Rail fares slashed to boost holiday train travel in West of Scotland

WHEELS AWAY: Reduced fares will operate throughout the summer holidays.
WHEELS AWAY: Reduced fares will operate throughout the summer holidays.

Train fares in Ayrshire and Strathclyde are to be reduced to get tickets sales speeding up for the summer.

This week saw the announcement of price cuts on the Stranraer to Glasgow line - which takes in Barrhill, Girvan, Maybole and Ayr – during August and September in an effort to boost use of the area’s rail network.

From August 4 to September 30 fares between Ayr and Stranraer will be dropped by up to 65 percent, with a return fare down to £7.50.

A £15 ticket between Stranraer and Glasgow will also be on offer for the limited period, while a flat fare of £2 will apply to accompanied children.

The temporary hiatus coincides with Strathclyde Passenger Transport’s ‘kids go free’ season on Glasgow’s subway – which runs from June 25 to August 17 – during which two under-16s can travel for free all day with a fee-paying adult.

Adam Ingram, MSP for Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley, said: “This is good news for rail users and with competitive pricing in place will hopefully encourage more people to use the local train service.”

Alex Neil, Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure and Capital Investment, who announced the plans on a visit to Stranraer last month, said he was delighted with the ‘significant saving’ for passengers.

“These fare savings will provide enormous benefits to passengers currently using the services and help to encourage new passengers onto the services,” he said.

Potential service users in Girvan were not so convinced of the offer however.

The McGregor family from the town’s Troweir Road said: “We tend to use the car.

“Maybe part of that is that we don’t know what the times are - because we use the car we don’t tend to look. It’s just convenience.”

Ross Beauchamp, 35, who lives on Carrick Street, agreed. “I used the train to Stranraer for the first time last week and I’ve lived here for years,” he said.

“As for the fares, I’m not that bothered. I will pay whatever it is.”

Fiona Burke, 24, of Maxwell Street said she would be encouraged to use the service more at a lower price though.

“I use the train quite a lot – I go through to Dumbarton - so it would make me more likely to go by train over the summer,” she said.

Promotional tickets can be bought now from booking offices or ScotRail telesales on 08457 550033 between 7am and 10pm daily. They will be available online from July 20.