On most Rail journeys you can normally request position, preference, direction, and location during the booking process, however you cannot allocate a specific seat as trains do not display digital seating screens as when you book a flight.
As you go through the booking you can complete your Seat Selection:
As you know our train data come direct from Trainline, this is their statement regarding seat reservations:
Why don’t I have a seat reservation? We always do our best to reserve you a seat using the preferences you provided us. If you haven’t been given a seat reservation this could be for a few reasons –
- The Train Operating Company (TOC) you are travelling with doesn’t provide seat reservations on that train, this is common on shorter routes and during peak travel times on commuter routes. On these trains you can sit in any vacant seat in the class your ticket is booked for.
- The allocation of seats that can be reserved is fully booked or you booked your ticket close to the departure time and the seat reservations have already closed. Not to worry, a portion of seats are always left unreserved, you can sit in any vacant unreserved seat.
- You booked your ticket before the seat reservations were open. Seat reservations typically open 3 months in advance, if you booked a flexible ticket (Anytime, Off-Peak or Super Off-Peak) before then you will not have been allocated a seat, however you may be able to reserve a seat closer to the time.
For reference, we also added GWR:
Reserving a seat can sometimes be confusing. So, we’ve put together a quick guide to help when you plan your journey.
- some of our services don’t have reservations at all; you can buy a ticket and sit in any seat
- on our trains that have reservations, you can usually do this when you buy your ticket; this is the best time to make sure you get an allocated seat for your journey
- we’ll ask what type of seat you want, such as facing forwards or at a table, and will do our best to find the right one for you
- most reservations on GWR trains will give you a specific seat in a specific carriage; you can find the details on your ticket or in your confirmation email
- sometimes we’ll allocate you a space on the train rather than a specific seat; this means you are booked to travel on that train and can sit in any vacant seat for your class of travel
We don’t reserve all the seats on our trains. This is so that there is room for customers who have bought their ticket on the day, have tickets that let them choose their train (such as Season tickets), or who might have been disrupted and need to change their plans.