Trains to Southend
Cheap Trains to Southend
"Southend is a dormitory town for London. But it also has this thing of being the playground of the East End – a glamorous holiday town.” Helen Mirren
Southend-On-Sea more commonly referred to as Southend is a town and borough on the Essex coast. Famous for its pier, beaches and other attractions along the coast, Southend has a lot more to offer couples and families than just the sea.
Tip 1: It is cheaper to buy tickets in advance
Buying an advance train ticket to Southend can get you big savings, these tickets are made available by the Train Operating Companies about 12 weeks before your travel date. You will need to be quick as these tickets are often in high demand, so can sell out quickly. If there are any still available you can book these tickets up to 1 hour before departure.
Chalkwell Beach is just five minutes' walk from the Chalkwell station and there's a number of food and drink stalls located down the length of the coast. Quieter than the other beaches, Chalkwell is brilliant for those who want to escape from the hustle and bustle. For a more lively coastal experience, it is worth trying City Beach on the centre of the coast, it has state of the art lighting columns and a refreshing fun fountain for kids. There's also a cycle shop around here that you can hire bikes from, this is worth doing as it's a good way to get around Southend and there are some good cycle routes.
Tip 2: Try to stay away from booking fees
Many train ticket retailers charge a booking fee of up to £1.50 when you travel with them every time you book which can increase your ticket cost. At Split My Fare we don't charge booking fees and don't charge credit card fees either. The only fee is 10% of any savings you make if you split your fare, no split= no fees.
Southend Pier is the most famous attraction in Southend, touting itself as the longest pier in the world. On it, you'll find a tea room, mini-golf, a cafe, and the Royal Pavilion entry is just £5.50 and gives access to many different events and activities. The Pier is less than ten-minutes walk from Southend Central Station or you can get a train to the Southend Pier itself if you prefer.
Tip 3: Apply for a refund if your train to Southend is late
Should your train unfortunately be delayed you can apply for a full or partial refund using the Delay Repay scheme. Depending on which train company you are travelling with you might be eligible even if your train is delayed by as little as 15 minutes. You will need to check the website ofhe train operator to see what delay times they refund for and then apply for compensation through them.
The Southend Sea Life Centre is located just down the road from the pier and features over 40 different types of animals including sharks, tropical pufferfish, clownfish and mongeese. The last admission is at 5:15 PM but it might be worth getting there earlier to beat the queues.
Tip 4: Popular journeys cost more
Train ticket prices depend on demand, so if a journey is popular the price will be higher. One way to save money is to travel on trains that avoid popular routes and busy city centres. If you are travelling to Southend this might mean that instead of arriving at Central Station you get off the train at a station nearby and save money. Please check our information to help you find cheap train tickets.
The main station is Southend Central station right in the middle of the city. To get there from London, the station you depart from is London Liverpool Street, it takes just over an hour, making it the perfect day trip for city dwellers. Services also depart regularly back to London, so you won't be waiting longer than a half-hour during most of the day. Trains to the Airport run from Central Station and take under 20 minutes with Greater Anglia, meaning it's also easy to travel abroad.
Tip 5: Purchasing as a group saves money
If you are going to Southend as a group to visit the seafront, or for work with colleagues, you can get a Groupsave discount. If 3 - 9 people book their train tickets together and travel together on an off-peak train they might get up to 1/3 off making it cheaper for each visitor in the group. Booking with E-Tickets also makes things easier, you won't need to worry about having lots of paper tickets to pass round and can simply forward the E-Tickets to your group.
Near Chalkwell beach is Netpark Digital Park, the world's first digital art park. You can expect to find year-round exhibits that host over 15 digital artworks and stories created by artists, writers, illustrators, and school pupils from schools. Each piece of artwork is an app that can be downloaded to your phone with content hosted with GPS coordinates.
Tip 6: Compare the price of Returns and Singles
When travelling, it is common for people to return to the same location as they departed from, so it might seem best to book a return fare. This could be cheapesr but buying two single tickets instead might save you more money. When booking with us, we do the hard work for you by showing you the cheapest possible fare for your journey.
There are a couple of railway stations in Southend, with Southend Central which is the largest and also Westcliff to the west, and Southend East. Southend Victoria is positioned towards the north of the town and serves a variety of services across the country too. It is worth taking the train direct to Southend Central and hiring a bike or going on foot to see all the attractions.
Tip 7: Slower trains are normally cheaper
You may want the fastest rail service to get to your destination as fast as possible. in which case we can help by giving an option to only show these faster trains. If you're not in a hurry though, traveling on a slower, less direct train less direct train possibly via a local line can save you money. We automatically show you the cheapest travel options so you are able to take a slower train if you want to and it works out cheaper.
The Southend Central Museum & Planetarium was built in 1905 and houses collections of local natural history. The planetarium seats 20 people and each presentation is given live, so you can ask questions too. It's recommended to pre-book to make sure you get a place, especially on the weekends.
Tip 8: Look at the price of first-class tickets
First-class fares are sometimes cheaper than you might think as their price depends on the demand for them. If there are not many passengers booked in first class, the price can be similar to a standard fare, or even cheaper. There is a toggle on our website so you can look at the prices of first-class tickets and easily compare them against standard-class. A great advantage of traveling first-class is having greater comfort, with larger seats and complimentary food and drinks, meaning you arrive in Southend feeling more relaxed.
The Peterboat restaurant and bistro offers delicious British Pub food and seafood in an attractive setting along the Thames Estuary. Oldham's fish restaurant along the seafront provides classic fish and chips that are perfect for eating on the beach, though if it's a colder day inside seating is available on a first-come-first-served basis.
Tip 9: Railcards make your journey cheaper
When you take the train to Southend you can find greater savings by using a railcard, it can save you around 1/3 off the cost of your ticket every time you travel. They cost as little as £30 per year, with a wide variety of different cards available to suit different passengers. The greatest savings are made by regular travellers but even using the card as little as three times a year can save you money. Additionally you can get the benefit of free entry to different UK attractions as well as many discounts.
The Two Together Railcard, allows two adults to travel together regularly and save 1/3 on most fares. The Family and Friends Railcard provides 60% off fares for children and 1/3 off almost all adult fares when up to 4 children and 4 adults go on journeys together, so it is ideal for larger or extended families. The senior railcard offers the same discount, but at a reduced cost of £70 for three years. Disabled passengers are able to get discounts on their train fares with the Disabled Persons Railcard which is £30 a year and gives 1/3 off most tickets.
Other Railcards available include the Network Railcard, 16-25 Railcard, and 26-30 Railcard. The railcard website has more information and cards can be found on sale at any National Rail Ticket Office.
Tip 10: Being flexible can get you bigger savings
Flexibility in your arrangements can help get the best savings possible for your journey. Looking at different options in terms of time, the date of travel and also avoiding weekends will mean your trains to Southend cost even less.
Main stations in Southend
- Southend Airport
- Southend Central
- Southend East
- Southend Victoria
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I get to Southend Airport by train?
You can get to Southend Airport by train from Liverpool London Street Station. Trains run regularly and the route also goes via other major cities.
How do I get to Southend Beach?
You can walk to Southend Beach from Southend Central station or Thorpe Bay station.
What is Southend famous for?
Southend is famous for its beaches and also has the longest pier in the World at around 1.3 miles long.