The Galleon - Portsmouth's Student Newspaper

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All Aboard the Millennial Railcard

Reaching the end of the Young Persons Railcard age limit? This one's for you!

According to the Guardian, early 2018 is set to see the introduction of a new Railcard scheme specifically for 26-30 year olds. In a document circulated on a UK rail forum which appears to have been sent to Rail Delivery Group (RDG) staff, it seems that the new railcard is expected to offer benefits similar to the 16-25 Railcard, with up to a third off rail and tube fares.

Students and regular working commuters can only ever bond over the extortionate cost of train fares across the country. Unless booking tickets 12 weeks in advance whilst already being the proud owner of a 16-25 railcard, train fares at the best of times are still dear enough to burn a hole in your pocket.

Dubbed the ‘Millennial Railcard’, news of the new Railcard scheme will be more than welcomed by millions of 26-30 year olds up and down the country. It is alleged that the ‘Millennial’ Railcard will run on an annual basis of £30 for the year, unlike the 16-25 Railcard which can be purchased on a rolling three-year deal. If users are smart enough, they can purchase the railcard the day before they turn 31, validating another full year of cheaper commutes and other journeys, with the same applying to the 16-25 railcard too.

“It will be firstly trialled by Greater Anglia Railway from early December with up to 10,000 railcards in the initial try-out.”

It is also thought that the railcard will be rolled out digitally via the Railcard app on Apple or Android rather than its traditional method of a physical card which holders must carry with them on every journey. Although the holders of the new railcard will benefit the same as other railcard users, they will be subject to a £12 minimum ticket price, other than for advanced fares, if travelling before 10am Monday – Friday. Just in time for that early morning commute.

It will be firstly trialled by Greater Anglia Railway from early December with up to 10,000 railcards in the initial try-out. If the trial goes well, it should be set to go nationwide at the beginning of 2018. On average, holders of the current 16-25 Railcard save around £190 a year on fares, and it is thought that the new Railcard for 26-30 year-olds will save even more.

Having a railcard gives more than just a third off rail fares. It also offers the cardholder benefits across restaurants, hotels, day out attractions and more. Cardholders can also save up to 20% off Virgin Experience Days and sign up to tastecard for a free 2-month membership trial with 50% off or 2 for 1 meals at over 1000 restaurants across the UK. The power of the railcard is more than just about saving on the tracks, but saving on the road, in the restaurant and even at theatre shows.

Turning 26 may feel like a long way off for most university students, but if the trial run next month proves positive, then it can only be a good thing for ‘millennials’ up and down the country. Something every student and young person alike can agree would be great news and leave us with more money to spend on avocados and completely necessary Costa coffee morning takeaways.

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