LNER quotes rail passenger £786.80 for two Newcastle to London return tickets – as ‘cheapest’ available fare

Rail fares in England and Wales rose by 4.9 per cent in March   (Getty Images)
Rail fares in England and Wales rose by 4.9 per cent in March (Getty Images)

An LNER train passenger was shocked to find that travel for two from Newcastle to London would set him back almost £800.

Social media user Lee shared a screenshot of his quoted £786.80 fare to Twitter/X with the caption: “For a return from Newcastle to London. @LNER, are you out of your actual minds?!”

The two standard returns from the northern city to the capital were anytime single tickets – advertised on the website as the “cheapest” available fare.

In the comments of his post, Lee explained that the tickets were for travel between a Tuesday and a Thursday, and he was looking to book a week in advance of the train journeys.

As for a first-class return for the 247-mile trip, £1,049.20 for two tickets, including a hot or cold meal, was shown as the cheapest route.

For comparison, a round trip flight between the two cities with British Airways starts from just £70 and takes just over an hour.

In March, a rail increase on all train ticket prices saw fares rise by 4.9 per cent in England and Wales.

Stunned social media users replied to the steeply-priced screenshot with their own queries.

One Twitter user asked: “Do you get to keep the train?”, while another said: “How is it that flying abroad is a LOT cheaper than taking a train in the same country?! You could actually fly to Newcastle for far less than taking a train.”

An LNER spokesperson said: “We haven’t been provided with the full details for this journey. However, it appears the prices quoted are for peak-time travel during a period of very high demand.

“Alternative trains have much cheaper Advance and 70 Minute Flex tickets available for travel in Standard from Newcastle to London King’s Cross, subject to seating capacity being available.

“We always encourage customers to book as early as possible for best value fares.”