Frequently Asked Questions?

Most frequently asked questions

  • Can I use the Railcard to travel anywhere?
    A:

    The Veterans Railcard is valid in England, Wales and Scotland although it doesn't give discounts on Grand Central services.

     

     


  • Can I use my Railcard on any Train Company?
    A:

    The Railcard is not accepted on Grand Central services.

    Special excursions and charters are excluded.


  • How do I renew my Veterans Railcard?
    A:

    You can renew your Veterans Railcard online when it’s within 30 days of its expiry date . 

    To renew, please click’ Renew my Railcard’ on the website homepage to log in to your account. Once logged in, click 'View my Railcard' then click 'Renew card' for 1 year or 3 years and follow the instructions on the screen to complete your renewal.


  • Can I buy a Veterans Railcard for another person?
    A:

    Yes, you can buy a Veterans Railcard for another person as long as they are eligible. You will need to supply the evidence to prove their eligibility. You will also need to provide one passport-style photo of yourself and one of your named companion (if required).

    To order the Railcard, click ‘Buy Now’ on the website homepage to get started, then select ‘Buy 1 Year £30’ or ‘Buy 3 Year £70’ to continue. When you get to ‘Enter your details’ page, under ‘This Railcard is for’ section, select ‘Someone else’ and follow the instructions on the street to complete your purchase.


  • How quickly will I get my new Veterans Railcard?
    A:

    Please note that it can take up to 5 working days to process your application.

    If you have ordered a digital Veterans Railcard, once your application has been approved, it will be available to download on your device and use straight away. A download code will be sent to your registered email address, along with instructions on how to download your Railcard. Please click here for the step by step guide on how to add a digital Railcard to your device.

    If you have ordered a plastic Veterans Railcard, please allow up to 5 working days for delivery. If you paid for ‘Special Delivery’ and placed your order before 17:00pm, your Veterans Railcard is guaranteed to be delivered before 13:00pm the next working day (Monday to Thursday). If your Veterans Railcard was order on Friday or Saturday before 11:00am, it will be delivered the following Monday.


  • Can I use my Railcard for tickets for travel on the London Underground?
    A:

    With your Railcard you can get 1/3 off Anytime Day Travelcard when bought as part of your journey to London from outside London Zones 1-9 (subject to a minimum fare which is currently £19.60).
     
    With an Oyster card, you can get your Railcard discount loaded onto your Oyster card to save 1/3 on single off-peak pay as you go fares on London Underground and Docklands Light Railway services in London. You will need to have registered your Oyster in your name to do this. Simply take your Oyster card and valid Railcard to a London Underground station and ask a member of staff to set the discount for you. You can also get the discount set at Oyster Ticket Shops and Visitor Centres.


  • Can I use my Veterans Railcard at any time of day?
    A:

    Yes, you can. However, a £12 minimum fare applies to all journeys made between 04:30am and 09:59am Monday to Friday, excluding Advance fares, on Public Holidays or throughout July and August.

    If you travel regularly before 10:00am, then a weekly or monthly season ticket may be more appropriate, though you won’t be able to get a Railcard discount.


  • I can’t find my download code
    A:

    Please check your mailbox (including your junk mail) for an email from our Railcard team.

    If you still can’t find it, please click on ‘Manage my Railcard’ on the website homepage to log in to your account. Once logged in, click ‘MY RAILCARD’ then click ‘View my Railcard’ to request a new download code. Your new download code will be generated once you have clicked ‘Get new Download Code’.


  • Can visitors to Britain buy a Railcard online?
    A:

    Yes, you can.

    Simply click 'Buy Now' on the website homepage and follow the instructions on the scress. When you get to ‘Enter your details’ page, please choose ‘Digital Veterans Railcard’.You will need to provide a passport style photo and proof that you are a veteran to continue with your purchase.

    For a list of the accepted proof of eligibility documents click here.

     

     


  • How do I buy my Veterans Railcard?
    A:

    You can buy your Veterans Railcard online or by post.

    To buy online, simply click 'Buy Now' on the website homepage and follow the instructions on the screen.You will need to provide a passport style photo and proof that you are a veteran. For a list of the accepted proof of eligibility documents click here.

