Frequently Asked Questions

Booking Tickets

WHAT DAYS ARE YOU OPEN?

Please click here for a calendar of our services until 23rd July. We hope that after this date we will be able to run a more comprehensive service as restrictions lift.

HOW DOES THE PRICING SYSTEM WORK?

Ticket prices will vary depending on your choice of experience; and work on the basis that you must first purchase a compartment or seating bay in order to travel. This seating is cleaned before travel and is then yours for the duration of your visit.

WHO CAN TRAVEL IN MY GROUP?

Your group must consist of people who are in your bubble and who you are permitted to travel together with according to Government Guidance applicable at time of travel. Compartments will generally hold up to six passengers.

WILL DOGS BE ALLOWED ON BOARD?

Yes. Tickets for dogs will be priced at £3. Note: Dogs will not be allowed in 1st Class Carriages, with the exception of guide dogs.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I HAVE A LARGE FAMILY GROUP?

Most compartments hold up to six passengers. If you need to book for more than six, please telephone our booking office on 01766 516024 to make your booking.

WHAT ABOUT VISITORS WITH ADDITIONAL NEEDS OR RESTRICTED MOBILITY?

We ask that visitors who are travelling in a wheelchair or those with restricted mobility call the booking office; 01766 516024 to book their tickets so we can make sure there is ease of accessibility and sufficient seating space ready prior to your arrival.

CAN I BOOK A 1ST CLASS COMPARTMENT OR CARRIAGE?

Yes. 1st Class compartments and carriages are available on our ‘Gelert Explorer’ and ‘Glaslyn Venturer’ services. Please click here for further information.

CAN I TRAVEL SOLO IN A COMPARTMENT OR A SEATING BAY?

Yes. However, if you are a solo traveller, you must still pay the minimum compartment fee.

CAN I RETURN ON A LATER TRAIN?

No. It is our current policy to clean carriages after each use as part of our Covid-19 safe risk assessment. Once you have chosen your compartment/ seating bay, you must stay in this seating for your visit after which it will be cleaned. We will not therefore be permitting leaving or joining a train, other than the one you are booked for.

CAN I MAKE A SINGLE JOURNEY ON THESE SERVICES?

Yes. However, please note that you will still need to pay the full minimum price for each service.

I WISH TO MAKE A GROUP BOOKING FOR A COACH PARTY

Group bookings are available but are limited due to our compartment system and the current guidelines on bubbles. We are happy to discuss your requirements and fit your group in wherever possible. Please telephone 01766 516024 or email groups@ffwhr.com for further information.

DO I NEED TO PRE-BOOK TICKETS?

Yes. Whilst tickets may be purchased on the day, there will be no guarantee of availability. We encourage everyone to pre-book tickets. Our experience last year was that most trains sold out in advance.

CAN I BOOK TICKETS AT THE BOOKING OFFICE?

Yes. However, whilst tickets can be purchased on the day, there will be no guarantee of availability. We encourage everyone to pre-book tickets. Our experience last year was that most trains sold out in advance.

SHOULD I PRINT OUT MY TICKET?

Both email confirmation of your tickets on your phone or a physical print out of your confirmation will be acceptable, so you can but do not have to. You will need to show your booking reference on arrival at the check in desk.

DO SOCIETY MEMBERS NEED TO PRE-BOOK?

Yes, Ffestiniog Railway Society and Welsh Highland Railway Society members may book on line and use their membership number plus prefix to obtain discounted travel.

WHAT ABOUT PARTNER ORGANISATIONS?

Holders of Rail Staff Travel Privilege cards, HRA InterRail Passes, Great Little Trains of Wales Discount card holders and Talyllyn Railway Society members should contact the booking office on 01766 516024 to check on discount availability and to make bookings.

CAN I USE MY GIFT CARD TO BOOK TICKETS?

Yes. Gift card holders will be able to use their card for booking online. If your booking has been deferred from 2020, please call the booking office on 01766 516024 to reschedule.

For Your Safety

HOW OFTEN WILL THE CARRIAGES BE CLEANED?

Our carriages will be deep cleaned regularly using ‘Zoono’, a long-lasting disinfectant surface sanitiser which offers up to 30 days’ protection. The carriages will also be cleaned by our staff at the end of each service meaning the carriages will be safe and ready for you to enjoy upon arrival.

DO I NEED TO WEAR A FACE COVERING?

