Cheap flights that cost less than UK train fares – we compare costs
Cheap flights are currently on offer and cheaper than UK train fares for Spring 2022 – the Mirror has compared the cost, including city break destinations to Poland, Estonia and more
According to a Mirror analysis, it is cheaper to go on holiday to Europe, enjoy a stay of several nights and then return to the UK than to take the train.
The huge difference between the cost of traveling by train – which is much more environmentally friendly per mile – than flying highlights what? magazine calls the “almost impossible” decision facing travelers.
The issue was brought to light this week when Sunderland fan James Jelly booked himself and his girlfriend on a flight from Newcastle to Menorca and then London the next day after a night’s sleep and breakfast.
It only cost him £51 and meant he would get to London in time to watch his team play at Wembley.
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By comparison, the cheapest prices shown on The Trainline on Monday had a one-way ticket from Sunderland to King’s Cross on Friday for £83 and Saturday for £69.
From Newcastle it showed the same route for £79 on Friday, £54 on Saturday.
Although significantly cheaper for James and his girlfriend, the flights will have produced half a tonne of Co2 – around 1/32nd of the globe’s heating gas that the average Brit dumps into the atmosphere each year.
In comparison, the train journey for two produces only 34 kg, which is 14 times less than the plane journey they took.
The Mirror unearthed more air travel available on Thursday which highlights how cheap flying is now compared to the train, despite the huge impact it has on the environment.
Flying from Newcastle to Gdansk in Poland on May 23 and then traveling to London two days later costs £12 and 238kg of Co2, with accommodation in the city available for just £16 a night.
The cheapest train from Newcastle to London on May 23 costs £45 and 17kg CO2 if booked today, and does not include a two-night stay in a beautiful Polish city.
Also on May 23, you can take off from Leeds to Vilnius in Lithuania on a Ryanair flight, have a quick layover at the airport, then fly to London Stansted on WizzAir (289 kg/Co2)
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It will only cost you £15, half the price of the cheapest train ticket currently on sale (11kg/Co2).
Another way to get to the capital is to board a Ryanair flight from Liverpool John Lennon Airport to Tallinn, spend two hours gazing at the Estonian capital through the airport windows, and then heading for London Gatwick (296 kg/Co2).
It costs £31 – just a little less than the very reasonable £33 (12kg/Co2) train ticket available for the same day.
If you want to fly from Edinburgh to London for a short stay and then back, it will cost around £60 (164kg/Co2) at the end of May.
Colin Lane/Echo of Liverpool)
Making the same train journey on the same days currently costs double. (46kg/Co2).
Flying from Exeter in Devon to Newcastle on May 28 and returning three days later will cost you £67 (232kg/Co2) on easyJet.
Without a train pass, the same journey costs at least £215 (41 kg/Co2) by train.
A study by Which? last year also highlighted how the problem has gotten worse and how environmentally conscious passengers are lured onto planes due to the high cost of train tickets.
He found that train fares on popular routes in the UK are 50% more expensive than air fares, despite the fact that train journeys result in 80% less carbon dioxide emissions.
Which ? study looked at 10 routes within the UK and found that eight were cheaper by air.
Traveling from Birmingham to Newquay costs just £67 by plane, but £180 by train.
Traveling from Bristol to Newcastle by train costs more than double the airfare.
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The round trip by plane generated 203 kg of CO2 per person, compared to 33 kg for the train.
“As the pandemic continues to create uncertainty for international travel, many of us are vacationing closer to home this year,” said Rory Boland, travel editor at Which?
“Travellers choosing to take the train face significantly higher fares and travel times, which puts those who want to reduce their impact on the environment at a disadvantage.”
One technique that could reduce the amount of CO2 pumped into the atmosphere by planes would be to impose a frequent flyer tax on air travel.
Currently, only 15% of the country’s inhabitants take 70% of the flights.
Green campaigners have also argued that higher taxes on the use of private jets could help a mode of transport that is terrible for the environment.
However, the Conservative government seems to be taking the economy in the opposite direction.
Last March, he announced his intention to reduce the air passenger tax on domestic flights, while increasing rail fares.