train winning the long-distance travel battle

According to the Association of Train Operating Companies, the train is fast becoming the transport mode of choice for long distance travellers in the UK.

The organisation said the trend reflected tough financial times and the increasing availability of cheap advance fares on the railways - suggesting 800,000 are sold each week compared to just 500,00 five years ago.

Certain routes, however, fare better than others in the battle between land and sky. Whilst London to Newcastle and London to Manchester are highly popular, a mere 3% of passengers are willing to make the journey from Bristol to Aberdeen by train and similarly, only 8% from London to Aberdeen by the same mode.

It doesn't take a genius to work out that frequent flyer's are a prime target market for TOCs who run long-distance routes. Passengers who have already done the hard part of ditching their car in the first place can surely be persuaded to try the train as well.