    To buy by post, simply download and complete our application form and then post it with a copy of your evidence of eligibility, passport style photo of yourself and your named companion (if applicable) and payment to:

    National Railcards
    PO Box 10776
    Ashby-de-la-Zouch
    LE65 9FA

    Please make cheques and postal orders payable to 'ATOC Ltd Railcard'

    Allow 15 working days* for your Railcard to be delivered.


  • Can I use my Railcard in conjunction with Train Company special offers?
    A:

    Yes. You can use it with the 2FOR1 Days Out Guide promotions and some offers given by train companies. Please note that your Railcard may get you the full 1/3 discount on some Train Company special offers, but many offers include a smaller discount or no discount at all. It's best to ask at your local station for details of a specific offer, or call National Rail Enquiries on 03457 48 49 50.

    Alternatively, you can visit www.nationalrail.co.uk.


  • Can I use my Railcard to buy my ticket on the train rather than at a station?
    A:

    Only if there is no ticket office, or the ticket office is closed and there is no ticket machine available to buy your discounted ticket at the station at which you began your journey.  If this is the case, you can buy your discounted ticket from on train staff.

    Otherwise, if ticket facilities were available at the station you could be charged the full price Standard Single fare.


  • Can I use my Railcard on the date of expiry?
    A:

    Yes. Your Railcard is valid up until and including the date shown on your Railcard.


  • What do I do if my Veterans Railcard is stolen?
    A:

    If your Veterans Railcard has been stolen, you will need to apply for a replacement online.

    To apply for a replacement, please click 'Manage my Railcard' to log in to your account. Once logged in, click 'Replace stolen card' and follow the instructions on the screen. You will need to quote your crime reference number or document given to you by the police to receive a free replacement.

    Until you have your replacement Veterans Railcard, we’re sorry but you will have to pay the full fare. The lost discount is not refundable.


  • What do I do if my Veterans Railcard is lost or damaged?
    A:

    You will need to get a replacement online. You can only apply for a replacement Veterans Railcard 5 days after the date of original purchase.

    To apply for a replacement , please click 'Manage my Railcard' to log in to your account. Once logged in, click 'Replace lost/damage card for £10' and follow the instructions on screen. You will have to pay a £10 administration fee if your Veterans Railcard was lost or damaged.


  • Can I claim a refund if I don't use my Railcard?
    A:

    No. Unfortunately, once a Railcard has been issued it is non-refundable.


  • How do I add a digital Railcard to my phone?
    A:

    If you have already purchased a digital Veterans Railcard, you should have received an email which contains a download code. You will use this download code to add your digital Veterans Railcard on your phone or device.

    First, you will need to download the Railcard app from the Apple Store or the Google Play store. Once downloaded, open the app and tap on the ‘+’ symbol on the ‘Your Railcards’ screen. The ‘Add Railcard’ screen will then show, and you will need to tap on the ‘+’ symbol under ‘Add an existing Railcard’ to enter your download code and add your digital Veterans Railcard.

    Click here for the step by step guide on how to add a digital Railcard to your phone.


  • My download code won’t work
    A:

    Your download code may have expired or been used on too many devices. You can only store your digital Veterans Railcard on a maximum of 2 devices, so you will need to remove it from an existing device to add it to a new one.

    Please click ‘Manage my Railcard’ on the website homepage to log in to your account. Once logged in, click ‘MY RAILCARD’ then click 'View my Railcard'. You now need to click 'Remove' under 'Registered Devices' to remove one device. Once you have done this, click ‘Get new Download Code’ to request a new download code to add your Veterans Railcard to a new device.

    If the problem persists, please contact the customer services team on 0345 301 1656.


  • What is this download code?
    A:

    The download code allows you to add a purchased Railcard to the Railcard app. The download code is found within the email confirmation you would have received after we have approved your Railcard application.

    Please note that the Railcard app is available to download from the Apple Store and the Google Play store.


  • What happens if I lose my device?
    A:

    If you lose the device where your digital Veterans Railcard was downloaded, you will need to log in to account and remove it from the lost device.

