New data from the UK rail industry reports that ticket sales to seaside destinations for the bank holiday weekend have surpassed pre-pandemic levels.
Ticket sales have more than doubled compared to last year’s August bank holiday (up by 117%) and have even surpassed the same pre-pandemic weekend in 2019 (up by 17%).
This marks the first week where leisure travel has surpassed pre-pandemic levels in many locations across the country.
According to research by WPI Economics, carried out on behalf of the Rail Delivery Group, train passengers travelling to seaside destinations for leisure spend on average £116 per trip. This adds to £46bn of spending associated with all leisure travel by rail in Great Britain.
“With the convenience, ease and sustainability of domestic rail travel, this boost will have a positive impact on our coastal regions, boosting economic growth and spreading the benefits of tourism across Britain.”
Leisure travel nationally has risen to 97% of pre-pandemic levels since ‘Freedom Day’ on 19 July – driven particularly by short-distance trips.
Young people are particularly keen to get to leisure travel. Total sales of railcards, which give people a third off most leisure fares, are up 6.5% compared to 2019, driven by sales of 26–30 and 16–25 railcards.
Journeys with the 26–30 railcard have increased to 300,000 a week – up by 43,000 journeys since the beginning of June, and journeys with the 16–25 railcard are up to 1.03m journeys a week – up 49,000 journeys since the beginning of June.
While leisure journeys are recovering quickly, commuting and business rail journeys are still well below pre-pandemic levels. Overall, rail industry revenue is just 59% of that seen in 2019.
To encourage more people to take the train, the rail industry has launched its biggest national marketing campaign in a generation entitled ‘Let’s get back on track’.
Rail companies have also worked with the UK Government to introduce new flexi season tickets to provide better value to returning commuters dividing their time between home and the office.
The Department for Transport has awarded a new National Rail Contract to Avanti West Coast and the West Coast Partnership Development.
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HS2 has begun work on assembling the project's longest ‘green tunnel’ in Greatworth, West Northamptonshire.
TfWM has announced that passenger tram services on the West Midlands Metro extension in Wolverhampton will start on 17 September.
Derby City Council has announced that it is seeking talks with Alstom in response to expected job losses at its Derby factory.
Network Rail has announced that it is investing more than 1 million GBP in improving rail infrastructure around Glasgow, Scotland.
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Network Rail and Govia Thameslink Railway have demonstrated that digital signalling on the Northern City Line is ready for passenger service.
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HS2's high-speed electric trains have become the first in the world to achieve BSI's PAS 2080 carbon reduction standard.
Northern has revealed before and after images of its 350,000 GBP transformation project at the Neville Hill depot in Leeds.
Network Rail will commence a major upgrade project on the River Devon Viaduct, which carries the railway over the River Trent in Newark.
Network Rail is set to switch on 116 newly installed digital signals in south west London and Berkshire from 19 August.
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Northern has released new dashcam footage to provide a first look at the upcoming Northumberland line connecting Newcastle to Ashington.
Transport for London (TfL) has announced that the first of its new Piccadilly Line trains have arrived in Germany for testing.
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Transport for London (TfL) and Tram Operations Limited (TOL) have been fined following the Sandilands Tram derailment in November 2016.
Network Rail has signed a MoU with SBB to collaborate on deploying technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) on the railway.
Eurostar Group has rolled out a contactless, biometric check-in system to improve efficiency at London St Pancras Station.
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The University of Birmingham has been awarded £15m by the UKRPIF to establish a new railway research and innovation centre at Goole.
HS2 Ltd has begun the procurement process for the APM system that will run between Solihull's Interchange Station and Birmingham Airport.
Hitachi Rail has been awarded an eight-year contract to continue its maintenance of 19 intercity Class 802 trains – the Nova 1 fleet.
Train companies in England have launched a passenger consultation on plans to 'modernise' customer service across the rail network.
HS2 has announced that a second set of proposed changes to the High Speed Rail (Crewe – Manchester) Bill has been introduced to Parliament.
Transport for London (TfL) has exercised an option to order an additional 11 new DLR trains from CAF to enter service by 2026.
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HS2 has released the first images of the tunnel boring machine that will dig Bromford Tunnel between North Warwickshire and Birmingham.
Network Rail has completed 16 days of major track upgrades in the Clay Cross and Milford tunnels in Derbyshire.
Northern has announced plans to equip up to 40 of its trains with data collection kits to improve predictive maintenance on the rail network.
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has provisionally concluded that Hitachi’s acquisition of Thales GTS could reduce competition.
Nexus has contracted Furrer+Frey to renew Newcastle Metro's electrification equipment to help improve the system's reliability.
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Northern has upgraded its depot in Barrow-in-Furness to enable longer trains to operate between Cumbria and Manchester.
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With Railtex taking place in Birmingham, we take a look at the history of Birmingham’s Curzon Street within the context of HS2.
Jonn Elledge on the absolute madness that is terminating HS2 at Old Oak Common rather than Euston for the foreseeable future.
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Great Western Railway (GWR) and Eversholt Rail have extended their maintenance partnership with Hitachi Rail.
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The High Speed Rail Group and HS2 Ltd have both hit back at a report created by the Cheshire Wildlife Trust about HS2's environmental impact.
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