From Stagecoach Press release page
Stagecoach Group announced today (22 May 2006) that its innovative budget rail initiative, megatrain.com, is to sell fares from just £1 on Virgin Trains services from next month.
Bargain megatrain.com fares, which are already being piloted successfully at South West Trains, will be introduced on more than a fifth of all Virgin CrossCountry services.
From Thursday 1 June, customers will be able to book these bargain fares on the Birmingham-Bournemouth, Bristol-Plymouth, Manchester-Edinburgh/ Glasgow, Morpeth-Edinburgh and Plymouth-Penzance routes. Tickets will be valid for travel from Monday 3 July.
Fares ranging from £1 to £10 (plus 50p booking fee) will be available only for advance booking at www.megatrain.com.
Passengers will benefit from bargain fares on 41 CrossCountry trains each weekday and customers will be able to book tickets up until 3am on the day of travel.
Ian Dobbs, Chief Executive of Stagecoach Groups rail division, said: We are delighted to be working with Virgin Trains to bring even cheaper fares to passengers on their inter-city CrossCountry services.
The initial pilot routes we have launched at our South West Trains franchise have proved extremely popular, attracting new passengers to the railways and helping to make the most of the capacity on the network.
We believe the megatrain.com concept, using flexible, value-for-money pricing, has the potential to transform the way fares are managed on the rail network for the benefit of passengers and rail operators.
Stagecoach launched megatrain.com in November 2005, introducing the cheapest tickets on the UK rail network for decades. Since then, around 440,000 people have visited the megatrain.com website and there have been nearly 45,000 bookings.
More than 5,000 cheap seats a week are now available on off-peak South West Trains services, Monday to Saturday, linking London with nine locations: Portsmouth, Southampton, Bournemouth, Weymouth, Exeter, Salisbury, Yeovil, Bath and Bristol.
The budget rail service was launched following the huge success of Stagecoachs market-leading low-cost inter-city coach operation, megabus.com, which now has a national network covering 40 UK cities and carries around 2 million passengers a year.