    Simply click ‘Manage my Railcard’ on the top right of the website homepage to log in to your account. Once logged in, click ‘MY RAILCARD’ then click ‘View my Railcard’. Under ‘Registered Devices’ click ‘Remove’ next to the device you want to remove. Once you have done this, click ‘Get new Download Code’ to request a new download code to add your Veterans Railcard to a new device.


  • How can I remove my Railcard from an existing device?
    A:

    Simply click ‘Manage my Railcard’ on the top right of the website homepage to log in to your account. Once logged in, click ‘MY RAILCARD’ then click ‘View my Railcard’. Under ‘Registered Devices’ click ‘Remove’ next to the device you want to remove. Once you have done this, click ‘Get new Download Code’ to request a new download code to add your Veterans Railcard to a new device.


  • Why can’t I add my Veterans Railcard to another device?
    A:

    You may have already stored your digital Veterans Railcard on 2 devices. Please note that you can only store your Veterans Railcard on a maximum of 2 devices, so you will need to remove it from an existing device to add it to a new one.

    Simply click ‘Manage my Railcard’ on the top right of the website homepage to log in to your account. Once logged in, click ‘MY RAILCARD’ then click ‘View my Railcard’. Under ‘Registered Devices’ click ‘Remove’ next to the device you want to remove. Once you have done this, click ‘Get new Download Code’ to request a new download code to add your Veterans Railcard to a new device.


  • What happens if I have no battery or can’t show my Railcard?
    A:

    If you don’t have any battery life, or have forgotten your device, it won't be possible to check that your Railcard discount is valid.

    You could be asked to buy a single ticket for your journey, or be issued with a Penalty Fare.

    If you do get caught out while travelling, you can make one claim a year to be refunded for any extra fare or penalty you incur.

    For a list of train companies in Great Britain, and their details, click here.


  • Can I have a plastic and digital version of my Railcard?
    A:

    Unfortunately, you can only have one version of your Railcard – either plastic or digital. Once you have purchased your Railcard you cannot change the type of Railcard you have.


  • I am having trouble uploading my photo for my Railcard – what can I do?
    A:

    We're sorry that you've experienced problems whilst uploading a photograph. There can be a number of causes of this - some of which are difficult to diagnose. We’ve compiled a list of trouble-shooting tips that you can try before contacting us:

     

    • Retry the photo upload. Close your web browser before restarting it and logging in again

     

    • Enable Javascript on your web browser. Your web browser may be configured in a way that it makes uploading the photo more difficult (such as. having the Javascript disabled).  Please check your settings and ensure that Javascript is enabled

     

    • Make sure you have up-to-date web browser software. Although our website supports the top browsers (such as Internet Explorer, Chrome, Safari, Mozilla Firefox and Opera), some older versions of these browsers are more likely to cause problems uploading image files to our website. Try updating your web browser to the latest version, or try a different web browser/computer

     

    • Make sure your image is 5 megabytes (5Mb) in size or less. We accept images up to 5Mb in size but the smaller the file the better - it will take less time to transfer to our servers. Crop your photograph before uploading and/or reduce the quality but be careful - the picture still needs to be clear enough to print on the Railcard

     

    • Check that your internet service provider (ISP) is not experiencing problems. These are often difficult to detect but if other websites are unusually slow (especially noticeable when downloading images), then your ISP may be having network issues or might be congested. You may want to check with your ISP by visiting their 'service status' webpage

     

    If you have done all of the above and are still experiencing problems, then please call us on 0346 301 1656.


  • How can I change my address details if I am an online Railcard customer?
    A:

    Please click on ‘Manage my Railcard’ on the top right of the website homepage to log in to your account. Once logged in, please click on ‘MY RAILCARD’ then click on ‘Update addresses’ to change your address.

