Coronavirus (Covid-19) - Travel advice and guidance - please visit here for more information

 

Timetable updates - please visit here for more information

 

Keeping you safe - latest travel advice

Page last updated: 23 October 2020

 

When you travel, travel with confidence.

Your safety is our number one priority. Here, you can find out all the information you need for your upcoming journey including; how to book and reserve your seat, travel guidelines, what we are doing to keep you safe on-board and much, more.

 

 

We are ‘Good to Go’ accredited. This means that we’re adhering to Government and industry COVID-19 guidelines and have the processes in place to maintain cleanliness on-board and aid social distancing.

Looking for timetable information?

We are running a reduced service and you can find information on our latest timetables here.

Local lockdowns

We are working with the rail industry and government on restrictions in place for local lockdowns and how this impacts customers with existing tickets that are no longer able to travel. This page will be updated when we have an industry approach on ticket terms and conditions.

Restrictions are in place across different areas in the UK, please always check the local guidelines before you travel in England, Scotland or Wales.

 

Planning to make a journey by train?

  1. DO NOT TRAVEL – If you have symptoms of coronavirus. Please refer to the latest NHS guidance on symptoms here before you travel.
  2. ALLOW EXTRA TIME FOR TRAVEL – Please leave in plenty of time before your train departure. There may be one way systems and queues at stations that may add time to your journey.
  3. WEAR A FACE COVERING – It is mandatory to wear a face covering when passing through a railway station and when travelling on our services, unless you are exempt* £6,400 maximum fines are being issued by British Transport Police to people who do not wear a face covering. See our FAQs for more information
  4. KEEP YOUR DISTANCE – Please keep your distance from other passengers and our colleagues.
  5. WASH YOUR HANDS – Please wash your hands before and after travelling.

*Some people may not be able to wear a face covering, for example, those with breathing difficulties or those with disabilities. The Government have provided a list of exemptions. Which list can be found within the linked FAQs above.

Our travel guidelines:

Travel at quieter times
Book in advance and arrive early
Always use contactless payment
Always keep your distance
Always wear a face covering
Check your train times
If parking at the station leave an empty space between other cars
Before, during and after your journey - keep your hands clean
Stand well clear, allow others to disembark safely

Go CrossCountry with confidence

Can you travel at quieter times?

Our services have limited capacity, so we are asking all our customers to reserve a seat for their journey and travel at quieter times where possible. More information on how to reserve a seat can be found in the ‘before you travel’ section below. For more information on the level of reservations we had last week please use the button below.

 

Book ahead and stay safe

Social distancing measures are in place on-board help keep you safe. To help manage the number of customers travelling on any one train, we ask that you book in advance and reserve a seat on a specific service.

How to reserve your seat

You can make a seat reservation when booking directly via our website, mobile site or Train Tickets app. At the point of purchase, you will receive a reservation which will include your coach and seat number.

Please stick to your specific reserved service and seat so that we can ensure that everyone can adhere to social distancing.

If you already hold a valid ticket and don’t yet have a specific seat reservation, you can:

  1. Call our Customer Relations team on 03447 369 123 (Option 3) - Opening Hours: 8am to 4pm, 7 days a week
  2. E-mail Customer Relations at customer.relations@crosscountrytrains.co.uk
  3. Contact our Social Media team on Facebook via CrossCountry Trains on Facebook or Twitter @crosscountryuk available 24/7
  4. Any staffed station
  5. For on the day reservations only, please use our Ten Minute Reservation service.

Please note:

  • Places will be made available on a first-come-first-served basis, and when these are fully taken you will not be able to buy a ticket to travel on that train.
  • Due to reservation system updates, on some services you are currently unable to book up to 12 weeks in advance. Please visit our dedicated page to view the latest dates available.

To reduce physical contact, we are encouraging customers to select an e-Ticket or Smartcard for Season tickets, use contactless payments, cash is currently not being accepted on-board our services.

If you do not book ahead, please leave additional time for your journey and follow signage and instructions from station and train colleagues. If the service is already at capacity, you may be refused travel and asked to wait for an alternative service.

Passenger Assist

We are still operating both booked and un-booked Passenger Assistance services for those passengers that require this, although we recommend that you book ahead so we can ensure the correct assistance is provided.

