As the UK Rail Network begins to ramp up its operation after the cuts due to lack of demand – two companies have changed their travel policy, requiring passengers to reserve before travel.
Both LNER (whom operate the East Coast Main Line Route) and Avanti West Coast (who operate the West Coast Main Line) will be implementing this to promote physical distancing on their trains.
LNER’s new policy goes live at 11 am on Monday 18 May.
All passengers will be required to make a reservation before travel. You will need a reservation for the specific LNER service you wish to travel on – otherwise, you won’t be able to board the train.
Onboard the train, you will need to practice physical distancing, keeping at least two rows apart from other passengers on board in Standard and one row in First Class.
Train times have changed. In addition, there is no onboard catering and no alcohol allowed to be consumed onboard.
You can find out more at https://www.lner.co.uk/travel-information/coronavirus-travel-information/
Avanti West Coast
For journeys from 18 May 2020 onwards, Avanti West Coast strongly recommend you book a place on the train to travel on their services, to limited availability of seats
Unlike LNER who will flat-out refuse you for travel if you don’t have a reservation, there’s no guarantee you’ll be able to board if you don’t have a reservation for the train you want to travel on.
Note, that Avanti West Coast has closed their First Class lounges and waiting rooms until further notices. Shops aboard Voyager trains will also be closed, whilst shops on Pendolino operated services will remain open.
Phil Whittingham, Managing Director of Avanti West Coast, said:
“We’re appealing to our valued customers to help us and other passengers by only travelling with a reservation. If everyone does this, we’ll be able to keep social distancing in place on board, both for our customers and our people.
“If customers do turn up without a reservation, we’ll do our best to help but we can’t guarantee they’ll be able to take the train they want.”
Further changes are at https://www.avantiwestcoast.co.uk/help-and-support/coronavirus-travel-information
Changes in travel
With physical distancing being a thing these days, it seems that on public transport, capacity is going to be way down from pre-COVID-19 days. Capacity will increase on the network from Monday, with 70% of services resuming (so you will need to check before you travel if the train you usually catch is operating).
As usual, you should only be travelling if you must and for essential journeys only.
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