After a few technical issues this morning the VTEC seat sale is now live. This is the first sale performed by Virgin Trains East Coast and is similar to those previously offered by East Coast. Fares start at £10 for London - Leeds or York in standard class.

What you need to know

  • You MUST book via the special sale landing page. Booking via the regular booking page or on another website will not display the sale fares.
  • The sooner you book the better, the sale ends on the 28th August but once the seats are sold on a particular service they're gone.
  • Travel must be from 5 September to 13 November excluding 26-27 September, 3, 4, 9 and 10 October, 23 October to 1 November (inclusive).
  • The fares are not available north of Edinburgh. Not sure why those living on the lines to Aberdeen, Glasgow or Inverness are excluded but they are!
  • It is a flat fare, no railcard or child discounts are available on top of this.

What about Nectar?

As we want the return of a decent loyalty scheme (see the comparison of Nectar and East Coast Rewards) we advise people using the Virgin Trains East Coast site to not add a Nectar card number to their booking. The more people who have a Nectar card linked to their account the more they can claim the scheme is a success. So if you've added a Nectar card to your profile we recommend you go into your profile and remove it. As the fares are so low the points you earn will only be worth pennies anyway. Depending on your preference either set your earning preference to no loyalty scheme or Virgin Atlantic Flying Club.

If you really want Nectar points (as some say, they're better than nothing even though they're a joke compared to East Coast Rewards) we recommend doing all your non-sale rail bookings through a FirstGroup website such as First Great Western. The reason is First gives Nectar points on ALL rail travel, whereas Virgin only give points on their own services. Not earning Nectar points on the sale fares booked through the Virgin Trains East Coast website is a worthy sacrifice for a longer term goal.

Finally, let's not give up on our aim to have a decent loyalty scheme on the East Coast and sign our petition.