How to cut your train fare by half

Train passengers could slash their fares by buying more tickets Credit: ITV News

Train passengers could slash their fares by up to 60 per cent by buying a series of tickets - rather than one standard fare. It doesn't involve breaking your journey, just making sure you have a series of tickets between stations on your route.

It's well known that buying a train ticket on the day you'll pay the highest price for travelling but what's little known or indeed publicised is the concept of split ticketing. By breaking up the journey into smaller sections the cost is often cut by half. Passengers in Exeter today were amazed.

One told us: "It just seems unfair that people who are a bit more savvy can get a lot cheaper than people who perhaps don't travel as often - those people have to pay a much more expensive price."

The savings are significant, for example, a standard off peak return from Barnstaple to York is £156.20 but by splitting the journey into 7 sections with separate tickets it would cost less than half the price at £68.

And even going through London there's a saving, Taunton to Southend should be £81. Instead tickets to Paddington, then the underground, then Liverpool Street to Southend is cheaper at £58.60.

Seth Conway put the concept to the test by buying several tickets Credit: ITV News

I put it to the test filming a journey on my phone. I travelled on Crosscountry trains from Tiverton to Birmingham. An on the day price was £110 return. But I bought a ticket first to Taunton and then from there to Bristol Temple Meads and again a new ticket to Cheltenham.

More than halfway on my journey I had to change seats but crucially I stayed on the same train. I used four tickets on my route through to Birmingham.

The combined cost of my journey using split ticketing was £61.00.

Online Money saving experts are now demanding more transparency in ticket prices.

The Green Party have also this week called for an overhaul of how train fares are calculated and at least a ten per cent cut in prices.

Ricky Knight from the Green Party says: "It's so bewildering and it's actually the antithesis of everything that we want to do, which is to get people out of their cars and onto public transport, onto a train network which is actually efficient, effective and fairly priced, well at the moment it's bewilderingly confusing and it's certainly not a fair price."

But cheaper train fares in the region are out there, you just need to know how to find them.