When booking, our Passenger Assistance team may ask you some extra questions so that we can ensure that we balance your needs with the opportunity to respect social distancing requirements, so please allow a little more time to make your booking.

If you have not pre-booked assistance, please allow extra time for your journey and follow signage and instructions from station and train staff.

CrossCountry are supporting the National Rail Industry Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Scheme . Not all disabilities are visible and some won’t be immediately obvious to our colleagues. The Hidden Disability Sunflower, which is usually worn in the form of a lanyard, is a discreet way for us to be aware that support may be required from us throughout a customer’s journey. If you would like to obtain a lanyard, you can get one from most staffed stations or online via the scheme. We appreciate that if you are already part of this scheme, wearing a face covering may not be possible, so we advise you follow the guidance provided on Gov UK, which can be found here.

If you have a health condition or disability and would like a discreet way of informing our staff that you are exempt from wearing a face covering, please download and print out an assistance card to present to our staff on your journey.

Seat Reservation FAQs

How can I make a seat reservation? +

Customers will receive a seat reservation when they purchase their tickets online or at a station. However, for customers who already hold a valid ticket, a reservation can be made as per below: For any journeys in the future, please use one of the four options below:
  1. Call our Customer Relations team on 03447 369 123 (Option 3) Opening Hours: 8am to 4pm, 7 days a week
  2. E-mail Customer Relations on customer.relations@crosscountrytrains.co.uk
  3. Contact our Social Media team on Facebook viaCrossCountry Trains on Facebook or Twitter @crosscountryuk available 24/7
  4. Any staffed station
  5. For on the day reservations only, please use our Ten Minute Reservation service.

What if I already have a reservation? +

If you have received a reservation when purchasing a ticket, you should stick to your booked train and seat. If you would like to change your reservation, please get in touch with the ticket retailer with whom you made your purchase.

I’m travelling with my family. Do we have to reserve individual seats or can we travel together?+

You should still try to reserve, as on busier trains we could need to restrict travel if too many people attempt to board. However, if you are travelling as a family group then you may sit together if you wish instead of following social distancing. Only window seats are reservable so the seat next to you should always be free for a household member to sit next to you.

Will reservations just be available in a single carriage? +

All carriages will have reservable seats (apart from coach B on Voyagers and Turbostars). We ask that you avoid moving around, and if you haven’t reserved, then to use any available window seat and use our Ten Minute Reservation (TMR) service to make a reservation on that train.

I have a season ticket/local authority travel card /SWIFT card. Can I still just get on any train? +

We are asking Season ticket holders and those with travelcards to also make a reservation in advance. For any journeys in the future, please use one of the four options below:

    1. Call our Customer Relations team on 03447 369 123 (Option 3) Opening Hours: 8am to 4pm, 7 days a week
    2. E-mail Customer Relations on customer.relations@crosscountrytrains.co.uk
    3. Contact our Social Media team on twitter@crosscountryuk available 24/7
    4. Any staffed station
    5. For on the day reservations only, please use our Ten Minute Reservation service.

As I don’t know what time I’ll finish work how can I reserve a seat for my journey home? +

You can reserve on the day with us by using the Ten-Minute Reservation service (TMR). Details can be found here.

My previous train was delayed so I couldn’t catch the one I was reserved on+

If your train was delayed then please speak to a member of station staff who will endorse your ticket to travel on the next CrossCountry train.

Once your ticket has been endorsed, you will need a seat reservation. To make a seat reservation on the next train, please use our TMR service.

If you have missed your booked train, and the reason wasn’t related to the railway, e.g. traffic on your way to the station, then you will need to purchase a brand new ticket.

Can I still book a place for my wheelchair?+

Yes. Please contact our Passenger Assist Team as normal and they will be happy to help with the arrangements and any support you would like on your journey. To book travel assistance, please contact the Passenger Assist team on: Call us on 08000309224 or Textphone us on 0800 0309230 Our opening hours are: 8am to 4pm, 7 days a week. Alternatively you can e-mail us on assistance@crosscountrytrains.co.uk For any other enquires please contact us at ticketing@crosscountrytrains.co.uk.

At the station

Please note that CrossCountry do not manage any stations, so for advice and travel guidance for the station you intend to visit, please search for your station here.

