Travelling by train in Ireland is a decent enough experience. Iarnród Éireann, or Irish Rail for the english speakers, operates throughout the country and most trains feature standard class and first class. There is an upgrade trick you should know about though.

It is possible to get a first class ticket for a cheaper rate than the online fares would suggest. It’s hidden on the website, so only those in the know will realise it’s there.

Tickets on Irish Rail

Finding tickets on the Irish Rail website is quite easy. You pop in your origin and destination, your travel date and off you go. On a trip from Dublin Heuston to Cork, you would see something like the below.

I would usually book the cheapest fare, as I don’t think paying an extra €32.50 for first class is worth it. However, you can get it much cheaper than this.

The Secret Upgrade Trick

Once you have purchased your cheap ticket for €21.49, you then need to book a second time. Go back to the main page of the website, enter your origin, destination and dates, then click Free Travel Pass or Valid Ticket.

When you do that, you will get a pop up. Part of the pop up says, “Customers who have a valid standard class ticket but wish to upgrade to First Class should also use this section”. And so we shall!

Once done, you’ll be back at the main page, so click on the orange Go button and it will display a new set of results. It is similar to before, but with one difference.

You will see that the upgrade is being offered for €12.50, which is a saving of €20.00 over the usual price. I think that is quite good value really and well worth doing. When I was doing this, it said “No availability” and showed no trains, so I just selected the day before and went back again and it worked just fine.

Overall Thoughts

First class on Irish Rail has three different variations. On services on routes like Dublin to Limerick, it is called Premier Class. For the route between Dublin and Cork, it is a more elevated product called CityGold. The secret upgrade trick works on both of these types of trains.

Those travelling to Northern Ireland will be on the Enterprise train. You will be pleased to know that the same method works for this service between Dublin and Belfast as well.

Did you know about this upgrade trick on Irish Rail? Will you use it now you know about it? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.

Like planes? See my “Does anyone remember” series.
Flight reviews your thing? Mine are all indexed here.
Follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Featured image by William Murphy via Wikimedia Commons.