• Tue. Nov 29th, 2022

A travel guide from your Head of Societies and Development @ Manchester Metropolitan University Students’ Union

ByKeith M. Jones

Nov 3, 2022
Thursday 03-11-2022 – 15:51

Your student officers prepare monthly articles for you. All designed to focus on a different theme with the best tips, tricks and hacks to save you time, money and make your student experience even better.

This month’s guide is brought to you by Shazeaa, your Corporate and Development Officer.

If you’re a student commuter or one of our locals who travels a lot, keep reading.

To travel by train

First of all, we know you already know this, but there are 3 main train stations in Manchester:

+ Manchester Picadilly

+ Oxford Road from Manchester


Knowing in advance which of these stations is closest to you, and where you need to be for Uni, will save you time and money.

Plus, if your class schedule permits, traveling during off-peak hours will also save you a few pennies. Off-peak hours for trains are generally 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and from 6:30 p.m.

It goes without saying, but rush hour trains are busier because you are among thousands of others trying to be on time for those 9am departures.

If you come to Manchester every day for college (or work) it’s worth getting a monthly train ticket. It covers you for 30 days and you don’t have to worry about forgetting to buy your tickets or trying to get them at the best price.

Besides that, a Train card is a must for any student commuting, it will save you up to 1/3 on your train fare.

You will likely qualify for either Railcard 16 – 25 or Railcard 26 – 30. There are plenty of other options though, so check them out before buying one to make sure you’re making the right choice.

Buying your train tickets in advance is also an easy way to save money. Advance tickets are cheaper, but non-refundable, and you can only travel on the route and duration you paid for. By doing so, in addition to having your Railcard, you are guaranteed to keep your pockets as full as possible.

For instance:

A standard train ticket from Rochdale to Manchester Victoria (without advance), which allows you to travel at different times and routes, would cost you £5.70. With a Rail Card it would cost £3.75.

If you were to buy a ticket in advance for this trip, the price would be reduced to £3.10. This price would be further reduced with a Rail Card, at £2.

If you plan ahead with train travel, and follow the tips in this guide, the savings will be endless.

Traveling by bus

If you didn’t know (which you should, we’ve said enough), The Union Finance Office is the best place to get a bus pass.

Bus passes can also be purchased on the Met Card and cover access to weekly, monthly, fixed-term or annual trips. There are also different options for bus companies – each pass allows you unlimited travel (for the duration you have paid) with the specified company.

Remember to also take your phone charger with you – most buses have free charging ports.

For one final bus tip, Greater Manchester fairs have come down to £2 for an adult. So it’s currently cheaper to get two singles than a day rider if you’re only doing two trips.

If you’re not sure which one to choose, the finance guys will be happy to discuss it with you.

Traveling by tram

Manchester boasts an impressive tram system, in addition to also having the busiest bus route in Europe.

Like the train, traveling during off-peak hours on a tram will save you some coins. Peak times for trams are after 09:30.

Did you also know that if you are coming from outside Manchester you can use your train ticket to travel on the tram for free? This however only works if you are traveling with a valid train ticket to a Manchester City station and are staying at tram zone 1.