New digital railcards could spell the end of paper versions –

Fines for forgetting your railcard could soon become a thing of the past, as they are about to become accessible on smartphones for first time.

National Rail is ending the need to carry a paper railcard by allowing people to buy them online and then download them onto a smartphone via an app.

The digital 16-25 Railcard and Network Railcard is already available and will be followed shortly by the Family & Friends and Two Together Railcards. Senior and Disabled Persons Railcards will also be available by the end of the year, National Rail said.

The change will mean Network Railcard holders can finally stop worrying about losing, or forgetting, their railcards, which can result in hefty fines. 

It comes after plans for a “Millennial” railcard for 26-30 year olds entitling them to a third off all train journeys was leaked last week.

The new railcard will be trialled by a train company from December, and will be rolled out nationally early next year, according to documents. It is being introduced first by Greater Anglia Railways from early December, with 10,000 railcards initially available.

Internal documents from the Rail Delivery Group suggest the scheme will go national in early 2018. Jyoti Bird, Director at National Rail, said: “National Rail and the train companies are making it quicker and easier for passengers to save 1/3 on fares, thanks to the launch of the digital 16-25 and Network Railcards. Railcards enable customers to explore more of Great Britain for fun, in an ultra-convenient and cost-effective way.”


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