manchester city centre fountain

Cheap Train Tickets to Manchester

Get the cheapest fares to Manchester with our split ticket search

Cheap Trains to Manchester

This destination guide for Manchester provides tips for finding cheap train tickets. For up-to-date information and train times across the UK, search with Split My Fare.

Tip 1 If you can, book in advance for cheap train tickets to Manchester
Book your journey early to get the best price on trains. Most operators release advance tickets for direct routes up to 12 weeks before travel. Advance fares are in high demand, so the earlier you can book, the better. If you can't buy your ticket until the day of travel, advance fares may be available up to one hour before departure if they haven't sold out.

There are many Manchester Attractions worth visiting; take in a Premier League match at Old Trafford or The Etihad Stadium, enjoy an interesting visit to Manchester Art Gallery, or head into the city centre to watch a play at the Royal Exchange Theatre. The city centre is an excellent destination with some of the U.K.'s best attractions, ideal for families and groups of friends, and a popular place to travel on business. Attraction tickets can usually be bought in advance online. There are many more ideas of places worth visiting in Greater Manchester, too.

Manchester Piccadilly is the main train station in Manchester, with other Manchester train stations with trains running being Manchester Victoria, Manchester Oxford Road, and Manchester Deansgate. Along with the Manchester train stations in the city centre, Manchester Airport also has a train station. There is easy access to the high street from Manchester Piccadilly; it is just a 15-minute walk.

Regular direct services run from Manchester Piccadilly to Manchester Airport with train operators on the route, including Northern, TransPennine Express, and Transport for Wales; trains to Manchester Airport also stop at Manchester Victoria. If you want to go to Liverpool Lime Street by train travel, there are regular services from Manchester Piccadilly with the journey time to Liverpool Lime Street being around 53 minutes. If you want cheap tickets to London, Avanti West Coast runs regular services to Euston Station. Avanti West Coast uses high-speed Pendolino trains, meaning the journey time from Manchester Piccadilly is around 2 hours and 15 minutes. Manchester Sheffield is another popular route with East Midlands Railway, one of several operators running services to Sheffield from Manchester Piccadilly. Six train companies run trains from Manchester Piccadilly across the UK: Avanti West Coast, CrossCountry, East Midlands Railway, Northern Trains, TransPennine Express, and Transport for Wales.

If you are driving into Manchester, there are several car parks to choose from, though there is limited parking, with the best car parks being the Short Stay Car Park and Long Stay Car Park at Manchester Piccadilly.
Tip 2 Use a site that doesn't charge a booking fee
Split My Fare doesn't charge any credit card or booking fees; we only deduct 15% of any savings made if you successfully split your ticket when looking for cheap train tickets to Manchester. If we don't find you a split ticker for your journey, you won't be charged any fee. Most other retailers charge booking fees, Trainline charge up to £1.50 on every ticket you book.
Tip 3 If your train is delayed, claim a refund through Delay Repay
Unfortunately, trains don't always arrive at the station on time. If your service is late, claim a full or partial refund on your tickets to Manchester city centre with Delay Repay. Check with the Operating Company you travel with what their refund policy is; some operators offer compensation for any delay over 15 minutes, claim for a refund with the operator directly.
Tip 4 Travel to quieter, less popular stations
Ticket prices are based on demand; busier routes to busier stations in the city centre are likely to be more expensive. When looking to find cheap train tickets to Manchester, it may be worth staying on a quieter, less direct route, which may involve changes. If you depart just outside Manchester, you may make a more significant saving. If you are looking for more flexibility on your travel, you can book flexible anytime tickets or other anytime fares.

The Museum of Science & Industry is worth a visit if you've got kids. If you're looking for a good night out, The Printworks is a great place to go.

Manchester's most famous football clubs, City and United, have huge stadiums worth visiting. The city centre has a huge student population, a buzzing social scene with many pubs and clubs and is the birthplace of the industrial revolution. Manchester is the third most visited city in the U.K.

