Rail to compete with budget flights from London to Edinburgh

It’s a race between land and air as a train operator wants to go head to head against budget airlines with the launch of a speedy and low-cost rail service between London and Edinburgh.

Train on Edinburgh line

Train to Edinburgh line at King's Cross, London Image by Train Photos / CC BY 2.0

FirstGroup which currently has a number of train franchises across the UK says that their on-board customers would have free wi-fi, catering and low fares on their new single class trains which they envisage would run five times daily between the English and Scottish capitals.

The Daily Telegraph reports that while FirstGroup have not yet give a fare scale for the project, they guarantee that it will be “highly competitive with budget air carriers”.

The group’s aim to is tempt passengers away from flying on a route where at present two out of every three trips are done by plane.

The submission for track access has been lodged with the Office of Rail Regulation, and if it is given the green light, the company hope to introduce the new service within three years.

The time frame for the rail journey is four-and-a-half hours

FirstGroup’s chief executive, Tim O’Toole, said they planned to give passenger an alternative to flying.

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