Coronavirus (COVID-19) Travel Update

dropdown-aboutus Important message

You’ll find answers to the most frequently asked questions on our website, but if you need to talk, we’re here to help.

We’re working hard to help all our customers who have been impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19). As a result, we’re currently experiencing extremely high call volumes so it may take longer than usual to speak to us.

If you would like to apply for a refund, we highly recommend contacting us online where possible. For tickets purchased online, simply email your original booking confirmation plus your request for a refund to refunds@stanstedexpress.com. For tickets bought at a ticket office or from an agent, please see our Refunds and Compensation page.

Safer Travel Pledge

The health and wellbeing of our passengers and staff is our top priority. If you have to travel, we want to ensure that you are able to do so safely and with confidence. This is our safer travel pledge to you. 

We are... 

  • Maximising space 
    • Running more trains and carriages to make extra room and help with social distancing
    • New social distancing signs on trains and stations to help you get around safely  
    • Designing our timetables to maximise services at the busiest stations and times of day and to reduce delays 
  • Boosting Cleaning 
    • Cleaning trains and stations - 14,000 carriages and 2,500 stations - more frequently  
    • Using powerful anti-viral cleaning products to give added protection 
  • Helping with hygiene 
    • Replenishing soap in our stations and trains more frequently 
    • Installing hand sanitiser points in over 300 stations and vending machines in over 150 stations that sell face coverings and sanitiser
  • Improving information
    • Launching a new service that alerts you to crowding and disruption on your journey before you travel – sign up at www.nationalrail.co.uk
    • Having up to 2,500 extra people available as necessary at key locations to answer your questions or concerns so you can get on your way   

To help us keep you safe, you can...  

  • Avoid busy times - Travel at quieter times and keep your distance wherever possible  
  • Wash your hands – Carry hand sanitiser and wash your hands before and after your journey 
  • Bring a face covering– Make sure you wear a face covering through your journey unless you are exempt - find out more here
  • Check before you travel – Plan ahead by clicking here

You can find out more about what we’re doing to keep you safe here.



Your safety, wellbeing and ability to get to your destination on time are our top priorities.

Current Government advice is to avoid public transport. We would like to assure all customers that we are doing everything possible to keep you safe if your journey is necessary. There are also things we need you to do to help us help you travel safely.

Plan ahead, consider others and stay safe.


What Stansted Express is doing to protect customers

Since the start of the coronavirus or COVID-19 outbreak, we have taken steps to ensure the safety and wellbeing of customers and staff and to reduce the spread of coronavirus.

We are:

  • Continuing to step up cleaning of our trains and stations, paying particular attention to high touch areas such as push buttons, door handles and grab rails.
  • Keeping soap, water and toilet paper topped up in our toilets on stations and trains.
  • Keeping toilets open wherever possible.
  • Making trains as long as possible, so that passengers can spread out throughout them.
  • Constantly monitoring passenger numbers so that we can make trains longer or increase the frequency if necessary.
  • Making it clear how you can keep your distance at stations with signs, posters, floor markings and tape.
  • Putting in queue systems and one-way systems where necessary to control the number of people on platforms or in stations at a time.
  • Discouraging the use of cash when buying tickets.
  • Deploying staff at some busier stations to help you follow all appropriate social distancing guidelines.
  • Following all Government and Public Health England advice on keeping our customers safe.
  • Closing some facilities such as waiting rooms and some seating so that you can maintain appropriate social distancing.