Arrive early - Allow plenty of time at the station before your train arrives, as there may be directional signage and queuing systems in place.

Please keep your distance when parking - Please note, we do not manage any station car parks. However, our advice is try to park at a distance from other cars where possible.

Face coverings – It is mandatory to wear a face covering when passing through a railway station as well as when travelling by train. Face coverings can be removed only whilst food & drink is being consumed. To make your journey safer, maximum fines of £6,400 are being issued by British Transport Police to people who do not wear a face covering. While some people are exempt, everyone else must do so to protect others. See our FAQs. See our FAQs

Social distancing - When walking through the station please respect other people around you. Always maintaining social distancing measures, including when using escalators, lifts and seating at stations.

Health and hygiene – Please always carry hand sanitiser to use before and after your journey. Hand sanitiser can be purchased from the catering trolley on-board, if available, if your train does not have a catering trolley, please ask one of our colleagues who will be able to help you further. We also ask that you wash your hands both before and after travelling with us. To find out more about availability of hand sanitisers please visit the station information page here.

Respectful behaviour - Please respect station colleagues, who are there to help and guide you through your onward journey.

Station colleagues - Please remember our teams at stations and on-board our trains are not responsible for the enforcement of social distancing. So please work with us, be mindful of your fellow passengers, and take sensible steps to keep a safe distance.

On the train

Buy your ticket in advance, and reserve a seat. - To help us maintain social distancing on-board our services, please book before you travel, and reserve your seat. We are not currently selling tickets on-board our trains. You can make a seat reservation when booking directly via our website, mobile site or Train Tickets app. At the point of purchase, you will receive a reservation which will include your coach and seat number.

Full services – If there is no available space on the train when it arrives, you must disembark and wait for the next service to arrive. If this is the last service of the day, please contact us and we will be able to arrange alternative transport.

Follow the signage - There is additional signage on all our trains to remind you and fellow passengers to 'stay safe and stay apart', throughout your journey.

Social distancing - Please keep your distance from other customers and our colleagues. It is important to stick to your reserved seat on-board to help us maintain our social distancing processes.

Face coverings - It is mandatory to wear a face covering on-board our trains at all times, except for when consuming food and drink. Maximum fines of £6,400 are being issued by British Transport Police to people who do not wear a face covering. While some people are exempt, everyone else must do so to protect others. See our FAQs

Catering - Catering is available on-board our services. To keep our customers and colleagues safe, catering will be provided from a static location at one end of the train. On-board colleagues will make regular announcements to let customers know when and where to find our catering trolley.

We have reintroduced our at-seat service in First Class which will comply with social distancing measures. Please note, we only have a limited range of products at the moment.

Customers are welcome to bring their own food and drinks on-board and face coverings can be removed only whilst food & drink is being consumed. If you are travelling with us in Wales, please note that under current guidelines you cannot consume food and drink on-board..

Health and hygiene - Always carry hand sanitiser, ensure you wash your hands before and after your journey and do not touch your face throughout your journey. Hand sanitiser can be purchased from the catering trolley on-board, if available. If your train does not have a catering trolley, please ask one of our colleagues who will be able to help you further. We are only accepting contactless payments on-board for the safety of both our customers and colleagues.

Boarding the train - Stand well clear of the doors and allow others to leave the train with a safe distance before you board. We have added additional dwell time where possible at busier stations to give you and other customers enough time to board safely.

Avoid busier times of travel - Please consider booking to travel with us at quieter times of the day if it is possible for you to do so. Our dedicated ‘traffic light’ page shows how busy reservations have been over the last week, so you are able to choose quieter times to travel here.

Cleaning our trains - We have enhanced our cleaning regimes and are now spending an additional 2400 hours each week cleaning our trains, especially focussing on the main touchpoints such as door buttons and hand rails. We have also increased the frequency of deep cleans. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you feel the service you are on was not up to standard. You can find the best means of contacting us here.

What we're doing

Following the latest Government guidance - We continue to follow the latest Government guidelines to ensure we take the appropriate actions to keep you safe. We're proud to have been awarded the 'We're good to go' accreditation from Visit Britain, meaning we provide a COVID-safe environment for you on-board our trains.

Reducing contact when handling payments - We are encouraging our customers to use contactless payments only and where possible purchase an e-Ticket or use a Smart card for Season tickets.

