Warning to Visitors

Some of the information below may be out of date as a result of changing timetables and services. Please double check the accuracy of all information before travelling.

The booking forms should be up to date however, so if tickets for a particular service are available, then the service should be operational.

London - Edinburgh (East Coast Train)

Rail

The Journey

The train between London and Edinburgh is operated by East Coast, travelling up the east side of England and Scotland along the historical East Coast Mainline, between London King's Cross and Edinburgh Waverley. The relatively quick journey is a great alternative to flying, as it gets you right to the heart of the cities in a matter of hours, and for a very reasonable price (as long as you book in advance!).

In the past, a number of these services continued to/originated from Glasgow Central. East Coast now only operates one Glasgow service per day Mondays-Fridays, none on Saturdays and only one on Sundays. If you are travelling between London and Glasgow, the West Coast Man Line is a better option.


East Coast Trains

East Coast are a train operator that run high-speed passenger services along the East Coast Main Line in the United Kingdom. The company operates long-distance services between London and Edinburgh, Leeds and Newcastle:

  • London - Newark / York;
  • London - Leeds;
  • London - Newcastle; and
  • London - Edinburgh.

The company also operates less regular services to destinations including Glasgow, Aberdeen, Inverness, Hull, Lincoln, Skipton, Harrogate and Bradford.

East Coast offers both Standard and First Class accommodation. If you would like to travel in relative peace, both passenger classes offer you the option to be seated in the Quiet Coach. Passengers in this area are asked not to make or receive telephone calls, and operate all electrical equipment as silently as possible.

First Class passengers benefit from larger, more comfortable seats that recline and have their own tables. Most First Class seats have access to electrical outlets. First Class passengers receive a complimentary at-seat food and drink service. Longer journeys include a full meal, whereas shorter trips include a drink and snacks. You can find out more about the East Coast food options here.

First Class Lounges are available at a number of stations across the UK, including London King's Cross, Leeds, Newcastle, Edinburgh Waverley, Berwick-upon-Tweed, Darlington, Wakefield Westgage and Doncaster. Lounges provide passengers with complimentary refreshments and newspapers, as well as internet access and business facilities. 

Each passenger is permitted to carry three medium pieces of luggage onboard, free of charge. Additional or oversized luggage may be carried at the discretion of the train manager, and a fee charged. Any luggage that is stored in the guard's van should be clearly labelled. Space for luggage is provided in each carriage, either in designated racks or under seats.

Food & Drink

First Class passengers receive a complimentary at-seat food and drink service. Standard Class passengers may take advantage of the CafeBAR carriage, which services a range of sandwiches, hot and cold snacks, as well as alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. On some routes, a refreshment trolley service may also be available. If you are a regular traveller, you may consider buying an East Coast Catering Voucher, which can be bought and exchanged for food and drink from the CafeBAR or trolley at a favourable rate.

WiFi / Internet

First Class passengers can take advantage of free internet access throughout their carriage. Standard Class passengers may purchase internet access at a rate of £4.95/hr, or £9.95 for 24hrs.

Disabled Passengers

All East Coast trains have space for two wheelchairs (max. dimensions 120cm long and 75cm wide). Accessible toilets are located close to designated wheelchair spaces. Disabled passengers are requested to contact the Assisted Travel team in advance of travel on 08457 225 225.

Travelling with Pets

Pets may travel with their owners free of charge, provided they do not occupy a seat. 

Bicycles

One bicycle per customer can be transported free of charge on East Coast services. Bicycle spaces should be reserved in advance of travel, either at the time of ticket purchase, or by speaking to an East Coast Travel Centre or station at least 24hrs before travel. All bicycles should be clearly labelled with your name and address, as well as destination station. Bicycles are stored in the guard's carriage, and should be ready on the platform five minutes before your train departs. Folding bicycles may be stored on-board as standard luggage, and do not require an advanced reservation.

Timetable

A full current timetable can be found on the East Coast Mainline's website, here. The journey between London and Edinburgh takes, on average, 4hrs 30mins.

London to Edinburgh by Train:

RouteDayFirstLastFrequencyJourney Time
London to EdinburghMon - Thu07.0019.00hourly4hrs 30mins
Fri07.0019.30hourly4hrs 30mins
Sat06.1518.00hourly4hrs 30mins
Sun09.0019.00hourly4hrs 30mins
Edinburgh to LondonMon - Fri05.4018.30hourly4hrs 30mins
Sat06.2017.30hourly4hrs 30mins
Sun09.0019.00hourly4hrs 30mins

Monday - Friday, the 15.30 service from London continues to Glasgow Central. On Sundays, the 16.30 service from London continues to Glasgow Central.

Monday - Saturday, the 06.50 service from Edinburgh originates from Glasgow Central. 

Price

Tickets start from £14.50 single, if you book far enough in advance and choose particular train times. The later and more specific you book however, the more expensive it gets - with tickets costing hundreds of pounds if booked on the day.

A range of special offers are available on the East Coast website.

Types of Ticket

Advance - best value single tickets as long as you buy your ticket in advance of travel. The earlier you book, the cheaper the ticket.

Off-Peak - available right up until the train leaves, but not as cheap as Advance fares.

Anytime - available right up until the train leaves, with maximum flexibility. The most expensive ticket option.

Group - discounts are available for groups of 10 or more passengers.

First Class Upgrades - Standard Class tickets can be upgraded on weekends and Bank Holidays (capacity permitting) for £15-25 depending on the journey.

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