Coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advice

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Coronavirus – Our safer travel pledge

Please follow Government advice and only travel for work, or for other legally permitted reasons. If you need to travel, we have a safer travel pledge to detail all the things we’re doing to keep you safe. See below on ‘how we’re keeping you safe’.

Your safety is important to us. This is our safer travel pledge.

Travelling with Greater Anglia Covid-19 travel advice

View the government's travel advice and information on other guidance linked to the coronavirus situation. The advice can be amended as the situation evolves, so please check for the most up-to-date information. Feel free to also look through the National Rail Enquiries Q&A.

Simple things to remember

  1. Do not travel if unwell or have symptoms
  2. Wash your hands regularly
  3. Avoid busiest times/routes
  4. Keep a safe distance while travelling when possible
  5. Wear a face covering unless you are exempt

Plan ahead, consider others and stay safe.

Examples of safety measures for Coronavirus

Although we encourage you to buy your ticket in advance and on our app for minimal contact, there are still ticket offices and ticket machines available at stations should you need to use them. Please use contactless where possible but cash will be taken. Reservations are not mandatory nor available on routes and tickets where you would usually have a seat reservation.This is due to the introduction of a new fleet where it is currently not possible to provide reservations.

Cross-border journeys

Please be aware that travel restrictions and local circumstances linked to the coronavirus pandemic may be different in Wales or Scotland, so if you are travelling to destinations in the devolved nations, please check details before you travel.

View government guidance:

The usual staffed stations, continue to have our colleagues present and will be available to help with any questions and concerns you have. You will find them at ticket offices, and on platforms, as well as customer service offices where available. Help points are also available at non staffed stations'

Cleaning and hygiene

  • Continuing to step up cleaning of our trains and stations, paying particular attention to high touch areas such as push buttons, door handles and grab rails.
  • We've invested in cleaning equipment - Fogging guns and vacuum backpacks.
  • Keeping soap, water and toilet paper topped up in our toilets on stations and trains.
  • Keeping toilets open wherever possible.
  • Discouraging the use of cash when buying tickets. We can still accept cash if you have no other means of payment.
  • Turnaround cleaning is carried out at terminus stations throughout the day in on train toilets and train interiors. This includes high touch point areas such as grab rails and washroom surfaces. Touchpoints are additionally sanitised overnight.
  • Fogging is delivered to in-service trains at a frequency of 42 days following an interior heavy clean. Reactive fogging is also undertaken where a suspected case of COVID-19 has been reported. Monthly swab testing is also undertaken for COVID.

Hand sanitisers are available at all staffed stations, but we encourage you to always carry your own.

Social distancing

  • Making trains as long as possible, so that passengers can spread out throughout them.
  • Reminding people to social distance on our trains through announcements and pre-departure messaging.
  • Constantly monitoring passenger numbers so that we can make trains longer or increase the frequency if necessary.
  • Making it clear how you can keep your distance at stations with signs, posters, floor markings and tape.
  • Putting in queue systems and one-way systems where necessary to control the number of people on platforms or in stations at a time.
  • Deploying staff at some busier stations to help you follow all appropriate social distancing guidelines.
  • Following all Government and Public Health England advice on keeping our customers safe.

Before you travel

  • Do not travel if you have any COVID-19 symptoms, self-isolating as a result of coronavirus symptoms, sharing a household or support bubble with somebody with symptoms or if you're clinically extremely vulnerable and cannot shield during your journey & have been advised by the NHS test and trace service that you should self-isolate. Please check the NHS website for information.​
  • Buy your ticket online or on our App on your phone and before you get to the station preferably, so that you minimise your time at the station. Read our blog to find out how easy it to buy cheap tickets online or on our app.
  • Although we encourage you to buy your ticket in advance, you are not required to make a reservation as reservations are not currently available because we're rolling out our new trains fleet. Please remember to socially distance when choosing a seat whilst on the train and not sit facing face to face with another person.

  • Please try and adjust your journey to avoid the busiest times, if possible. The peak periods are usually on Mondays to Fridays on trains arriving in London Liverpool Street between 07.00 and 09.00 and departing from London Liverpool Street between 16.30 and 19.00.

  • However, we are also providing specific details of the busiest trains at the moment, so please check this information using the less busy trains tool and try to choose another train if you can. These are more likely to be trains to/from London Liverpool Street in the peak periods, but if there are other trains, such as into key regional centres such as Colchester, Ipswich, Norwich and Cambridge, which are regularly very busy, they will be highlighted. If a train is not mentioned it is because it is not normally busy and/or there is plenty of available seating on it. We monitor trains every day, to ensure we keep the details up to date, so please check as the position may change over time.

