Gransnet forums


Train travel

(35 Posts)
Cyrana Fri 24-Jul-20 07:12:12

I made a short train journey of 8 mins last week. Hardly anyone wearing a mask. Would like to make a longer journey of an hour, but feel unsure. Am 74 with moderate COPD. Any thoughts ......anyone?

vegansrock Fri 24-Jul-20 07:22:29

I’m not sure where you live but I went on a train in London for the first time in ages - was pleasantly surprised that it was fairly empty and pretty much everyone I saw was wearing a mask, so I felt fairly relaxed. Maybe a longer journey you’d find more compliance.

tanith Fri 24-Jul-20 07:22:41

I wouldn’t do it and I don’t have copd. I won’t be going on a bus or train for a long while but I have a car so it’s easy for me to say I suppose. If you really have to then be extremely careful.

Illte Fri 24-Jul-20 07:47:48

Masks will reduce the risk but not eliminate it. Even if everyone was in a mask. Surfaces are a significant risk in shared areas and can't be cleaned between every journey.

You have to weigh
the importance of the journey

the level of infection in the areas you live and are travelling to

how ill you are likely to be if you catch the virus which I'm afraid in your case (age and underlying condition) is probably very ill.

Then decide how much you want to msje that journey.

Illte Fri 24-Jul-20 07:48:06


fevertree Fri 24-Jul-20 07:49:26

I went on an hour long train journey 2 weeks ago (from London) and my experience echoes that of vegansrock. You obviously must make up your own mind, but my feeling is that as best as we can, we must get on with our lives.

fevertree Fri 24-Jul-20 07:50:42

I agree that surfaces are a risk, which is why I carry alcogel in my bag and use it frequently.

Scribbles Fri 24-Jul-20 08:30:03

I travelled from Lincoln to Richmond, Surrey and back a couple of weeks ago and it was one of the nicest trips I've ever taken. Allocated seating, at least 2m apart, on the train to Kings Cross and very few people travelling so it was blissfully peaceful and I didn't see anyone without a mask/covering.

The suburban train to Richmond was also quiet and around 95% of those I saw had their faces covered. The return trip was much the same.

I have to qualify this by saying that I don't have the sort of health conditions which might add to concerns and I have been somewhat dismissive throughout of the panic and alarm about public transport which has been engendered in so many people.

However, I have never seen the trains so clean as they are at present; station staff are politely reminding people to stay apart. My feeling is that if the OP follows the rules, avoids the rush hour, carries and uses hand cleanser, then there's no reason not to take a train journey.

Cyrana Fri 24-Jul-20 08:59:32

Thanks all - very helpful.

Mollygo Sat 25-Jul-20 09:21:56

Probably now is the safest time to travel-equipped with sanitiser and a mask.
I haven’t been on a train, but people I see on the buses here are always masked.
The thought of having lungs only working between 50%-75% would be a worry for me, but I’d want to get out and about whilst I still could.
If your journey is important for you for whatever reason, go for it.
Hope you enjoy it Cyrana.

Cp43 Sat 25-Jul-20 09:29:20

I had no choice but to get train from london to up north as mum broke hip. I was anxious but it was much better than I thought.
Toilets at Euston station clean and if you wear throw away gloves you can bin them and put on another pair until you are in seat on train. I wiped table seat arms plug socket etc, wear masks and visor. Seat spacing is very good and you can’t board without booking in advance.

SusieB50 Sat 25-Jul-20 09:47:35

I travelled from London to Hove and back last week, no problem on the train at all almost had the carriage to myself With nearly everyone wearing masks . I used hand gel a lot and tried not to touch doors etc . Washed my hands immediately on arriving at my destination.If you choose your time to travel late morning / early afternoon it should be fine . However on the tube return journey I was annoyed that a large number of people had their masks fashionably placed under their chins ready to pull up over their faces if challenged . I was able to keep a good distance fortunately .

georgia101 Sat 25-Jul-20 09:59:04

My DIL travelled from the SW of England to the Midlands by train a couple of weeks ago and she said that the further north she went, the fewer the people wearing masks. She felt very vulnerable. Maybe now it has been made law to wear face coverings in shops, more people will be prepared to wear them in public generally. I still won't risk using public transport for a long time yet.