     


  • I wear a burka or a niqab – will I have to show my face in the photograph?
    A:

    All customers must provide a photograph. The photo should have been taken with nothing covering the outline of eyes, nose or mouth. The rail industry applies the same rules as the DVLA and Passport Agency, so photos with a person wearing a full facial burka / niqab (a veil that covers the face) are not acceptable. If a member of rail staff is unable to validate that the person on your Railcard is you, the Train Companies reserve the right to charge you the full price Standard Single fare for your journey as if no ticket was purchased before starting the journey and in some cases a Penalty Fare.


  • I couldn’t show my Railcard on a journey and have been issued a full fare! What can I do?
    A:

    If you get caught out while travelling, you can make one claim a year, to be compensated for a penalty you’ve incurred. To do this, you will need to visit the website of the train company who issued the penalty and contact their customer service centre.

    Please click here for the list of all train companies in Great Britain and their contact details.


  • I haven't received my download code yet
    A:

    Please click ‘Manage my Railcard’ on the top right of the website homepage to log in to your account. Once logged in, click ‘MY RAILCARD’ then click ‘View my Railcard’ to request a new download code. Your new download code will be generated once you have click ‘Get new Download Code’.

    If you are still having issues with your code, please contact us on 0346 301 1656.


  • Why doesn’t my download code work
    A:

     

    Your download code may have expired or been used on too many devices. You can only store your Veterans Railcard on a maximum of 2 devices, so you will need to remove it from an existing device to add it to a new one.

    You will need to click ‘Manage my Railcard’ on the top right of the website homepage to log in to your account. Once logged in, click ‘MY RAILCARD’ then click ‘View my Railcard’ to request a new download code. Your new download code will be generated once you have click ‘Get new Download Code’.

     


  • Who can buy a Veterans Railcard?
    A:

    The Veterans Railcard is for former members of the UK armed forces. You may also be entitled to apply for a Veterans Railcard if you have served as a Reservist or in the Territorial Army (TA) or have served as a Merchant Mariner and seen duty on legally defined military operations.

    You will need to prove your eligibilty. Please see here for more details on the documents you will need to provide to prove your eligiblity criteria.


  • Can I get a refund or extension if I have been unable to use my Railcard during lockdown?
    A:

    Unfortunately no. After careful consideration, the government has confirmed to us that Railcards will remain non-refundable and will not be extended. Refunding or extending Railcards would come at a significant cost to the taxpayer, at a time when the focus must be on maintaining rail services to support the country’s recovery from the pandemic. Please rest assured that this decision hasn’t been taken lightly and was made at the highest level.


  • How much is a Veterans Railcard?
    A:

    A 1-year Railcard costs £30.

    A 3-year Railcard costs £70.


  • What happens if I don’t have reception or I am offline?
    A:

    Railcard are available offline for a period of up to 72 hours. The Railcard app on your device will continue to show your digital Railcard as long as your mobile device has connected to the internet at some point within the last 72 hours. However, you will need an internet connection to buy your digital Railcard or add it to a new device.


  • How do I unblock my Railcard?
    A:

    You will need to contact our customer support team on 0345 301 1656  so that we can better understand the activity that has caused your Veteran Railcard to be blocked.

    If appropriate, they will be able to unblock your Veteran Railcard for further use. 


  • Why would the taxpayers have to pay for a Railcard refund or extension?
    A:

    Due to the pandemic far fewer people have been travelling by train. This means that the government is offering additional financial backing to the rail industry so that services keep running to support the economy.


  • Can I use my Railcard to buy tickets for other people?
    A:

    Yes. You as the cardholder can buy tickets for your named companion and up to four children as long as they are travelling with you.

    Discounted price tickets purchased by a Veterans Railcard holder should be issued for travel for the same origin and destination and should normally be of the same ticket type (example all Off-Peak Returns). 


  • What is an acceptable image to use for my Railcard photograph?
    A:

    The image should be a good recognisable likeness of you.

    We prefer colour pictures but black and white images are acceptable. Your head and shoulders should be in close-up, with your face clearly visible and filling approximately 70% of the frame (in the same way it would for a passport or driving licence). The image must be in sharp focus.

    Please make sure that your face is not obscured by hats or hair.

    The file of your photo must be either a .jpg, .bmp, or a .gif and must not exceed 5MB with a resolution of at least 300dpi. We will reject photos if they are not appropriate and ask you for a more suitable image.