Please check payment options at the station you are visiting, please visit the station information page here.

Promoting good personal hygiene - We are selling hand sanitiser from our catering trolley on-board, subject to availability. If your train does not have a catering trolley, please ask one of our colleagues who will be able to help you.

Enhanced cleaning -We have reviewed the work of our train maintenance and cleaning contractors to ensure all trains go through a deep clean process at the end of each day, with regular cleaning throughout service.

We have increased staffing levels to help keep our trains clean during the day and our on-board cleaners clean the equivalent of 264 football pitches every day.

We have introduced more frequent walk-throughs to clean surfaces on a more regular basis and have ensured our team are fully aware of the importance of maintaining good hygiene themselves.

Social distancing - We have installed additional on-board signage reminding you and other customers to ‘stay safe and stay apart’.

Reserving a seat - We have listened to your feedback and re-introduced seat reservations. For all journeys from Monday 7 September, we are asking you to book before you travel and reserve a seat on the train to help us maintain social distancing on-board. For more information, please visit our reservations FAQs.

 

General FAQs

Wish to travel on a different day? +

For all tickets purchased with CrossCountry using our website, mobile site or Train Tickets app. If you wish to change your ticket we would ask you to self-serve using your online account. If for any reason you are unable to do this please contact us at sales.support.crosscountry@trainsfares.co.uk or seasons.crosscountry@trainsfares.co.uk using the subject line in your e-mail “Change my journey” with the details of when you would like to travel. Alternatively you can call our web support team on 0371 244 2389, Mon-Fri 0800 - 1600.

Applying for a refund +

For all tickets purchased with CrossCountry using our website, mobile site or Train Tickets app we would ask you to apply for a refund using your online account.

If for any reason you are unable to request a refund from your online account, please e-mail our Web Support team on sales.support.crosscountry@trainsfares.co.uk or seasons.crosscountry@trainsfares.co.uk for Season tickets.

Alternatively, you can call our Web Support team on 0371 244 2389, Monday to Friday 08.00 to 16.00.

Please note, refunds can take up to 5 working days to process once received by our team.

From Monday 7 September for tickets purchased direct with CrossCountry on our website, mobile site, Train Tickets app or Seasons site the usual £10 admin fee was reinstated to all refunds. Please note Advance train tickets are non-refundable. For peace of mind when buying an Advance train ticket direct with CrossCountry online, we recommend logging in to your account when you buy, where you will be able to change your journey without paying an admin fee.

You can request a refund up to 28 days after your ticket expires.

Season tickets can be refunded at any time, but there must be at least seven days remaining on a monthly or longer Season ticket, or at least three days remaining on a weekly Season ticket to obtain a refund. Refunds are not pro-rata as the unit cost of a Season ticket decreases as the period of validity increases. Annual Season tickets have little to no refund value if they have been used for more than 10 months, 12 days.

For more information and to see how much you could get back for your Season ticket, visit the National Rail website and use the Season Ticket Refund Calculator tool.

If you have a paper ticket and wish to make a refund please contact our Web Support team on the above e-mail addresses only and they will provide directions on how to process. This will include a photograph of your paper ticket cut diagonally in half.

Please note; these terms and conditions still apply in areas under ‘local lockdown’

I have a National Rail Travel Voucher that has expired since 17 March 2020, am I still going to be able to use it? +

Any Rail Travel Voucher that has an expiry date between 17 March 2020 and 16 September 2020, may be accepted for a maximum of 6 months after the original expiry date e.g. an Rail Travel Voucher that expires on 10 June 2020, may continue to be accepted up to and including 9 December 2020.

I am a Railcard holder, will I receive a refund or an extension, to reflect the period I was unable to travel? +

After careful consideration, the government has confirmed that Railcards will remain non-refundable and will not be extended.

The area I’m travelling to/from/through is under local lockdown, can I get a refund? +

Our usual refund measures apply, please see ‘Applying for a Refund’ above on how to get a refund if you do not want to travel.

I want to get through a locked down area quickly, can I board any service to do this? +

There has been no change to ticket restrictions involving locations affected by local lockdown measures. You should travel on the service you have booked, and if this involves a connection through an area with local restrictions, your journey won’t be affected.