What you can do to travel more safely

You can help control coronavirus and travel safely by:

You should not travel at all if you:

If you need to travel by train, we will do everything we can to make sure you get to where you need to be safely and on time. Please familiarise yourself with the measures put in place to help safeguard people’s health:

  • Wear a face covering on public transport. The government has made the wearing of face coverings mandatory on public transport (including on trains) and we are also asking that you wear face coverings on all of our stations. This helps in those areas on stations where social distancing is more difficult. Details of the government guidance can be found here.
  • Wash your hands before and after wearing a face covering. Whilst there is liquid soap in our station and on-train toilets, there is no hand sanitiser available, so please bring some with you when you travel.
  • Children under 11 are not required to wear face coverings.
  • People with a disability or illness that means that they cannot wear a face covering are not required to do so. There is no specific list of medical conditions, but this can include people who can't wear one with asthma, PTSD, etc. Please use your own judgement and act responsibly. If you have disability or illness and can still wear a face covering, please do so.
  • We recognise it may be difficult for a customer who has a hearing impairment, has a learning disability or dementia to be able to hear a member of staff who is wearing a face covering. We also know that some customers may need to lip read. If this is the case for you, please be assured that our staff have been trained to respond to your needs and can safely remove a mask to speak to you, or write down instructions for you, if that’s helpful, whilst maintaining a safe social distance. Please just let them know how they can help and they will do their best to assist.
  • Follow all Government and NHS hygiene guidance: wash your hands, cough or sneeze into your elbow or tissue – and throw tissues in the bin. There is liquid soap available at our stations and on-train toilets but there is no hand sanitiser so please bring this with you when you travel. We are in the process of distributing hand santisers to stations and will update our website with more information on where and where these will be available.Social distancing - Keep 2 metres apart where possible on our trains and stations
  • Don’t leave your rubbish on the train or at the station, unless it’s in the bin so that our cleaners can spend more time cleaning than litter-picking.
  • Follow instructions about how you can keep your distance – listen to announcements, read posters and follow floor markings.
  • Comply with our queuing and one-way systems – they’re there to protect you and keep you safe.
  • Listen to our staff. They’re trying to keep us all safe.
  • Buy your ticket online or on our App on your phone and before you get to the station preferably, so that you minimise your time at the station.
  • Although you have to buy your ticket in advance, you are not required to make a reservation. Please remember to socially distance when choosing a seat whilst on the train.
  • If you need to buy your ticket at the station, please use contactless payment. We can still accept cash if you have no other means of payment.
  • Consider travelling at a less busy time. If you’re an employer, consider changing working hours to avoid peak times?
  • If you're heading to and from London Liverpool Street, Stratford or Tottenham Hale, you may be able to find a less busier train here. We aim to update this page twice a week with recent analysis, which may help people predict busier trains.
  • For the interest of your safety, when stations or trains are at full social distancing capacity, station teams may at times prevent customers from entering a station, platform or from boarding a specific service if social distancing is being severely compromised. If this occurs during service disruption, our control teams will decide on a train by train basis whether to remove scheduled stops to reduce the impact on social distancing as best as possible. Please ensure you plan your journey well ahead and keep back-up forms of travel in mind in the case the last train is full or if you cannot take a later train.
  • Stand back and let people off the train before you board the train.
  • Use all available doors and move down the train. Please get on and off the train as quickly as you can.
  • Don’t congregate at the front of the train on the approach to London Liverpool Street or Stansted Airport.
  • If you’re wearing a face mask or gloves, please don’t discard them on the train or at our stations.
  • Only one person in a lift at a time, please.
  • Our food and drink retailers may not be open, so remember to bring a bottle of water and any food you may need for your journey.

Please spread out throughout the train


Reduced Stansted Express service until further notice

We have a reduced timetable in place at the moment, as passenger numbers are down significantly. We want to provide the most reliable service possible for key workers and others who need to use our trains. From Monday 18 May, we will be running two trains an hour to and from Stansted Airport and London Liverpool Street. 

The revised timetables will be updated once a week, usually on a Wednesday or Thursday and published here.

