England: Like a Local – Efficient Train Travel, with Peter Greenberg [Video]

Rail Europe recently had the opportunity to partner with legendary travel reporter Peter Greenberg for a radio show that was recorded on board the Eurostar train and aired on April 28, 2012. During his visit to Britain, Peter Greenberg put together two video clips highlighting the best ways to get around London and England. We couldn’t agree more with Peter – taking the train is indeed the best way to experience Britain like a local! Check out below the first video of the series which he filmed at London’s St Pancras station and be sure to visit www.petergreenberg.com for more information about his radio show.

Video Transcript:

Hi I’m Peter Greenberg and this is England: Like a Local. As North Americans we really don’t often think of train transportation as a viable option. But in Britain, it’s really the best way to get around.

Think about it: Getting to and from the airport can be time consuming, and those luggage fees really add up. And forget renting a car – trust me, it’s not as easy as it looks to drive on the other side of the road.

I’m here at St. Pancras station, one of the busiest train terminals in the heart of London—and, as you can see, not just for tourists. Locals get around this way – and now you can navigate the trains of England…Like a Local.

Here’s an example. I want to go to Canterbury Cathedral from London’s St. Pancras Station. This is one world’s largest and most famous cathedrals – a World Heritage Site in fact. It’s just about 60 miles from London…but you can’t fly there, and I don’t recommend driving. So….take the train! It’s more economical – and you won’t have to deal with the high price of gas that comes with renting a car.

Here are some tips on how to navigate the process like a local:

  • Plan your itinerary ahead of time—even before you leave North America. Rail Europe provides an easy way to plan everything from start to finish, with maps, schedules and fares online at Rail Europe.com for trains operating in Britain.
  • If you’re on the go, use the Rail Europe iPhone App. You can plan exactly where you want to go and which stations will connect you. Booking early is usually the best way to access all trains – and avoid waiting in line.
  • Next, check out the Oyster Card – the traveler’s version of a local pass. It’s the cheapest way to get single or multiple train tickets on one simple card. And it works on both the London inter city Tube and National Rail services. And – of course – there’s an app for that! The Oyster Balance app lets you purchase tickets and credit right on your smartphone.
  • Want to know how to avoid the crowds? The locals know the secrets, and now you can too. Tube Exits gives you the inside track on which car to sit in so you’re closest to the station exit—or the “way out” – as the locals say it – for all London stations.

Bottom line: The British rail system is efficient, it gets you straight from the city center to the sites, and you can figure out everything before you even leave home…so there’s no getting lost, and no wasted time. And that’s traveling like a local.

About the Author


Jackie is a freelance writer from Los Angeles currently living in Brooklyn. She worked as a travel consultant at Rail Europe for two years before switching over to Marketing & Community Manager (focusing on social media) in June 2014. In her free time Jackie travels whenever possible & maintains a personal travel blog at www.jackietravels.com.

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