How to travel from Glasgow to Leeds by train

Manchester to Leeds by train

How to take a rail journey Manchester to Leeds

There are three journey journey options available when taking a train from Manchester to Leeds:
(1) the express trains operated by TransPennine Express from Manchester Victoria station
(2) express trains operated by TPE also depart from Manchester Piccadilly station
(3) taking the trains which head off from Manchester Victoria on a longer and therefore slower route, but they are typically (much) cheaper.

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Routes

Option 1: the express services from Victoria station

Travel Information

Final Destination: Newcastle or Redcar (or Saltburn)

All trains also call at: Huddersfield

One of these hourly services, the trains heading to Redcar, commence their journeys in the station at Manchester Airport and after departure from Piccadilly station they also call at Manchester Oxford Road station

2 x trains per hour

Tickets

Book Early and Save: Yes

Online Bookings Usually Open: from up to 24 weeks ahead of the travel date (usually); TransPennnine Express (TPE) places its ticket on sale sooner than other UK train operating companies.

Saving money:

If you want to travel at the cheapest possible price, look for the 'Advance tickets', though the four key things worth knowing about booking and using 'Advance' tickets in usual circumstances on this route are:
(1) The ticket(s) will be valid for the specific departure you select when making a booking.
(2) The ticket(s) cannot either be refunded, if you subsequently change your plans or miss the train due to any circumstances not attributable to the train operator.
(3) They can be exchanged to another departure on this route prior to the departure you have booked - but the price difference with the new ticket (the price will likely have risen since your original booking will need to be paid.
(4) TPE doesn't take Advance tickets off sale until 15 mins prior to departure.

Reservations:

All types of ticket booked at least 15 minutes ahead of travel for TPE trains have complimentary seat reservation.

If you book and Advance ticket(s) you have to travel on the train shown on the reservation, which will be the specific departure you selected when making a booking.
Though on boarding, you won't have to occupy the seat(s) you have been assigned for your ticket to be valid.

If you book Anytime or Off-Peak tickets you will be provided with a reservation(s) on the departure you selected when making a booking, but are able to transfer the reservation to any other valid departure on your travel date.
You can do this by contacting the TPE social media team, or at a station ticket desk.

What is unusual about travelling with TPE is that these reservations can be arranged up to around 15 minutes prior to departure - which is a much shorter time limit than the norm.

Travelling on Saturday-Sunday

Tickets are usually available 12 weeks ahead of the travel date, but maintenance work on the route is periodically undertaken at weekends and if it is scheduled on your travel date, it can affect when tickets will be released for sale.

If you're looking up a journey less than 12 weeks ahead and Advance tickets aren't available, it can be a good indication that works will be impacting on your travel date.
It can be worth checking this on the National Rail website - enter TransPennine Express as the operator.

Booking at the station

As TPE doesn't take Advance tickets off sale until 15 mins prior to departure, if you will be booking walk-up tickets at the station try to avoid booking at the last minute.

Offers and deals:

TPE offers a group deal for when groups of 3 - 9 adults are travelling together and Advance tickets are booked online - make sure you see the 'G' symbol which indicates that the discount has been applied.
You can save 33% of the total costs of the tickets and no Railcard is required.

Where to book
Ticket Provider Approximate Cost
TPE *

TPE Guide

TPE offers three unconventional means of booking and using tickets for travel by the trains it operates:

  • Advance tickets can be booked online up to 15 mins before departure
  • Seats are assigned on TPE trains when booking up to an hour prior to departure
  • There is no charge for transferring Advance tickets to an alternative departure, on the route originally booked.
National Rail *

National Rail Guide

In Great Britain each Train Operating Company provides its own booking service for journeys by its trains, but many of their websites also sell tickets for nationwide journeys, regardless of which company operates the trains on the routes you wish to travel by.

The National Rail website is plugged into all of the train operator's booking services, so when more than one of these companies offers tickets for a route, it in effect offers a price comparison service.
It isn't a ticket agent, so you will be connected to the website of your choice in order to make a booking.

On this journey

Journey Features

Scenic - YesMountain views

Good to Know

The new and rather smart Nova 1 trains are usually used on the trains heading to Newcastle, the 185 trains are typically used on the departures heading for Redcar.

Most of the scenic highlights are on the right, but this a view on the left Most of the scenic highlights are on the right, but this a view on the left
Looking towards The Pennines from the right-hand side Looking towards The Pennines from the right-hand side
A view from the viaduct which carries the railway into Huddersfield A view from the viaduct which carries the railway into Huddersfield
Passing through Slaithwaite shortly before Huddersfield Passing through Slaithwaite shortly before Huddersfield

The railway which takes the fastest route between Manchester and Leeds crosses The Pennines, so if the weather is playing along, there are inevitably some very nice views to be enjoyed from the train, particularly between Stalybridge and Huddersfield.

Option: 2 departing from Piccadilly

Travel Information

Final Destination: Hull

All trains also call at: Huddersfield

1 x train per hour

Tickets

Book Early and Save: Yes

Online Bookings Usually Open: from up to 24 weeks ahead of the travel date (usually); TransPennnine Express (TPE) places its ticket on sale sooner than other UK train operating companies.

