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Canny Britons are beating the recession by snapping up cheap rail deals, according to research published today by budget rail service megatrain.com.
Latest statistics show that megatrain.com passenger bookings are up more than 100% on the same time last year when the economic downturn started to take hold in the UK.
megatrain.com, part of transport giant Stagecoach Group, offers fares from just £1* to around 30 locations on the UK rail network.
Around 9,000 passengers a week are now travelling on a megatrain.com ticket on South West Trains, East Midlands Trains and Virgin Trains services – up 104% on 2008 and annual numbers are on track to reach 500,000.
Some 2,000 cheap seats are available through the megabus.com online booking engine every day, with customers paying on average 30% less than last year.
Brian Souter, Stagecoach Group Chief Executive, said: “We have seen a huge growth in demand for budget rail deals over the past 12 months – and megatrain.com is taking double the bookings we did a year ago. Despite the recession, people are still looking to travel and they are searching for the best bargains.
“Families in particular are watching every penny to keep the costs down, with many choosing ‘staycation’ breaks. More people are getting even better low-cost fares with megatrain.com, which is helping to keep Britain moving in the tough economy.”
megatrain.com offers travel to some of the country’s biggest destinations, including London, Birmingham, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Derby, Sheffield, Nottingham, Leicester, Peterborough, Bristol, Bournemouth, Portsmouth and Southampton.
Last month, megatrain.com doubled the number of seats available on routes from Portsmouth and Southampton to London to meet the growing demand for greener low-cost travel.
More than 80% of passengers using Stagecoach’s South West Trains and East Midlands Trains services travel on a discounted ticket.
Stagecoach Group also operates the market-leading budget inter-city coach service megabus.com, which connects around 40 destinations across the UK and carries more than two million passengers a year.
Bargain-hunters can also use megabusplus.com, the UK’s first budget coach-rail service. It offers passengers a fast, integrated journey between Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and London by comfortable coach and high-quality train.
All services are available through one integrated budget travel website, allowing customers to access both coach and rail options in one easy search. The online retailing system gives visitors access to around 500 daily departures to more than 50 locations across the UK from just £1*.
For further information go to www.megatrain.com, www.megabus.com or www.megabusplus.com.