More information on what Stansted Express is doing to keep rail passengers safe during Covid-19 can be found here. We encourage that you become familiar with the measures we have put in place so that we can stop the spread and safeguard people’s health.


icon-pdfDownload Revised Timetable - Saturday 04 July


icon-pdfDownload Revised Timetable - Sunday 05 July


icon-pdfDownload Revised Timetable - Monday 06 to Friday 10 July 2020


Assisted Travel, we’re here to help

Due to the ongoing coronavirus situation the assisted travel support centre is operating under revised opening hours. If you need mobility assistance from staff on your journey please call:

Monday to Friday between 08:00 – 18:00 on 0800 028 2878 (free of charge) or via Textphone and Minicom: 18001 0800 028 2878.

If you are calling after 18:00 and need assistance for next day travel or calling at the weekend for travel Sunday or Monday please contact the National Rail Enquiries support team on 0800 0223720.

Please remember government guidance is to avoid using public transport where possible.

You can also still travel if you haven’t pre-booked assistance. 

If you need to speak to us about your booking, train times or service information, call us on 0345 600 7245 (or +44 345 600 7245 from outside the UK) and select option 8.

We can only respond to phone calls and emails received in English. We’re sorry if this causes any inconvenience.

Check before you travel

You can check live departure and platform information on our Live Departures page. 


If you arrive at your destination more than 15 minutes late, you can claim compensation through our delay repay scheme. You’ll need your ticket and journey details to make a claim. Please visit our Refunds page for more information.

Stay in the know

We would strongly recommend following us on twitter @Stansted_Exp to keep up to date with train running information on the day.

Temporary changes to ticket offices

Due to the current situation some station ticket offices may have reduced hours.

To cut down on time spent at the station and help us maintain social distancing, please buy your ticket online or using the Stansted Express app before you set off.

Stansted AirportOpen
Liverpool StreetOpen
Tottenham Hale

Open with amended hours:
M-F 06.30 – 20.00
Sat: 07.00-19.00, Sun 08.00-1900

Coronavirus ticket refund update

The vast majority of refunds are being processed within 28 days of receipt, however a small number of refunds may take longer to process as we require additional information from our customers to successfully complete the refund.

Due to the current situation with the Covid-19 coronavirus we are changing the rules on refunds and changes to travel plans with immediate effect, in line with national rail industry policy.

If your refund claim has been submitted later than the normal deadline date as a direct consequence of an illness which specifically prevented earlier submission, your claim will still be accepted. 

Walk-up tickets (Singles and Returns, not Advance)

  • If you have a walk-up ticket, bought at a Stansted Express station or from the Stansted Express website or app, but you decide not to travel, you can receive a full refund, with no admin fee. This applies to any tickets already booked and any new bookings made between now and 31 May 2020.
  • If you have bought a ticket online you will be able to request a refund online. No fee will be charged. Simply Email your original booking confirmation plus your request for a refund to refunds@stanstedexpress.com.
  • If you have purchased your tickets booked from a non Stansted Express ticket office or online retailer then you will need to contact whoever sold you the ticket to arrange the refund.

Advance tickets

  • Advance tickets purchased prior to 07:00 Monday 23 March 2020 can be refunded in full with no admin fee.
  • You can also change the date of travel for a future date free of charge (the normal £10 admin fee will be waived). However, there are no refunds on these tickets if you decide not to use them. When changing the date, any difference in fare will still be charged, you can only change for a date that is up to 12 weeks ahead. No refund will be given if the new journey results in a lower fare.
  • The origin station, destination station and operator must remain the same. Travel can be re-booked up to 31 August 2020, but note that Advance bookings open 12 weeks in advance of a travel date. The fee free changes apply as travel dates become available 12 weeks in advance.

Season tickets

If you have a smart card season which you bought online or on the app please complete this online form. This includes journeys to zones 1-6, 2-6, 3-6, 4-6, 5-6 https://www.greateranglia.co.uk/form/smartcard-seasons-refund-request-form.

For refunds of paper seasons bought online or at ticket offices as well as Smart season tickets bought at ticket offices - please use this form https://www.greateranglia.co.uk/form/station-seasons-refund-request-form.