Saving money:

If you want to travel at the cheapest possible price, look for the 'Advance tickets', though the four key things worth knowing about booking and using 'Advance' tickets in usual circumstances on this route are:
(1) The ticket(s) will be valid for the specific departure you select when making a booking.
(2) The ticket(s) cannot either be refunded, if you subsequently change your plans or miss the train due to any circumstances not attributable to the train operator.
(3) They can be exchanged to another departure on this route prior to the departure you have booked - but the price difference with the new ticket (the price will likely have risen since your original booking will need to be paid.
(4) TPE doesn't take Advance tickets off sale until 15 mins prior to departure.

Reservations:

All types of ticket booked at least 15 minutes ahead of travel for TPE trains have complimentary seat reservation.

If you book and Advance ticket(s) you have to travel on the train shown on the reservation, which will be the specific departure you selected when making a booking.
Though on boarding, you won't have to occupy the seat(s) you have been assigned for your ticket to be valid.

If you book Anytime or Off-Peak tickets you will be provided with a reservation(s) on the departure you selected when making a booking, but are able to transfer the reservation to any other valid departure on your travel date.
You can do this by contacting the TPE social media team, or at a station ticket desk.

What is unusual about travelling with TPE is that these reservations can be arranged up to around 15 minutes prior to departure - which is a much shorter time limit than the norm.

Travelling on Saturday-Sunday

Tickets are usually available 12 weeks ahead of the travel date, but maintenance work on the route is periodically undertaken at weekends and if it is scheduled on your travel date, it can affect when tickets will be released for sale.

If you're looking up a journey less than 12 weeks ahead and Advance tickets aren't available, it can be a good indication that works will be impacting on your travel date.
It can be worth checking this on the National Rail website - enter TransPennine Express as the operator.

Booking at the station

As TPE doesn't take Advance tickets off sale until 15 mins prior to departure, if you will be booking walk-up tickets at the station try to avoid booking at the last minute.

Offers and deals:

TPE offers a group deal for when groups of 3 - 9 adults are travelling together and Advance tickets are booked online - make sure you see the 'G' symbol which indicates that the discount has been applied.
You can save 33% of the total costs of the tickets and no Railcard is required.

Where to book
Ticket Provider Approximate Cost
TPE *

TPE Guide

TPE offers three unconventional means of booking and using tickets for travel by the trains it operates:

  • Advance tickets can be booked online up to 15 mins before departure
  • Seats are assigned on TPE trains when booking up to an hour prior to departure
  • There is no charge for transferring Advance tickets to an alternative departure, on the route originally booked.
National Rail *

National Rail Guide

In Great Britain each Train Operating Company provides its own booking service for journeys by its trains, but many of their websites also sell tickets for nationwide journeys, regardless of which company operates the trains on the routes you wish to travel by.

The National Rail website is plugged into all of the train operator's booking services, so when more than one of these companies offers tickets for a route, it in effect offers a price comparison service.
It isn't a ticket agent, so you will be connected to the website of your choice in order to make a booking.

On this journey

Journey Features

Scenic - Yes

Good to Know

Another hourly service departs from Piccadilly station for Leeds, but it takes an indirect route as it travels around the opposite end of Manchester city centre, so is slower by around 10mins.
It also departs from the platform/track at Piccadilly station farthest from the main entrance, in contrast another reason for targeting the faster trains heading to Hull is that they leave from platforms/tracks that are adjacent to the main concourse, so are steps awat from the main entrance.

After Stalybridge these trains take the same route as the TPE trains which depart from Manchester Victoria

Option 3: the slower services from Victoria

Travel Information

Final Destination: Leeds

All trains also call at: Hebden Bridge and Halifax and Bradford Interchange

Monday to Saturday 2 x trains per hour
Sunday 1 x train per hour

Tickets

Book early and save: Yes

The train company Northern offers discounted Advance tickets on this route from weeks ahead of travel, but what's good to know is that they can still be booked online (and saved to a mobile device) up until shortly before departure.
You can save a few £s by booking ahead, though you will have to select a specific departure, but if you then subsequently change your travel plans, you can't claim a refund.

But if you book online on you travel date you won't risk this scenario and the price will still be cheaper than what you would pay when booking last minute at the station.

Where to book
Ticket Provider Approximate Cost
Northern *

Northern Guide

Train operating company Northern offers discounted Advance tickets, which enable a saving of up to 65% from most of the stations used by its train.
They're placed on sale from six weeks ahead, which differs from the norm of how Advance tickets are usually sold; and they are available until shortly before the departure time.

National Rail *

National Rail Guide

In Great Britain each Train Operating Company provides its own booking service for journeys by its trains, but many of their websites also sell tickets for nationwide journeys, regardless of which company operates the trains on the routes you wish to travel by.

The National Rail website is plugged into all of the train operator's booking services, so when more than one of these companies offers tickets for a route, it in effect offers a price comparison service.
It isn't a ticket agent, so you will be connected to the website of your choice in order to make a booking.

On this journey

Good to Know

These trains can be more than £10 cheaper than taking the faster TPE services.
Although seat reservations are not available on these trains operated by Northern, the TPE trains also offer more luggage storage.

These trains take a different Trans-Pennine route which takes them through Hebden Bridge and Halifax; they reverse direction on departure from Bradford.

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