Virgin Rail Accepting Air Tickets

Whatever it’s possible to say about Virgin Trains’ unreliability and high prices, they have shown a lot of ingenuity today:

Virgin West Coast has said it will accept London to Manchester air tickets on its trains.’

Of course it is good of Virgin to do this - PR moves don’t have to be cynical. It’s also a clever attempt to persuade people that the train makes sense, though - especially for London to Manchester, where the benefit of flying has always been marginal anyway. As airline travel becomes even more awkward (even when today’s restrictions are relaxed - let’s hope they are soon), the train will become increasingly attractive. It’s a shame, because air travel could be so much friendlier if it were calibrated for a reasonable level of risk rather than zero tolerance. But that doesn’t seem realistic in the foreseeable future.