Frequently Asked Questions

On the train

You can take your bike on any Northern train if there is space. All trains can accommodate up to two bikes and space is allocated on a first come, first served basis - we can't reserve space for bicycles.

There is no extra charge for bringing your bike.

Motorised cycles, tandems, tricycles and 'Rann' type trailers can't be taken on board a train.

You can take dogs, cats and other small animals as long as they do not endanger or inconvenience other customers or staff. Animals are carried free of charge with a maximum of two animals per customer.

Dogs must be kept on a lead at all times unless they are in a pet carrier.

Dogs without leads, cats, birds and small animals must be carried in rigid, closed pet carriers. Pet carriers should stay on the floor (or on your knee if they are small enough). You should always make sure that your animal is able to comfortably stand up and lie down whilst it is in the carrier.

Under the railway byelaws, we can refuse to take any animal. If another customer objects to its presence, you and your animal must move to another part of the train.

For safety reasons we can't take any mobility scooters on our trains unless they are able to be folded down before you board, and carried on like luggage. Please ask platform staff for assistance if you need help when boarding the train with your folded down mobility scooter.

Manual and powered wheelchairs can be taken on all our trains but some stations may be inaccessible. Please call Passenger Assistance on 0800 138 5560 or use our online form for advice on alternative arrangements and to book assistance.

You can also check the accessibility of any station on the Northern network on our stations page, or for stations run by other operators, visit the National Rail website.

It is against the law to smoke on any train, or at any station. You can be prosecuted and fined if you are caught.

For the comfort of other passengers, we do not allow electronic cigarettes to be used at any of our stations or on any of our services.

You are allowed to consume alcohol on our trains; however, we do not tolerate any anti-social behaviour.

Under the railway byelaws, if you are deemed to be intoxicated we may ask you to leave the train or station.

You cannot reserve seats on Northern trains. You can reserve seats on many other train operators' services and, if available, we will automatically try to reserve a seat free of charge. If a seat cannot be reserved at the time of booking, it will be because of one of the following reasons:

  • the train operator does not offer seat reservations (usually on shorter routes)
  • the train operator has not made seat reservations available
  • the seats that are reservable are fully booked.

Northern is investing over £1bn in new state of the art, 100 mph trains, refurbishing existing stock to 'as new' condition and removing old pacer trains!

Read all about our exciting plans for your railway here.