In the meantime, please be patient, our staff are doing their best in difficult circumstances. We've had so many enquiries it's too much for our telephone call handlers to process and customers were still waiting for their calls to be answered when the automatic cut-off disconnected them. We're really sorry if you were one of those customers - we know how frustrating it was.​

If you have bought a season ticket through Abellio Corporate Travel, you can find out more information on online refunds here - https://www.abelliocorporatetravel.com/refunds

The normal refund terms and conditions will remain the same. A £10 admin fee will still be charged. Please note until 11 May 2020, you will be able to backdate your refund claim to the last date you travelled, but no earlier than Tuesday 17 March 2020. From Tuesday 12 May 2020, these refunds can be backdated up to a maximum 56 calendar days from when they were submitted if customers were unable to travel due to the impact of Coronavirus. This will be a rolling 56-day backdating period, until further notice.

Please note that this is a consistent national approach which applies across all train operators in England.

Annual Season tickets with more than 7 weeks remaining are entitiled to a refund. Use this Season ticket refund calculator  to work out an estimate for the refund amount you'll get for an Annual or longer than one month Season Ticket.

Plus Bus seasons tickets can also be refunded. These can be backdated up to a maximum 56 days from the date they are submitted, if customers were unable to travel due to the impact of Coronavirus. This will be a rolling 56-day backdating period, until further notice.


There is currently no change to the validity period and expiry dates for annual railcards. If that situation changes, details will be advised accordingly.

Rail Travel Vouchers

If you have a Rail Travel Voucher that has an expiry date between 17 March 2020 and 16 September 2020, this may be accepted for a maximum of 6 months after the original expiry date e.g. an RTV that expires on 10 June 2020, may continue to be accepted up to and including 09 December 2020. Where a voucher states that it can be exchanged for cash, this can also be done with expired vouchers.

Car Park Season Tickets

If you have purchased a season ticket for parking at a Greater Anglia car park, please contact customer.services@dashcardservices.com. If you have an account with them, you can log in here.

If you have any issues, please contact the NCP customer service team directly on 03450507080 or you visit the the NCP online contact us page - https://ncp.co.uk/help-centre/contact-us/.

If you purchased an annual car park season ticket and have been unable to use it due to the COVID-19 situation, NCP will extend the validity by four months. For example, if your ticket expires 30 June 2020, your ticket will be extended until 31 October 2020. NCP will continue to monitor and review the situation with Greater Anglia.

Scholar pass

If you purchased a scholar pass for the full academic year, please contact businesstravel@greateranglia.co.uk.

There are no refunds available for termly passes for the spring term.

Additional information

  • All Season Tickets can be refunded at any time. These refunds can be backdated up to a maximum 56 days from the date they are submitted, if customers were unable to travel due to the impact of Coronavirus. This will be a rolling 56-day backdating period, until further notice. This includes all seasons, including car parking and Plus Bus seasons.
  • Our web support team based overseas are unfortunately going into lockdown from 1800 on the 20th March 2020 for the foreseeable future. So where you cannot refund or change a ticket bought online yourself through your online account you will need to email sales.support.greateranglia@trainsfares.co.uk as the usual web support number will not work.
  • For any other enquiries, you can submit these via https://www.greateranglia.co.uk/contact-us/contact-forms/customer-relations.
  • Only contact us via email regarding non season refunds if you are within 72 hours of travel. This is to help ease the strain on the contact centre staff. Where possible we advise doing this yourself online where the option is available to you.
  • Refunding/Changing E & M-tickets - log in to change or refund E & M-tickets online.
  • Next Day Delivery - Royal Mail can no longer guarantee Next Day delivery. As a result of this, we’ve removed this delivery option.

Useful links

Symptoms of coronavirus and Government advice about it can be found here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

Find out more about how we’re working together with other train companies to support the efforts to delay the spread of coronavirus, and to keep services running as normal, on the National Rail Enquires website.

Find out how to get a refund.

Find the most up-to-date information about Stansted Airport on London Stansted Airport’s website.

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