It’s no secret that train fares are really expensive in the UK. In fact, for students travelling back and forth between uni and home, or for those wanting to visit friends in other cities, train fares can use up a huge chunk of that precious student loan. However, don’t stress, you can save loads of money by applying for a Student Rail Card. So, if you don’t want to spend half of your year on National Express coaches then read on. We’re here to discuss how to get a student rail card and some of the benefits of doing so.
Are you eligible for a student railcard?
There are a few different types of railcards available in the UK. Most students will be interested in the 16-25 year old one. In order to be eligible for this, you will need to be in between the age of 16 and 25 and will need a valid credit or debit card, a valid UK driving license or international passport.
Railcards for mature students
Alternatively, if you are a mature student then you are eligible for a one year railcard. To apply for this you will need to be attending a recognised college or university for over 15 hours a week and for at least 20 weeks in the year. Distance learning course do not apply. You’ll also need a NUS card or college/ uni photo card as proof of your studies.
How much is a student rail card?
Although railcards cost an initial fee, the money they can save you in the long run is huge!
In fact, National Rail say that people with a 16-25 Railcard save an average of £159 a year on travel. So, what’s the breakdown?
Well, applying for a 16-25 railcard costs just £30 and will get you 1/3 off of most train tickets. Therefore, it’s worth considering even if you only travel via train once a month as the card pretty much pays for itself after three or four trips. Additionally, you can also purchase a three year railcard for just £70.
How to get student rail card
The easiest way to apply for a student rail card is online here.
You can opt for a digital card that is downloaded to your phone or a plastic one sent by post. The process if really easy and you’ll just need to put in a few personal details and wait for you card to be sent via post (if not using the digital one.)
Don’t forget that you’ll need to bring your railcard with you at all times when you travel as inspectors will ask to see proof of this alongside your ticket.