The Museum of Science & Industry is worth a visit if you've got kids. If you're looking for a good night out, The Printworks is a great place to go.

Manchester's most famous football clubs, City and United, have huge stadiums that are worth visiting. The city has a huge student population, a buzzing social scene with many pubs and clubs and is the birthplace of the industrial revolution. Manchester is the third most visited city in the U.K.

Tip 5 When travelling in a group, book together
You can get 1/3 off tickets when you travel together in a group of 3 to 9 people. Make sure to take the same train during off-peak hours; a discount is automatically applied to your journey if it is eligible. Avoid the hassle of buying one ticket each when you find split train tickets to Manchester by selecting to receive e-Tickets and forwarding them to your group.

Mancunians are known for their strength and togetherness in a forward-thinking city that they take pride in. The city has many famous musical acts, fantastic shopping centres, high street shopping, and restaurants run by top chefs, including Simon Rogan and Jason Atherton. Manchester has plenty to offer tourists no matter what they seek.

Top Manchester Tours and Attractions

Tip 6 Compare the price of single and return tickets
When taking a round trip to Manchester Piccadilly Train Station, it can be worth comparing single and return fares to find the cheapest train tickets. Two single tickets may work out less expensive than a return; Split My Fare works out and sells you the cheapest combination of tickets.
Tip 7 Take a slower train to Manchester
Take a slower service if you're looking for cheap train tickets to Manchester and don't mind taking slightly longer to get to your destination. If a less direct train that may involve changes is more affordable, we will show you this option. If you only want to see the quickest journeys to Manchester, you can select only to see these faster trains.

The Northern Quarter is a 10-minute walk from Manchester Piccadilly, here you can experience a taste of what sets Manchester apart. Head to the Castlefield conservation area to see the 18th-century canal system. The interactive Museum of Science and Industry traces the period of the city when it was a textile powerhouse

Tip 8 Compare the prices of standard and first-class tickets
First-class Tickets may sometimes be similarly priced or cheaper than standard-class Tickets. If few first-class tickets have been sold, their price may be reduced, whereas if standard class has been fully booked, these fares will be much higher. Compare the cost of standard and first-class easily on our site using a simple dropdown.

Things to Do in Manchester

The inside of the Manchester Palace Theatre & Opera House, with a stage surrounded by red seats and numerous balconies

Palace Theatre & Opera House

The Manchester City Etihad Stadium with tiered blue seats with fans standing and a grass football pitch in the centre

Manchester City Etihad Stadium Tour

Manchester AO Arena, a modern cladded building with grass on its roof, people walking up a ramp and trees surrounding it

Manchester AO Arena

TeamSport Go Karting tarmac track in Manchester surrounded by walls with go-karts travelling at speed

TeamSport Indoor Go Karting Manchester

The Manchester Museum, an old windowed neo-gothic building with people walking past and a road in front

Manchester Museum

The National Football Museum, a tall glass windowed building of a geometric shape with a pavement in front and people walking past

National Football Museum

Main Stations in Manchester

  • Manchester Airport
  • Manchester Oxford Road
  • Manchester Victoria

Popular Trains to Manchester

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is a train to Manchester?

The journey from London to Manchester typically takes 2 hours 35 minutes. Trains may take slightly longer during holidays and at weekends.

What train goes to Manchester?

You can get a train to Manchester from almost anywhere, with journeys stopping at Manchester Victoria, Manchester Piccadilly and Manchester Oxford Road.

What is the best train station to get to Manchester?

If you are travelling to Manchester, the best arrival station is Manchester Piccadilly, as it is the largest station in Manchester, with services from across the U.K. arriving here.

How much is a child train ticket to Manchester?

The cost of a child train ticket to Manchester can vary depending on where you are travelling from and how far in advance you book. To find the best deals, book tickets as far in advance as possible for your journey.