Do I need to do anything differently in an area currently under local lockdown? +

No, all of the travel guidelines outlined on this page apply, and we ask you to ensure you follow the guidelines for your safety, and others.

For all other queries +

If you have any other queries that do not relate to an existing booking our Customer Relations team are here to help. To achieve social distancing, and with the challenges of Coronavirus, our Customer Relations telephone lines are now open Monday - Friday 08:00 – 20:00. Passenger Assistance telephone lines will be open Monday - Friday 08:00 - 17:00.

Please remember, you can also use our online contact forms to get in touch at any time - for Customer Relations please use the form here and for Passenger Assistance please use the form here.

 

Face covering FAQs

What constitutes a face covering? +

The Government’s instructions state that a face covering is a cloth that should “cover your mouth and nose while allowing you to breathe comfortably. It can be as simple as a scarf or bandana that ties behind the head.”

Where does this apply – just on trains or in stations too? +

We want people to wear face coverings from when they enter a station all the way through their journey, including exiting the station at the other end. If people are then moving onto the bus, tram or tube, they should avoid taking off their face covering while they interchange to avoid touching their face or mouth unnecessarily.

Can I take my face covering off when I cross the border into Scotland or Wales? +

People should wear face coverings on our trains, wherever they are. This is mandatory in England and Scotland, and will be mandatory in Wales from 27 July.

For more information, and to ensure you are adhering to the guidelines if you are travelling across the border, please see the current government guidance for England, Scotland and Wales.

What do I do with my face covering when I am finished with it? +

We encourage passengers to use reusable face coverings where possible as these are better for the environment. If you have a disposable face covering then please take it home to dispose of it or put it in the normal bins available on stations at the end of your journey.

What should I do if I’m sitting in a carriage with someone who isn’t wearing a face covering? +

We are confident that the vast majority of people are going to want to do the right thing and help protect others by bringing and wearing a face covering while in stations and on trains. Please also be aware that some passengers may not be able to wear as mask due to medical issues. Regardless of whether someone is wearing a mask, people should keep their distance – at least two metres, if possible.

What about a long-distance service where people are on the train for hours, will this apply there? +

Yes. For example, the wearing of face coverings is already mandatory on Eurostar trains.

Do children require face coverings? +

Children under 11 are not required to wear face coverings.

Are you doing this just to reduce the need for social distancing? +

No. We are doing this to further reduce the risk of infection. Used properly, face coverings can help prevent the spread of the disease. Social distancing and good hand hygiene are still very important.

What if I can’t wear a face covering for medical reasons or due to a disability? +

You can still use public transport. We want people to be able to travel with dignity and our staff will act considerately towards those who cannot wear a mask due to their disability.

The requirement to wear a face covering also does not apply if you have a reasonable excuse not to. Reasonable excuses include:

    • if you have a physical or mental illness or impairment, or a disability that means you cannot put on, wear or remove a face covering.
    • if putting on, wearing or removing a face covering would cause you severe distress.
    • if you are travelling with, or providing assistance to, someone who relies on lip reading to communicate.
    • if you are travelling to avoid injury or escape the risk of harm, and you do not have a face covering with you
    • if you need to remove it during your journey to avoid harm or injury or the risk of harm or injury to yourself or others
    • if you need to eat, drink, or take medication you can remove your face covering
    • if you are asked to remove your face covering by a police officer or other official, for example to check your railcard.

Our colleagues are also aware of the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower scheme, and will be able to offer assistance when required. For more information on being exempt from wearing a face covering, please visit the Gov UK website here.

What do rail staff do to make sure people wear face coverings on trains? +

Rail staff engage and educate customers about the mandatory use of face coverings when they travel by train and encourage people to wear them. The vast majority of people do the right thing and help protect others by bringing and wearing a face covering while in stations and on trains. Unless they have a good reason, those that don’t wear a face covering could receive a maximum fine of £6,400 from the British Transport Police.

Why are people allowed on my train without face coverings? +

Some people may not be able to wear a face covering due to medical conditions which may not always be apparent. Please do not confront other passengers. Anyone that isn’t exempt from wearing a face covering can be issued with a £6,400 maximum fine from the British Transport Police.

 

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More information on COVID-19

You can find more information on Coronavirus/COVID-19 and methods to prevent the virus spreading, together with answers to many questions you may have, using the following links:

 

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