Tickets to Manchester - the Alternatives

 

TRAIN ALL THE WAY

Starting your journey from stations between Chester and Plumley (inclusive) the ticket will have ‘Manchester Stations’ on it. It will be valid to Manchester Piccadilly, Oxford Road, or Deansgate, so you can go to one and return from another. Within the city centre you can use the free Metroshuttle buses but not Metrolink.

Starting from stations between Knutsford and Stockport (inclusive) the ticket to Manchester will have 'To Manchester Central Zone' on it. It will be valid to Manchester Piccadilly, Oxford Road or Deansgate, so you can go to one and return from another.  You can use the free Metroshuttle buses and also Metrolink - in the city centre only.  You cannot use it on Metrolink between Altrincham and the city centre – except on Sundays.



TRAIN AND TRAM

If you want to travel to any Metrolink station, you can buy a combined ticket (rail+Metrolink) at a ticket office or from the conductor and change at Altrincham.  They can also sell a Wayfarer for journeys starting after 0930, which is much better value and more flexible (see Wayfarer below).

Only single and day returns are available on Metrolink and no railcard discounts apply.

You must return by tram to Altrincham with a combined ticket.  

A return tram+train ticket is not valid by rail between Manchester city centre and Altrincham or vice versa. A rail ticket to Manchester Piccadilly or Manchester Central Zone is not valid on Metrolink between the city centre and Altrincham except on Sundays.

If you start between Hale and Navigation Road then the System One Bus and Train Day Saver ticket gives you the same benefits as a train ticket with PlusBus, but it is only valid from 09.30 to 1600 (inclusive) and after 18:59 on Monday to Friday (except Bank Holidays). It is valid all day at weekends.  There is a version for train+tram and another for bus+train+tram.  You can buy it from ticket offices, ticket machines and bus drivers.

 

WAYFARER

Wayfarer is the day-out ticket that lets you travel wherever you want to places in Greater Manchester and some adjoining parts of Derbyshire, Lancashire, Staffordshire, the Peak District and Cheshire (see maps). It is very good value. It’s perfect for a day out with your family or friends and gives complete freedom to go where you choose using buses, trains and trams.

Wayfarer lets you travel for a whole day by bus at any time and by train and tram after 09.30 weekdays and anytime Saturday, Sunday and bank holidays. (So you could travel in to Manchester via Metrolink and out by train – or vice versa).  

On the Mid Cheshire Line it covers journeys starting at all stations from Northwich to Manchester. 

If you start your journey west of Northwich (ie Chester to Greenbank inclusive) and are travelling beyond Manchester city centre then it might be worthwhile to buy a return to Northwich and a Wayfarer from Northwich onwards.

Wayfarer tickets can be used on the day of purchase or bought up to three days in advance.

Adults £13; Concession £8 (holders of English Bus Pass for older or and disabled people); Child £6.50; Group (up to 2 adults and 2 children) £26.

Click here for map of Rail and Metrolink Coverage

Click here for map of Bus Coverage

Further details of the Greater Manchester Wayfarer can be found at
www.tfgm.com/journey_planning/Tickets/Pages/tickets_wayfarer.aspx 

 

PLUSBUS

PlusBus is a supplement to any rail ticket which covers travel all day on many of the local bus services around a station.  It is available for Chester, Altrincham, Stockport, Manchester Piccadilly.  There are child and railcard discounts.  It is not valid on Metrolink.  You can buy it from ticket offices, ticket machines, bus drivers and train conductors. 

Greater Manchester PlusBus (Altrincham, Stockport or Manchester) is only available if you start your Mid Cheshire rail journey from stations between Chester and Ashley (inclusive).

If you start between Hale and Navigation Road then the System One Bus and Train Day Saver ticket gives you the same benefits as a train ticket with PlusBus, but it is only valid from 09.30 to 1600 (inclusive) and after 18:59 on Monday to Friday (except Bank Holidays). It is valid all day at weekends.  There is a version for train+tram and another for bus+train+tram.  You can buy it from ticket offices, ticket machines and bus drivers.

 

METROSHUTTLE

Free Metroshuttle buses operate in Manchester and Stockport centres.  They link the stations to the centres. You don't need a train ticket to use them.

 

TRANSPORT FOR GREATER MANCHESTER

The Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) website gives more detailed information and map - www.tfgm.com 

Its helpline (0161 228 7811) is staffed by knowledgeable local people. 

It is open from 0700-2000 Monday to Friday and 0800 to 2000 on Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays.

 

Click below for how to the Take the Train on the Mid Cheshire Line 

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This information is about the Mid Cheshire Line and its services (which run from Chester to Manchester via Altrincham and Stockport). 
It has been prepared by members of MCRUA (Mid Cheshire Rail Users Association) for the Community Rail Partnership.
There is much more information about Northern’s services on their website www.northernrailway.co.uk  
Timetables for the Line are available at station dispensers, ticket offices and for download from Northern. 
The Mid Cheshire Line leaflet gives details about places to visit along the Line and is available at ticket offices and to download.

Line News & Events

  • MID CHESHIRE LINE MUSIC TRAINS

    The Mid Cheshire Line Music Trains for 2019 have been annouced ....

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  • MARCH 2019 BUS REPLACEMENTS

    There is engineering work on the Mid Cheshire Line during March 2019 ....

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  • APRIL BUS REPLACEMENTS

    1st April 2019 - 4th April 2019

    There is engineering work on the Mid Cheshire Line during April 2019 ....

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  • BEST KEPT STATIONS

    5th February 2019

    Knutsford railway station has won an award at Cheshire Best Kept Stations ....

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  • BEST KEPT STATIONS

    5th February 2019

    Northwich and Greenbank railway stations have won an award at Cheshire Best Kept Stations ....

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  • WAYFARER PRICE INCREASE

    2nd January 2019

    As 2nd January 2019, the Manchester Wayfarer ticket increases ....

    Read More

This site has been re-designed using funding from the Designated Community Rail Development Fund - thank you to DfT, Network Rail and the Association of Community Rail Partnerships for their support.

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