Shelld Sat 25-Jul-20 10:10:06

I think Illte has identified the risk factors very well.

I personally would avoid using public transport if you can, given your health conditions and the high risk they place you under.

The primary risk is from airborne transmission not touching surfaces although that also poses a risk too.

A high risk comes in public transport because the virus can remain indoors in unventilated areas for several days.

However if you do have to travel wear a mask, take antibacterial gel and try to sit in a ventilated area.

Good luck

Shandy57 Sat 25-Jul-20 10:16:56

I'm off to Broadstairs househunting at the end of August, thanks for your reassuring posts.

grannysyb Sat 25-Jul-20 10:32:44

Have used trains and buses in my suburban area for some while now, once I was the only passenger on the bus for the entire 10 minute journey! I put on my mask and use sanitiser a lot, I feel I need to try to get back to some semblance of normality.

Annie29 Sat 25-Jul-20 10:52:50

I thought the government had said everyone had to wear masks on all public transport.

Gwenisgreat1 Sat 25-Jul-20 11:08:11

I have Bronchiectasis and would not use public transport yet. I am longing to but would prefer to come out of this unscathed!
That is just me, you know the area you live and what to expect. The decision is ultimately yours!

GoldenAge Sat 25-Jul-20 11:16:58

A question of balance here - it’s summer and people have been shut away for several months - the mental health outcomes of fear and isolation are now coming to light and for those who yearn for a holiday one by train in the U.K. is safer than one by plane to somewhere else. Masks are required to be worn on all public transport and living in London I see them being worn in the street as well especially now as people must wear them in the shops - on a train as well as a mask you can wear a face visor which is an added layer of protection and there are windows that can be opened in trains so all in all there’s a good chance of fresh air circulating.

moggie57 Sat 25-Jul-20 11:18:08

I make a 2 week travel from croydon to west sussex.salvation army business.even though i am exepmt from wearing a face mask .i do wear a face visor and i clean where i sit.apart from that its ok.i have noticed a lot of people without masks.i usually ask wheres your mask .they look at mr and say its against my i say its not against mine to be protected from idiots like you.plain selfish.

Caro57 Sat 25-Jul-20 11:49:32

If possible get a Senior Rail Card, book well in advance for good price on first Class then you will have more space and can reserve a single seat at off peak travel time - again more space.

Kim19 Sat 25-Jul-20 12:19:15

I'm keen to get to London. First toyed with upgrading to 1st class in the hope of better spacing but realise this is erroneous with gaps being engineered by rail companies. Simply do not think I could manage a mask for four plus hours solid. I've only managed half an hour so far and not with great ease. I comply, of course, but am curtailing these visits hugely. I'm now toying with using the sleeper service but will have to investigate the Covid safety requirements first. What I read here of rail travel is decidedly encouraging. Thank you all for reporting back.

Lupin Sat 25-Jul-20 12:24:23

I have had to shield over the past months and have now been given a hospital appointment at the hospital - a short bus ride away. Today = a little in advance of shielding being lifted I am contemplating going to the local shops for a few things. I feel rather nervous - like a new girl -I have the masks and sanitiser at the ready, Good luck OP, I advise going on the train and taking all the precautions. I will think of you as I sally forth. We will all have to live with a measure of risk I think.

grandtanteJE65 Sat 25-Jul-20 13:04:35

The old war-time poster comes to mind: Is your journey really necessary?

If it is, wear a mask, take hand disinfectant with you and some cloths so you can wipe down things like door handles.

I would feel tempted to reserve two seats, so I was certain of not sitting beside a total stranger.

Jcar Sat 25-Jul-20 13:14:26

Last week I travelled from Euston to Glasgow and back. On the return journey I was the only person in the whole of first class! I felt completely safe (wore a mask) - staff constantly cleaning surfaces door panels etc. I do hope more people bite the bullet and travel or else what will happen to our train services? They can’t be subsidised for ever! Unless you feel your health issues are too serious to risk then I would say take all reasonable precautions but otherwise get travelling especially while infection rates are low. Who knows what the winter will bring?