Glasgow to Edinburgh by train

How to take the fastest trains from Glasgow to Edinburgh

Taking the train to Edinburgh from Glasgow is little different to taking a local train, as the journey takes less than 50 minutes.
So you can be spontaneous and turn up at the station, book a ticket(s) and then just hop on board.
Though the trains between the cities take one of three routes, and this option of the trains which depart from the upper level at Queen Street station and travel via Falkirk, is the one to target, as it is fastest.



From Glasgow Queen Street to Edinburgh Waverley

Travel Information

Final Destination: Edinburgh Waverley

All trains also call at: Haymarket

If the end point of your journey is at the western end of Edinburgh city centre, you can save time by leaving the train at Haymarket station.
Also leave the train in Haymarket if you'll be connecting to destinations in Fife including Dunfermline and Kirkcaldy.

Four good reasons for taking the train from Glasgow
(1) The stations at both ends of the route have fantastic city center locations.
(2) The ticketing is uncomplicated, so you won't lose out by booking at the station just before boarding.
(3) The trains are new and rather smart!
(4) No need to worry about departure and arrival times as there are two trains every hour between the two cities.
So the lack of seat reservations won't be a problem at all.
At exceptionally busy times, you can simply hang back and await the next departure thereby ensuring that you can take your pick of the seats on the next train.

Monday to Friday
2 to 4 x trains per hour
The more frequent service is typically available between 07:15 and 19:00

Saturday and Sunday
2 to 4 x trains per hour
The more frequent service is typically available between 09:00 and 18:00


Book Early and Save: No

ScotRail does not place discounted Advance tickets on sale for train journeys from Glasgow to Edinburgh, so you will pay the same price per departure whether you book ahead online, or purchase tickets at the station just prior to boarding.

Though you can save money by travelling at less busy times when Off-Peak tickets will be available, so on this route you can save money by not departing from  Glasgow between 16:20 and 18:20 when Mondays to Fridays are working days.
Because if you do depart Glasgow at those times only the more expensive type of Anytime tickets will be available.

However, if you book an Off-Peak return to Edinburgh and then do want to leave there between between 16:20 and 18:20, you won't have to have to buy a completely new ticket.
Take your ticket into the Travel Office at Waverley station and you purchase a surcharge, which costs around £3.50.

ScotRail offers ticketing deals when Adults travel with children or in groups, but there's no need to book ahead online to obtain these discounts, you will be charged the same prices when booking these ticket at the station just before boarding - though if you so it can be less confusing to book in person at a ticket counter, rather than using a ticket machine.

Where to book
Ticket Provider Approximate Cost
ScotRail *

ScotRail Guide

On this journey

Good to Know

Edinburgh and Glasgow are two of Scotland's seven cities, but despite that this route isn't part of ScotRail's Inter7City network.

What's also worth being aware of is that these 'express' services aren't the only trains available between Glasgow and Edinburgh.
So in order to make the journey in the fastest possible time, target these trains which depart from the main concourse at Queen Street station and travel via Falkirk.

Avoid trains which travel on slower routes via Bathgate, or Cumbernauld or Shotts.

Though if you'll be travelling on to Edinburgh by initially taking a train which arrives at Glasgow Central station, you'll have an easier journey if you connect into one of the fairly frequent trains which travel to the Scottish capital from that station.
Though if you'll be commencing a journey in Glasgow city centre, head to Queen Street station in order to take these trains.

Though there are trains on slower routes to Edinburgh which depart from High Street station (close by one of the University of Strathyclyde's main campuses) and from Charing Cross station, which is at the western end of the city centre.

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