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Five easy ways to ensure we all travel with confidence on Grand Central

Grand Central train carriage being cleaned

JUST like us at Grand Central you’re probably starting to allow yourself a little excitement at the prospect of planning some post-lockdown leisure activity this summer.

While it looks like we may soon be rid of the ‘stay at home’ rule which has kept us all stuck to our sofas and box sets since January, we and our fellow train operators are working hard to make sure you feel safe when you step back on board our trains with your friends and family.

Did you know that according to the Rail Safety & Standards Board (RSSB), going by train carries the lowest chance of catching COVID, at well below one per cent, compared to other long-distance forms of travel – even your car?

All very reassuring, but that pleasing little fact is only made possible if we all work together as train operator and passenger.  So if it’s all about working together what exactly are we doing at Grand Central and what do we need you to do as we prepare to welcome you back on board?


Yes, they’re a pain but we’re all sort of used to them now so please don’t forget to bring your face covering. Our staff will be covered-up for your safety and we really need you to do the same. If you think you may be exempt from wearing a face covering you can visit the Government’s website, where you’ll find information on where you’ll need to cover up, when you don’t need to and even how to make your own.

Reserve your seat

When Grand Central returns return this weekend you’ll need a ticket and seat reservation before you travel (more on tickets later). It’s really important that we‘re able to maintain social distancing on board, so we‘ve created a seating plan which works for you and your fellow travellers. 

Your seat reservation will be made automatically when you book direct through our website. Our site also has information on which of our services have more availability.

If you prefer you can call our customer relations team on 0345 603 4852 who’ll help you book up to five minutes before departure.  

Go digital

While trying to maintain a comfortable social distance on board, it’s likely that a member of our on-board team will need to check your ticket during your journey. You can avoid physical tickets by booking online with us before you arrive at the station and you’ll receive a scannable bar code direct to your phone or tablet. If you do have a paper ticket, our conductor can punch it without having to take it from you.   

Breathe easy

Here’s something not a lot of passengers know; many long-distance trains, including all of Grand Central’s, are equipped with air replacement systems. The technology means that the air in your carriage is continually being expelled while fresh air is brought in from outside. In fact, in less than nine minutes the air in your carriage will be completely replenished.

Keeping it clean

Throughout your journey, and each time your train reaches its destination, you can expect to see members of the GC team spraying and wiping all the surfaces which are prone to contact. Grab-rails, door handles, table-tops and our bathroom facilities are all regularly cleaned to keep you safe, as part of our boosted hygiene regime.

Grand Central is part of Visit Britain’s Good To Go scheme which guarantees our procedures are updated and in-line with the latest government COVID-19 advice.  We also hold the Safe Travels stamp from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), providing you with the confidence that Grand Central’s anti-COVID measures are aligned with WTTC’s Safe Travels Protocols

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