The Advantages of Travelling by Train

Train travel has never been more popular. More people are taking the train and travelling further by train. Find out why travelling by train is still so popular.

Written by Will from our web team

8 mins read | February 14, 2022

In the past 30 years, there’s been a significant increase in people seeing the advantages of travelling by train. The number of passenger miles travelled has also gone up by 126% .

Travelling via the British rail network is not only convenient, but its many scenic routes and historical train stations can make it feel like an adventure for many.

The enthusiasm for rail transport is far more than just nostalgia though. Taking the train makes more sense than ever for tourists, leisure travellers, and those who travel for work.

In this article, we’ll examine the many benefits of train travel and explain why rail transport is now the preferred form of travel.

Benefits of train travel 

A man and a child seated in a train and looking out the window.

Train operating companies like Avanti West Coast are passionate about rail. Every year, we improve our trains, improve existing rolling stock, and add new services that really benefit our passengers.

We believe rail transport is the ideal way to travel across the UK, and here are five reasons why.

1. Convenience

One of the biggest advantages of travelling by train is the convenience of getting from A to B. With thousands of stations across the UK, it’s easy to go almost anywhere, whether it’s a major city or somewhere more rural.

Their reliability on a network of tracks means that traffic jams are almost non-existent. The convenience of well-connected train stations also means they’re easy to get to, either by tram, car, underground, or even walking.

2. Extra sightseeing

While millions enjoy travelling by car, going by rail is more relaxing and requires less concentration, leaving you more time for reading. You can also take the opportunity to drink in some of the sights of the country.

Operators such as Avanti have trains that take you through some of the most beautiful landscapes in the UK. Whether it’s great coastal views of the best of the British countryside, there’s always a view to behold.

Of course, scenic routes are just one of the benefits of train travel. However, it’s just as important as to have a warm and pleasant trip.

3. Comfort

We recently spent £117m refurbishing our Pendolino fleet to make travel experiences as comfortable as ever. The program has gone down as the UK’s biggest ever in terms of train upgrades.

As well as 25,000 new and ergonomic Standard Class seats, there are also power points at every seat so you can charge your phone, tablet, or laptop on the go. 

There’s more luggage room than ever in Standard Class now, so you can bring everything you need without worrying about space for your personal belongings.

Our trains also have brand new and well-stocked on-board shops, featuring better and more detailed customer information displays. 

Such improvements go a long way to make sure every customer has the most relaxing and comfortable journey. For that extra bit of luxury, travellers can also upgrade Standard Premium or First Class for additional legroom, free wi-fi, and other benefits. 

4. Direct to central locations

Avanti West Coast directly manages 16 prime stations on the West Coast Main Line. They range from Birmingham International right through to Wigan North Western. You’ll find stations in major cities and town centres, and are easily accessible.

When you get off the train, you'll be close to the places you need to be, including hotels, business districts, shops, and other local attractions.

The convenience and ability to get to central destinations are important for travel. However, some may worry about how trains can have an adverse effect on the planet. 

5. Sustainability

We’re investing heavily in sustainability to reduce our carbon footprint. To achieve such targets, we’ve focussed on our four pillars: planet, people, customers, and communities.

We have committed to being carbon neutral by 2031, and we’ve already made significant strides on our journey. We’ve reduced non-traction energy consumption by 11.5% since 2019/2020. We’ve also reduced our water consumption by 2.1%

We’ve increased our recycling rate to 52% and improved fleet efficiency by 13.5% in terms of kgCO2e/veh-km. In layperson’s terms, this means that the amount of carbon dioxide put out by our trains per kilometre has gone down significantly. 

Trains are typically considered a more sustainable form of transport than air travel or car, but more can always be done. We continue to keep doing what’s needed to make train travel even more green every single year.

Benefits of electric trains


An electric train travelling quickly through the UK countryside.

First, there were steam trains, then diesel trains followed. Now, train companies like Avanti are moving away from diesel to a future that embraces green mobility.

