london kings cross station platform 6 and 7 lner train passengers walking

Split My Fare vs Trainline - The Best Site to Book Tickets with?

The biggest ticket retailer in the UK is Trainline, their company logo is instantly recognisable, but this doesn't necessarily mean you should use them to get cheap train tickets for your next trip. In this guide, we look at the advantages and disadvantages of each and assess which is the better option to book train tickets with.

Comparing Prices on Trainline vs Split My Fare

A comparison by Money Saving Expert* found that Split My Fare typically offers cheaper rail travel. didn't work out cheaper than its rivals on any of the 15 popular routes searched.

A big reason we tend to be cheaper than Trainline tickets is that they charge a booking fee of £1.50 on most bookings, regardless of whether a saving has been made or not for your chosen date. Similarly, when we compared the prices of 10 popular routes leaving at the same time, Split My Fare provided cheaper tickets than the Trainline on all 10.

We don't display any adverts to customers, but they show ads that may distract you from booking your trip.


From To Trainline Split My Fare
Birmingham New Street Newcastle £91.85 £81.37
Leeds Coventry £69.35 £33.31
Manchester Piccadilly Derby £23.65 £23.63
Glasgow Central Nottingham £110.15 £78.10
Cardiff Central Sheffield £112.55 £64.40
Edinburgh Waverley Leicester £125.20 £117.55
Liverpool Lime Street Southampton Central £106.35 £79.60
Bristol Temple Meads Brighton £68.80 £66.32
York Liverpool Lime Street £16.20 £13.47
London Kings Cross Edinburgh Waverley £44.95 £41.79

Trains departing after 13:00 on 14/09/2021

Trainline Features

1. They have a mobile app that passengers can use to speed up ticket-buying. You can also store your ticket on the app, so they're readily available when you arrive at the station. However, you can only search for splits via their mobile app, not on their website.

2. Unlike most retailers, they sell season cards for regular travellers to all stations on the national line. With their season ticket calculator, you can determine whether to buy discount cards such as weekly, monthly, or annual season cards. You can book train and coach travel and fares across Europe.

3. Companies can use them to make corporate bookings. Employees can book themselves and share expense receipts. If your work overruns, you will also be notified of the next alternative trains to take from your station. You can also search for times and tickets if your work is in Europe.

trainline logo

Split My Fare Features

1. From the start, we have focused on finding customers the lowest fares possible with split tickets. When Money Saving Expert tested 15 popular routes, they found we came out cheapest on 2 of these routes. Huge savings can be made with us on advance fares when there is availability.

2. We pride ourselves on providing quality customer service at all hours of the day, achieving a rating of 4.7 on Trustpilot. While many bigger retailers send canned responses, we respond to each customer individually, knowing circumstances can vary.

3. There are no booking fees. If you don't make a split ticket saving when you next book your journey to a UK station, no fee is charged. We will only deduct a small percentage of the savings made if we save you money by splitting your ticket.

split my fare logo

Trainline Cashback Offers

They have courted controversy over their cashback offer system. At the end of the booking process, no matter how many times you have used them, they tell you that you can claim money off your next booking. Users are encouraged to sign up for a cashback subscription, which costs £15 a month, by clicking the link. The tactic does not break advertising rules, but many sign up, unaware a site of this size would be trying to get them to sign up for a monthly membership elsewhere.

Which Retailer Should I Book My UK Rail Ticket With?

Booking fees, higher prices, and adverts may give you enough reasons not to return to the next time you book. With its highly-rated customer service and easy-to-use mobile app, you may fancy booking your next journey through Split My Fare instead.

split train ticket london

trustpilot reviews

What Split My Fare Customers Say:

This site was simple to use and significantly cheaper. It makes travelling affordable.
Shantie Toolsie
The best prices, great customer service, quick responses. Highly recommended.
Tania Tidswell
My journeys are now half as expensive, meaning I can travel twice as much! I will never use anyone else for tickets.
Aurin Leigh

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there an alternative to Trainline?

There are alternative retailers to book rail travel from to avoid the booking fees and higher prices of Trainline. Split My Fare came out cheaper on a price comparison when 15 popular journeys were tested against Trainline; we also don't charge booking fees.

Is booking on Trainline cheaper?

When we compared 15 popular journeys between Split My Fare and Trainline, we found that Trainline was not cheaper on all 15 journeys, and we provided lower-priced travel.

Why do you have to pay a booking fee on Trainline?

Trainline charges a booking fee to increase the price you pay for your train travel and maximise their profits.