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How to avoid expensive rail fares after increased ticket prices

Credit: PA

With rail passengers experiencing the largest fare rise in five years, Consumers' Association Which? reveals how passengers can save on their commutes.

3.4%
Increase on average ticket prices across Britain.

An annual pass from Neath to Cardiff has risen by £56. It will now cost £1,708.

Tips from Which? on how to save money when booking train tickets:

Book early and save 70%

A set number of reduced-price ‘Advance’ tickets are allocated to specific trains and are sold on a first-come, first-served basis. So despite train companies almost doubling the number of cheaper Advance fares in recent years, passengers will need to be quick to get the best choice of deals.

Find an alternative route and save up to £60

Some slightly longer routes could save passengers around £60. Alternative journeys are the next big money-saving opportunity, especially for peak-time travel.

Split your ticket and save more than 80%

A split ticket is where passengers buy multiple tickets to cover one journey, rather than buying one single 'through' ticket.

This allows passengers to pick up the cheapest fares for different parts of their route, capitalising on Advance tickets and off-peak fare changes.

There are several website which help with finding split tickets.

Travel off-peak and save £80

Passengers are advised to check the train company’s website for peak and off-peak times, and search for tickets online checking prices before and after their preferred departure time.