We provide our own electric trains through our series of Pendolino trains. Here are six environmental benefits electric trains bring to customers and the planet: 

1. Lower carbon footprint

Electric trains produce zero emissions either when in motion or waiting at a station. Unlike diesel engines, electric trains don’t push out harmful CO2 emissions, which makes their use ideal for reducing carbon emissions.

2. Highly energy efficient

Electric trains are very efficient at converting electrical energy into movement. Every mile travelled on an electric train uses less energy than a diesel train.

This is because of the energy conversion process. 

Electric motors tap in directly to the electrical current to create motion. However, diesel engines need to burn fuel to produce energy and then change that energy into movement. 

This extra step reduces a train's efficiency and that's why diesel engines need more energy to travel the same distance.

3. Real high speed trains

The greater energy efficiency of electric trains also makes them a lot faster.

The way diesel trains create energy limits the amount of power they use to create motion. In addition, they're carrying the combustion engine that creates the energy and the fuel too.

Electric train engines are generally lighter and, of course, they don't need to carry fuel. They get the fuel via the pantograph from the overhead electrical lines. So, electric trains go faster not just because they're more energy efficient but because they're lighter too.

4. More cost effective

Electric trains have fewer moving parts than diesel trains, reducing the cost of maintaining them. Because electric trains are better maintained, they can dedicate more time to taking passengers where they need to be.

As a result, we can pass the savings onto you and more of our fleet can stay in action for longer periods.

5. Less noise pollution

Noise pollution can be a disturbance and while trains have been associated with being loud, modern technologies make newer models quieter.

Like electric cars, electric trains are quieter than diesel trains. As such, journeys by rail are more peaceful for passengers and therefore more comfortable. It also means trains are quieter for the residential homes we pass by.

6. Better air quality

Like diesel buses, diesel trains pump out harmful nitrogen oxides and particulate matter, as well as carbon emissions. By comparison, electric trains don’t, which makes not only the trains themselves cleaner, but also means stations are less polluted and have a better quality of air.

Benefits of first class travel


A close-up photo of a doily on the back of a train seat that says ‘First Class’.

All our passengers get five-star treatment on board Avanti trains. Wherever you’re going in the UK, we offer three competitively-priced ticket classes to suit your needs and budget.

Standard class train tickets

In Standard Class, we make sure we get all the essentials right to set you up for the best possible journey.

Stay connected with our free Wi-Fi so you can work while you travel. We also have well-stocked onboard shops for snacks, drinks, and treats from carefully-chosen suppliers. 

You can also save time by ordering food and drink from your device via our onboard hub. Simply collect your purchases when they’re ready.

Standard premium class train tickets

Upgrade to Standard Premium for next level comfort and value, and is available on most of our Pendolino services.

You’ll have a guaranteed table with extra leg room. Each window seat also has its own power socket and you can connect directly to the train’s free Wi-Fi.

It’s also easy to upgrade to Standard Premium from a Standard ticket too. You can also go the extra mile by turning Standard Class into First Class.

First class train tickets

Go for the ultimate train experience and travel First Class. Whether you’re on the move for business or pleasure, there’s always an advantage to travelling in style.

First class train benefits include complimentary food and drink served direct to your table. You can also take advantage of our well-appointed First Class lounges while you wait for your train at the station.

Travelling by train with Avanti

A backpack with a map and a pair of sunglasses sticking out, at a train station during sunset. 

Taking the train is a more convenient, cost effective, and enjoyable way to travel the country. You can be rest assured that Avanti West Coast is committed to providing you with the very best experience aboard our fleet.

Start planning your next train journey today. You can also save money by buying your train tickets in advance.

If you’re a frequent traveller, order your free Club Avanti reward card for benefits like free tickets, free hot drinks, and money off snacks at the onboard shop.

Frequent train travellers save up to a third or more by taking advantage of Railcards:

Railcards cost just £30 a year, which works out to just £2.50 a month.

Download the Avanti West Coast app to make booking train tickets even more convenient, and keep up-to-date with the latest train timetables.

Buy train tickets for your next journey

Buying through our website or app saves you money because we never charge booking fees.

To take a look at more ways to save including using a Railcard, booking in advance, and booking as a group, visit our ways to save page.

Avanti West Coast App

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