A train operator has launched an app aimed at providing instant access to the lowest rail fares.
State-run LNER’s new “Deal Finder” guides users to the dates with the cheapest tickets along the 956-mile route network linking London, Yorkshire, northeast England and Scotland.
Prospective travellers are offered a range of tickets, from £4 one-way between Newcastle and Durham to £53 between Glasgow Central and London King’s Cross.
Destinations in the Highlands and along the east coast of Scotland appear to be in a “sweet spot”, with Aviemore and Aberdeen on offer at £43 from London – a distance of over 500 miles.
Railcard discounts apply to the tickets, reducing the cost of those Anglo-Scottish journeys to just £28. But the lowest fares are on limited dates: from London to Aberdeen there is availability on four midweek days in the first half of March, while to Aviemore the only date is Wednesday 15 March.
The rail app emulates the “best fare finder” offered by budget airlines such as easyJet, as well as some rail ticket retailers, but is also designed to inspire travel.
Mark Smith, the international rail expert who runs the Seat61.com website, said: “This new LNER system is different. It doesn’t presuppose any destination, but shows you places worth visiting from your chosen start location within your budget.
“I don’t know of any other such system elsewhere – it certainly sounds an interesting way for people to look at affordable days out and short breaks.”
Danny Gonzalez, chief digital and innovation officer at LNER, said: “We are proud to be continuing to welcome more customers on board compared with pre-pandemic times and we hope our new Deal Finder on the LNER app will inspire even more people to explore our East Coast route.”
The app is free to download, and anyone signing up for the train operator’s “Perks” frequent-traveller scheme gets a £5 credit – enough for a trans-Yorkshire journey between Doncaster and Wakefield or along the shoulder of Scotland from Edinburgh to Dunbar.
LNER services will be drastically reduced during the next train drivers’ strikes on 1 and 3 February.
Departing soon: The Independent’s pick of the prices
- £4: Leeds to Harrogate
- £9: York to Durham
- £12: Peterborough to Hull
- £13: Edinburgh to Inverness, Newcastle to Glasgow, Peterborough to Keighley
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