This information applied only before 28 February 2015, although if East Coast Rewards ever makes a return it will become relevant again

If you travel regularly by train, even if it's not by East Coast, it is easy to maximise your points earning. If you're purchasing East Coast Advance tickets there's no minimum spend but if you're only buying tickets for other operators the minimum spend in your transaction must be £22 before earning points.

My golden rule is to put all rail travel through even tickets that can be purchased from the station on the day. If the tickets I'm purchasing that day are only low value I try and think ahead and combine them with other tickets I might need in the future. It's the total transaction that needs to be over £22 not the individual tickets.

Another hint is purchasing extras on the site also earns you points. If you're travelling East Coast the site will normally offer you catering vouchers (a £4 voucher is worth £5 on board), if you plan to eat on the train it's worth purchasing these. They're valid both on the buffet and the trolley. They also sell PlusBus tickets to certain destinations which are good value if you're using the bus at your destination and First Class lounge access if you're buying a First Class ticket that does not have complimentary access.

You can also use the East Coast site for booking Heathrow Express tickets although it's important to remember these tickets cannot be collected from Heathrow but can be collected from any regular National Rail station (including Paddington, you collect from the regular rail ticket machines not the Heathrow Express ones) or posted to you.

Other airport express services such as the Gatwick Express and Stansted Express can also be purchased through East Coast. These tickets can be collected from their respective airports.

It's still not too late to Refer a Friend to East Coast Rewards and you'll both receive a bonus. Follow the advice in the article Topping up your East Coast Rewards balance to fast track yourself to rewards if you don't think you'll make enough out of regular travel.

Don't forget other things such as booking for friends/family who aren't interested in loyalty schemes or if you're travelling with a group then offer to make all the arrangements so you can enjoy the rewards.

While East Coast Rewards is active we should continue to direct all rail spend towards the site. There's no better rail loyalty programme in the UK.

If you'd like to show your support to saving East Coast Rewards please use the links at the top of the page to follow us on Twitter and spread our hash tag #SaveEastCoastRewards