A new website, TrainSplit.com, has been launched to help railway users purchase tickets at much lower prices. Rather than purchasing one ticket for the entire journey, the website searches for cheaper tickets by splitting the train journey up into different legs. Although users will be travelling on the same train, and not have to disembark until they reach their final destination, having separate tickets for the different sections of the journey can result in a substantial saving.
The founders of the website, computer programmer Nick Brown, rail buff Mark Richardson and business partner George Sikking, believe that railway companies are currently overcharging its customers by about 42%. In order for a customer to manually search for cheaper tickets by breaking up their journey into sections, they would have to do a fair amount of dedicated research, which would take a long time.
Although a similar search engine already exists on MoneySavingExpert.com, their model only splits the journey up into two legs, whereas TrainSplit.com can split it into five. This means that a journey from London to Manchester, which would usually cost £270 when bought on railway websites, can now be split into five separate tickets and cost £179.50, saving the customer £90.50 on just this one journey. For those who regularly travel around the country by train, this could turn into a massive saving.
The founders of their website currently have plans to extend their ticket offering to include tickets for the London Underground, as well as even cheaper tickets for people who do not mind if their journey takes slightly longer. Splitting tickets is legal and allowed under the conditions of carriage, but train companies in the past have lobbied with the government to try to ban the practice of ticket splitting.