We ask that visitors wear face coverings when using our station facilities and boarding the train. Once on board you should wear a mask if travelling in our modern style carriages on the ‘Gelert Explorer’ or the ‘Glaslyn Venturer’. If travelling in a family compartment on a heritage service, such as the ‘Woodland Wanderer’ or ‘Mountain Prince’, masks are not mandatory once you are on board.

Catering

WILL THERE BE CATERING SERVICE ON BOARD THE TRAINS?

No, there will be no catering service on board the trains. However, both the ‘Gelert Explorer’ and ‘Glaslyn Venturer’ trains have pre-book hamper options available to purchase when you book your tickets.

WILL SPOONER’S CAFÉ BE OPEN?

Yes. Spooner’s café will be open for limited menu takeaway orders and will serve both passengers and general public. Takeaway food can be taken on board for the journey. However, there will be no evening or bar service until restrictions ease.

WILL TEAROOMS AT TAN-Y-BWLCH BE OPEN?

Yes. Tearooms at Tan-y-Bwlch will be open for limited menu takeaway orders and will serve both passengers and general public. Takeaway food can be taken on board for the journey.

WILL CAERNARFON STATION CAFÉ DE WINTON BE OPEN?

Yes. Café De Winton will be open for table service and takeaway orders and will serve both passengers and general public. Both pre-booked hampers and takeaway food can be taken on board for the journey.

CAN I USE MY ‘EAT AND DRINK’ CARD?

Yes. The ‘Eat and Drink’ card can still be used for discounts in our catering outlets but not for pre-order hampers.

CAN I BRING MY OWN FOOD FOR THE JOURNEY?

Yes, you can bring your own food for the journey but it cannot be eaten at our café tables.

Other Facilities

WHERE CAN I PARK AT PORTHMADOG STATION?

Car parking is available at the nearby Llyn Bach car park, a short walk away from Porthmadog Harbour Station. Parking is free for Railway passengers. Follow the directions on your booking confirmation. Disabled badge holders may park at the station and should make themselves known to a station host on arrival.

WHERE CAN I PARK AT CAERNARFON STATION?

Car parking is available in the nearby Castle car park £5.50 per day or at Tyre Centre car park opposite the station which is £3.50 per day (prices correct Mar 2021). There are spaces for disabled badge holders in the castle car park opposite the station building.

ARE THERE TOILET FACILITIES AT THE STATIONS?

Yes. There are toilet facilities at Porthmadog Harbour Station, Tan-y-Bwlch Station, Caernarfon Station and Beddgelert Station. Social Distancing signs will be clearly marked when queuing for the toilet facilities. All have accessible toilets while Caernarfon station also has a Changing Places facility.

ARE THERE TOILET FACILITIES ON BOARD THE TRAIN?

Our ‘Woodland Wanderer’ and ‘Mountain Prince’ services do NOT have on-board toilet facilities; however, toilet facilities are available during the layover at Tan-y-Bwlch Station.

Our ‘Gelert Explorer’ and ‘Glaslyn Venturer’ have 2 small on-board toilet facilities for emergency use, however we recommend you use the station toilets wherever possible.

WILL THERE BE STORAGE AVAILABILITY FOR A PRAM?

Yes. However, please note there is limited space for storing large prams in the Guard’s carriages on our trins but folding pushchairs may be stored under or near to your seat. NOTE: Please make sure they do not obstruct the walkway through the carriage.

WILL PORTHMADOG HARBOUR STATION SHOP BE OPEN?

Our Porthmadog Harbour Station Shop will be open to both passengers and the general public as soon as trains start running. It is always open for mail order services.

WILL THE CAERNARFON STATION SHOP BE OPEN?

Our Caernarfon Station shop will be open to both passengers and the general public once trains start running.

General

WHICH LOCOMOTIVES WILL BE OPERATING ON THE SERVICES?

We are unable to specify which loco will be on a particular train due to the fluid nature of the rostering. The ‘Gelert Explorer’ and ‘Glaslyn Venturer’ will be hauled by one of our Beyer Garratt Locomotives. The ‘Woodland Wanderer’ and ‘Mountain Prince’ will be hauled by one of our smaller locomotives such as Welsh Pony, Prince, Palmerston, Blanche or Lyd. We do reserve the right to change motive power at short notice which may very occasionally be a diesel if there is nothing else that is available.

ARE YOUR SPECIAL EVENTS GOING AHEAD?

We will continue to monitor Welsh Government advice with regards to events and crowd gatherings and will therefore make an announcement on upcoming events shortly. We can confirm however, that we will not be holding ‘Cwrw ar y Cledrau’, our popular beer festival in 2021.