournemouth / Bristol

Saturday service:

11 August

Sunday service:

12 August

Monday to Friday service:

10 August

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 10 minutes before customers board the train when booked through all CrossCountry channels and at a select number of online retailers / travel agents.

Notes:

Birmingham to Bristol / South West are closed 7 / 8 / 14 / 15 July..

Birmingham to Southampton / Bournemouth are open except for 13 / 20 July. Also closed on 30 June and 1 July.

East Midlands Trains - Between Liverpool and Norwich

 

Saturday service:

11 August

Sunday service:

12 August

Monday to Friday service:

10 August

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 23:59 the day before travel.

Notes:

Please note that engineering work is taking place at Liverpool Lime Street from 2 June to 3 August, closing the station. Please travel to / from Liverpool South Parkway for direct journeys on the Liverpool - Norwich route.

East Midlands Trains - London route

 

Saturday service:
11 August

Sunday service:
12 August

Monday to Friday service:
10 August

Notes:

Closed Sunday 24 June, 8 and 15 July

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 23:59 the day before travel.

Grand Central

 

Saturday service:

30 June

Sunday service:

1 July

Monday to Friday service:

29 June

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 4 hours before departing origin point.

Great Western Railway

 

Saturday service:

21 July

Sunday service:

22 July

Monday to Friday service:

27 July

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 18:00 the day before. 

Notes:

Reservations are not open for the following dates:

London to West of England: 10,12-14 June, 9-12 July, 16-20 July and the 22 July.

London to South Wales: 16 June - 6 July.

London to Cotswolds: 17 / 24 June. 1 July, 7-20 July and 22 July.

Greater Anglia / Stansted Express

 

Saturday service:

4 August

Sunday service:

5 August

Monday to Friday service:

10 August

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 23:59 the day before travel. 

Notes:

Reservations are not open on the following routes / dates:

Cambridge route:  Closed 23 / 24 June, 7/8/14/15/21/22/28/29 July

Clacton  route: Closed 30 June and 1 July.

Norwich route: Closed 30 June and 1 July.

Hull Trains

 

Saturday service:

11 August

Sunday service:

5 August

Monday to Friday service:

10 August

Notes:

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 15:00 day before travel for early morning services.

Other services up to 4 hours before departing point of origin.

Northern

 

Saturday service:

30 June

Sunday service:

1 July

Monday to Friday service:

10 August

Latest time of reservation:

Advance tickets are available up to 23:59 the day before travel. 

Notes:

Northern do not offer seat reservations but have quota controlled advance purchase products. 

Closed Saturday / Sunday / mid-week on the following routes:

York - Leeds - Bradford - Huddersfield

Manchester - Stoke / Liverpool

Manchester - Sheffield

Manchester Airport - Manchester - Bolton - Preston

Manchester Airport / Manchester / Preston - Lancaster - Barrow / Windermere

Additional Sunday closures:

Leeds - Bradford - Hebden Bridge - Manchester

York - Leeds - Bradford - Hebden Bridge - Preston Blackpool North

Leeds - Wakefield Westgate - Sheffield

Manchester Airport - Manchester - Bolton - Preston

Manchester Airport - Manchester - Wigan - Preston - Blackpool North

Manchester Airport / Manchester / Preston - Lancaster - Barrow / Windermere

ScotRail

 

Saturday service:

4 August

Sunday service:

5 August

Monday to Friday service:

10 August

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 23:59 day before travel for some early morning trains.

Up to 2 hours before departing point of origin.

Southeastern

 

Saturday service:

16 June

Sunday service:

17 June

Monday to Friday service:

16 August

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 18:00 the day before.

Notes:

Southeastern do not offer a specific seat allocation but use quota controls for controlling Advance tickets.

Weekend services will only be opened once train times have been confirmed.

Southern

 

Saturday service:

26 May

Sunday service:

Closed

Monday to Friday service:

27 July

Latest time of reservation:

Advance tickets are available up to 18:00 the day before travel. 

Notes:

Weekend services will only be opened once train times have been confirmed.

Southern do not offer seat reservations but have quota controlled advance purchase products. Southern are currently closed on: 19 and 28 May. 

South Western Railway - Between London Waterloo and Weymouth

 

Saturday service:

4 August

Sunday service:

5 August 

Monday to Friday service:

3 August

Latest time of reservation:

Advance tickets are available up to 23:59 the day before travel. 

Notes:

South Western Railway do not offer seat reservations but have quota controlled advance purchase products.  

South Western Railway - West of England

 

Saturday service:

4 August

Sunday service:

5 August

Monday to Friday service:

3 August

Latest time of reservation:

Advance tickets are available up to 23:59 the day before travel.

Notes:

South Western Railway do not offer seat reservations but have quota controlled advance purchase products.  

South Western Railway - Portsmouth route, Isle of Wight

 

Saturday service:

4 August

Sunday service:

5 August

Monday to Friday service:

3 August

Latest time of reservation:

Advance tickets are available up to 23:59 the day before travel. 

Notes:

South Western Railway do not offer seat reservations but have quota controlled advance purchase products. 

TransPennine Express

 

Saturday service:

19 October

Sunday service:

20 October

Monday to Friday service:

26 October

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 23:59 the day before travel. 

Notes:

TransPennine Express are not open on the following dates:

Manchester Airport - Glasgow / Edinburgh: currently not available after the 26 August.

Liverpool Lime Street - Scarborough / Newcastle: 25 June - 27 July.

Manchester Airport - Middlesbrough / Newcastle: 16-17 June, 15 July.

Manchester - Leeds / Hull: 16-17 June.

Manchester Airport - Cleethorpes: 10, 16 17 June and 2, 9 September.

Virgin Trains

 

Saturday service:

16 June

Sunday service:

17 June

Monday to Friday service:

9 August

Latest time of reservation:

Trains departing point of origin before 11:00 up to 23:59 the day before travel.

Trains departing point of origin after 11:00 up to 4 hours before departing point of origin.

Notes:

Virgin Trains East Coast

 

Saturday service:

15 September

Sunday service:

9 September

Monday to Friday service:

2 November

Latest time of reservation:

Up to 23:59 day before travel for some early morning trains.

Up to 2 hours before departing point of origin.

Notes:

Tickets are available further in advance for most weekday journeys between London and the stations north of York, including Newcastle and Edinburgh. Subject to exceptions, such as Bank Holiday periods. 

West Midlands Trains

 

Saturday service:

4 August

Sunday service:

5 August

Monday to Friday service:

10 August

Latest time of reservation:

Information will be added when available.

Notes:

Closed on Sunday 22 July.

Special Events

Please note: NO trains will operate on Christmas Day. On Boxing Day some Train Operating Companies will run a very limited service.

The availability of Advance tickets could be affected by special events taking place along the route of the journey. Please check before travelling.