When travelling

Hares keeping a safe distance apart

  • Wear a face covering on our trains and at our stations. This is mandatory unless you’re exempt. Failure can mean a £3200 maximum fine.
  • Follow all Government and NHS hygiene guidance.
    • Wash your hands.
    • Cough or sneeze into your elbow or tissue – and throw tissues in the bin.
    • There is liquid soap available at our stations and on-train toilets and hand sanitiser available at all of our stations which have a ticket office. Please bring your own hand sanitiser if it isn’t available at your station.
  • Comply with our queuing and one-way systems.
  • Sit apart from others on the train and spread out throughout the carriage. Sit near the window if possible. Follow instructions about how you can keep your distance – listen to announcements on our trains, read posters and follow floor markings at stations.
  • If you need to buy your ticket at the station, please use contactless payment.
  • Don’t leave your rubbish on the train or at the station, unless it’s in the bin so that our cleaners can spend more time cleaning than litter-picking. If you’re wearing a face mask or gloves, please don’t discard them on the train or at our stations.
  • Listen to our staff. They’re trying to keep us all safe.
  • Stand back and let people off the train before you board the train. Use all available doors and move down the train. Please get on and off the train as quickly as you can.
  • Don’t congregate at the front of the train on the approach to London Liverpool Street. or Norwich.

  • Only one person in a lift at a time, please.

Other important info

  • If the last train is full and you are unable to board it, or train service disruption causes you to miss a scheduled connection for the last train, we will seek to provide replacement transport to get you to your destination station. Please contact a member of station staff or use the customer information contact facility available at the station (usually via the ticket vending machine) to seek assistance.
  • For the interest of your safety, when stations or trains are at full social distancing capacity, station teams may at times prevent customers from entering a station, platform or from boarding a specific service if social distancing is being severely compromised. If this occurs during service disruption, our control teams will decide on a train by train basis whether to remove scheduled stops to reduce the impact on social distancing as best as possible.
  • You should not board trains that you feel are too full and that you feel may therefore not be safe to travel on. Instead, you should wait for another train or speak to a member of staff.

The government has made the wearing of face coverings mandatory, unless exempt, in England on trains and at stations/transport hubs. Anyone not wearing a face covering who isn't exempt, is liable to receive a £200 fine for a first offence which will double at each offence with a maximum fine of £6400 from the Police or TFL. View more information.

For a list of exemptions view the government's website

  • A face covering vending machine can be found at London Liverpool Street station and many of our staffed stations may provide you with one if needed.

The on board buffet on intercity services, is temporarily suspended due to the lockdown.

All ticket offices are open. Normal ticket office hours apply, except for Newport, its opening hours are 06.30 to 09.15 Monday to Friday only.

We're reducing our timetable from Monday 25 January, which is a reaction to the fall in customer numbers due to Covid 19 and the current lockdown. We'll continue to run services so essential travellers can still get to work or medical appointments. Please always check before you travel.

View Covid 19 timetable reduction information.

Our ticket refund policy changed from 7 September 2020. View current policy.

Please book assistance a minimum of 12 hours before you travel. Sometimes it may not be possible to book in advance, in which case assistance will be available from stationed staff.

The call centre opening times have changed. You can contact the assisted travel line on Monday to Friday between 8am-8pm and 9am-5pm at weekends on 0800 028 2878 (free of charge) or via Textphone and Minicom: 18001 0800 028 2878.

If you need to request assistance outside of these times for travel the next day only, please call 0800 0223720.

Alternatively, you can submit a request online.

If your journey goes beyond our network and includes travel on other train operators' services, please book 24 hours before travelling so we can meet their notice period requirements.

Passenger assistance may change from pre-pandemic assistance to maintain social distancing. Some of the changes include:

  • Making sure that members of staff only make contact with passengers when it is absolutely necessary.
  • Reminding customers in wheelchairs that they need to face forward whenever possible.
  • Staff making sure that unless support is required, they are at least 2m away from customers whenever possible.
  • Staff making sure that they wipe the handles and brakes on the chair before and after they have made contact with them.
  • If you are visually impaired, our colleagues will guide you to your train using their elbow, and will ensure there is no skin-to-skin contact and that they will remain facing forwards.

We also can provide turn up and go assistance to those who haven’t pre-booked.

All station and on train toilets are open as per their normal opening times. Waiting rooms are also all open as per normal opening hours.

For more information on station facilities, please view our station information section.