UMP welcomes new whitepaper by Trainline on boosting sustainable travel

February 28, 2023

The Urban Mobility Partnership (UMP) is delighted to welcome the new white paper published by Trainline, UMP member,  on how collective action can build pride in rail and boost sustainable travel. We were delighted to attend the launch of this white paper at the I Came By Train event on  21st February 2023.

The report is an analysis by Trainline of 250,000 different popular UK journeys and shows that train offers the fastest and/or cheapest mode of travel compared with driving or flying in the majority of cases, if travellers are encouraged to make cost-saving decisions.

This Reasonable by Rail research shows:

  • 75% of journeys are cheaper or faster than driving, if travellers book in advance to secure the cheapest available price for the journey
  • 64% of train trips would be cheaper or faster if a railcard discount is applied to the average price paid for the journey
  • “Hero” routes which should be championed to encourage modal shift include:
    • London to Manchester, which is over an hour quicker by train than flying and £15 cheaper on average with a railcard
    • Manchester to Glasgow, which is an hour quicker than driving and £10 cheaper on average – or £24 with a railcard discount
    • Edinburgh to Newcastle, which is 90 minutes quicker than taking the car and £15 cheaper on average with a railcard
    • Bradford to London, which on average is 1hr27 quicker and £13 cheaper by train instead of driving

Other suggested ideas in the White Paper include producing cross-industry messaging that highlights how switching a journey to rail can reduce a traveller’s carbon footprint; the importance of working together  with the tech sector to give rail options more prominence in travel apps because they make journeys more sustainable; and considering further incentives to support sustainable travel, such as a “Green Railcard” that would reward frequent use.

UMP very much welcomes the work Trainline is committed to undertaking to ensure that train journeys across the UK can be made more sustainable and affordable for travellers. Train travel is a vital feature of the urban mobility landscape and is an essential solution to shaping the future of mobility. UMP is working with Trainline and our other members to work on how train can work with other key modes of travel including, car, bus, bike and e-scooter, to help towns and cities across the UK ensure a modal shift to make consumer journeys more sustainable.

UMP looks forward to continuing to work with our members to tackle the major challenges of congestion, air quality and climate change. 

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