  • Is my phone compatible for a digital Railcard?
    A:

    The Railcard App is available to download from the Apple Store and the Google Play store.

    The App is only compatible with devices that have the following software: Apple iOS 10 and above and Android 4.1 and above.

    The Railcard app is not compatible with Windows Phones.


  • Why can’t the train companies pay for the extension?
    A:

    Due to the pandemic fewer people have been travelling by train. Funding is currently being used to keep services running to support the economy. 


  • Can I use the Railcard in Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland?
    A:

    Railcards can be used for rail discounts in the area known as Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales). They cannot be used for rail travel in either Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland.

    If you live in the Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland you can buy a Railcard to use for travelling in Scotland, Wales or England. For more information on concessionary rail travel schemes in Northern Ireland please see www.translink.co.uk  or the Republic of Ireland please see www.irishrail.ie.


  • Can I buy a Railcard at a rail station?
    A:

    No. The Veterans Railcard is only available to purchase online via our website or via our postal service.


  • What happens if I don't have my Railcard with me and I have to buy a new ticket or pay a Penalty Fare?
    A:

    If you are travelling by train on a ticket with a Railcard discount, you must travel with your valid Railcard. If you forget your phone or don't have your Railcard you will either be required to buy a new ticket or you may on certain services be liable for a Penalty Fare. However, a train company will normally allow you to claim back this extra expense on the first occasion in each year where this happens.

    Each train company will have their own process for doing this. You will need to provide proof of your Railcard and either the original and additional tickets that you have purchased, or if you have not yet paid, details of the notice to pay or notice of Penalty Fare. Where you have already paid for additional tickets you should contact the relevant train company’s customer services department; in the case of a notice to pay or notice of Penalty Fare, you should follow the instructions included on how to challenge or appeal the charge.


  • Why is the title "Mx" not available when I come to make payment?
    A: If you have given your title as "Mx" during the application process then this will be shown on your Railcard and in all correspondence that we have with you. However, the secure payment process is delivered by our Payment Provider and we are only able to offer the range of titles that it provides.

  • I am getting the message "Internal Server Error" during the application process. What can I do?
    A:

    The “Internal Server Error” message is a generic error message which relates to issues to do with the way your browser is interfacing with the Railcard website. Sometimes this problem can occur if you are using compatibility mode in Internet Explorer (versions IE10 and lower). 

    In Internet Explorer 10 you can click the compatibility mode button to switch it on or off.

    In Internet Explorer 11 there is no compatibility mode button so to access the Compatibility settings you will need to click on the Settings icon. In the menu that is subsequently displayed you will find “Compatibility View Settings” – click this. In the Settings panel that displays, make sure that railcard.co.uk is not the box entitled, “Websites you’ve added to compatibility view”.  If it is please click on the entry and click the remove button, then click to close it.


  • What methods of payment are accepted?
    A:

    We accept online payment via credit and debit cards. The cards accepted are: Visa, Visa Debit, Visa Electron, MasterCard, MasterCard Debit, Maestro and Solo.

    We cannot accept American Express or Diner's Club.


  • Will I receive the Railcard discount on any chargeable items I take on the train with me?
    A:

    The Railcard discount does not cover charges on various articles or animals.

    For details about which items carry a charge, and details of the charges, please call National Rail Enquiries on 03457 48 49 50


  • Can I get a discount on Season tickets and period Travelcards with a Railcard?
    A: No, we’re sorry but the Railcard gives no discount on these types of ticket.

  • Can I reserve my seat if booking a ticket in advance?
    A:

    Yes, providing that there are reservations available on the service on which you are travelling. Many train companies will allow you to reserve a seat free of charge on longer distance journeys.

    Please check with the local ticket office staff before buying tickets.




Can't find an answer? 

If the answer to your question is not in the above or you are having problems purchasing your Railcard, you can contact us

Train Companies

If you have any questions concerning rail ticket prices or journey planning National Rail Enquiries will be happy to help you.

If you have any comments about a specific rail journey please contact the train company that provides the service. To find their contact details see the list of Train Operating Companies