We would like to flag up that crowds of rugby and football fans will be heading to Cardiff over this weekend (5th-6th September). All our available trains will be out running, however services into Cardiff will be busy and we cannot guarantee a seat.
Due to Network Rail improvement work at Cardiff Central station on Sunday, there will be some platform changes and re-timings to services and a post-match queuing system in place. There will also be crowd management at Grangetown Station. Please check your journey plans before you travel
Rugby World Cup matches will be taking place at various venues across England and Wales and during this period train services across the whole of the network will be busy as rugby fans from home and abroad use rail services to travel to support their teams.
The Rugby World Cup 2015 organisers have put together a comprehensive travel guide for fans and general rail travellers alike which covers useful travel information for all the venues hosting Rugby World Cup 2015 matches
click here for more information.
Travel Advice for the
Arriva Trains Wales Network
If you are travelling on the Arriva Trains Network during the Rugby World Cup, some services and stations are likely to be busier especially on match days. Four of the venues are on our network (Cardiff, Birmingham, Manchester and Gloucester) but fans will also be using our services to link to other train operator services
for example our South Wales services are likely to be busy on the Twickenham match days as fans travel to connect into the First Great Western London services.
Match Travel Advice
We will be issuing specific travel advice for Arriva Trains Wales services for each match on the Arriva Trains Wales as the tournament progresses. Keep checking this page for more details.
Forthcoming events at the Millennium Stadium and other venues in Cardiff.
If you are travelling to the Millennium Stadium for an event by train the following information will help make your journey safe and straightforward.
Cardiff Central Railway Station is just 400 yards from the Millennium Stadium, opposite Cardiff Bus Station.
On major event days Cardiff Central Station will be extremely busy and for passengers safety and security a queuing system may be in operation at the station after the event.
Passengers who are attending an event are advised to allow plenty of time to travel, and where possible, to arrive early in Cardiff and soak up the atmosphere. After the event, passengers are advised to return to Cardiff Central Station as soon as the event has finished.
Where a queuing system is in place passengers may have to queue for up to 2 hours depending on the size of the event. Please click here for the
Queuing Plan PDF (Adobe Acrobat PDF)
Buy your Train Tickets before you travel
Cardiff Central Railway Station operates revenue protection ticket barriers and customers are advised to purchase their return tickets to avoid further delays when returning to the station and it is usually cheaper than purchasing two single tickets. All passengers must have a correct ticket for the journey they are taking and it is their responsibility to have one. Read our
Revenue Enforcement Policy here.
The safety of our passengers is paramount. Barrier systems in place within the station perimeter are installed for crowd control and passenger safety.
Reservations on trains
Some services are closed or not available for reservations on event days.
If you require assistance when travelling by train please book in advance by ringing our Journey Care Line on 0845 300 3005, contact the Customer Relations Department on
03333 211 202 or email
email@example.com. If you haven't been able to book in advance please make yourself known to a member of platform staff or a crowd safety steward so we can assist you with your return journey.
Please check this website for details of engineering work that may affect your train journey to and from Cardiff
Passengers who are travelling to an event on a chartered train need to receive the following information from the Charter organiser before travelling:
Please note that Charter trains will depart at their booked time, and will not be held if passengers are not on board when the train is due to leave.
There are some events when alcohol consumption on trains and at stations is not permitted. Please refer to specific event details, contact our Customer Relations Department on 03333 211 202 or email
For more information on Cardiff and to find accommodation visit
Top Ten Tips
Frequently Asked Questions
Why are trains so busy going to an event – don’t you lay on extra trains?
For each major event at the Stadium we use all the trains we have available to us. We also suspend routine train maintenance to ensure the maximum availability of rolling stock. Where possible we will also reallocate trains from parts of the area unaffected by the event to Cardiff to provide additional capacity.
Our Special Events Manager then allocates the additional capacity we have both to and from the event based on the historical passenger flows. This is our best estimate of what capacity will be needed and where. But as we offer a walk up service we occasionally get this wrong when more travel to or from a destination than expected.
Why might I have to stand when coming to an event or coming home afterwards?
Coming to an event, we offer a walk up service on our trains and there may be more passengers using a service than we have seats for. Therefore overcrowding can result and some passengers may have to stand. The only remedy to this would be to make each service on an event day reservation only but this would be both difficult to enforce (many of our stations are unstaffed) and would severely reduce the number of people we could bring to an event. We believe the majority of our customers would prefer the short duration discomfort of standing rather than not being able to use the train to attend the event.
For services after an event we will load carriages to standing levels and will continue to do this until we are certain that we have accommodated all those that wish to travel back with us. Again if we did not do this then regrettably many passengers may be left behind.
Why do passengers have to queue outside Cardiff Central station after an event before boarding a train?
When a major event take place, such as a concert or international match, we regularly cater for up to 35,000 passengers and a queuing system is essential in order to ensure that all passengers are able to enter the station and board their train safely. Crowd control measures, including the use of barriers, are used as standard across the rail industry for major events.
How long will I wait in the queue?
The number of passengers who wish to travel by train is increasing in popularity each year. As we operate a walk up service rather than by reservation only, it’s first come first served in the queue and you may therefore have to wait before boarding.
Our average queuing time when joining the queue is 45 minutes. This regrettably means that for some passengers queuing times exceed this and maybe over an hour.
We therefore recommend that people leave additional time for their journey and dress appropriately for the time of year and weather.
Will there be toilet facilities for those in the queue?
We would like to be able to provide such facilities but with many thousands of people in the limited space available at the front and rear of the station, we regret we are unable to safely accommodate space for toilets.
However, each platform at Cardiff Central has passenger toilets as well as all of our trains. As it would potentially cause operational problems we do not normally allow those in the queuing system to jump the queue to use the station toilets.
When will I get to the platform?
Passengers are directed from the queues onto the correct platform by station staff only when a train becomes available. This avoids the need to have many thousands of passengers queuing on platforms which may be unsafe and lead to problems as too many passengers try and board each service as it arrives.
How can I find out more about the plans in place at the station prior to a big event?
Please visit the
Arriva Trains Wales website where information is posted prior to events taking place. Passengers will be advised whether crowd control measures are in place, how busy train services are likely to be and whether additional time for your journey is recommended. Posters will be displayed in stations with information and local press and radio stations regularly report this information so stay tuned!
How can I find out about train times?
A special events timetable, outside of the normal published timetable, is used to cater for increased numbers of passengers who wish to travel and a member of station staff will make regular announcements to passengers while waiting in the queue.
Why is Queen Street station closed after an event?
We found that those with local knowledge went direct to Queen Street station after an event and therefore the trains coming into Cardiff central were already full. Also for Valley Line services going up the valleys those at Queen Street were unable to board. Also Queen Street station has very limited space for a queuing system and it was not possible to accommodate this safely.
Why do you allow so many events in Cardiff on the same day?
This is a decision made by the local authority and the stadium management but clearly the number of train services we can operate is finite.
Is anything being done to improve the future event management at Central station?
Our event arrangements have been fine-tuned over a number of years and work well given the inevitable constraints of coping with many thousands of extra people.
We are not complacent and we continue to review our arrangements, taking customer feedback into consideration to improve our future service. For example, we are currently in discussions with Cardiff Council and the Welsh Government to look at the feasibility of a canopy for those waiting in a queue.
Our record over the last 12 years in getting people home safely has been excellent. We are pleased that we have been visited recently by the Olympic Delivery Authority who looked at our arrangements as an example of good practice.