Press release details

Trainline launches crowdsourced app feature, Crowd Alerts, to help customers flag busy trains to each other

July 2, 2020 at 10:00 AM CEST
  • Crowd Alerts helps Trainline’s customer community share real-time feedback on whether it’s possible to social distance on a specific train
  • Trial data on Northern journeys shows that it’s possible to social distance on 90%* of trains

LONDON, Thursday 2nd July 2020 – Today, Trainline, Europe’s leading train and coach app, has launched a nationwide beta-test of Crowd Alerts, a crowdsourced feature in its app to help customers alert their fellow travellers if it’s not possible to social distance on a specific train.

The feature, called Crowd Alerts, is available for all Trainline app users from today. It’s designed to enable the Trainline customer community to alert one another if certain parts of a train (front, middle and back) are too busy for social distancing.

Data from a trial of the feature, which has been running in Trainline’s app for the last two weeks on Northern journeys only, shows that during this period customers shared feedback that it was possible to social distance on 90% of trains.

Crowd Alerts works when customers tap the ‘live tracker’ button for an upcoming journey in Trainline’s app. A pop-up message asks the customer to confirm whether social distancing is possible on their train by clicking a ‘thumbs up’ or ‘thumbs down’ button.

If the customer clicks ‘thumbs down’ they will be asked to share whether they are in the front, middle or back of the train. If a customer shares feedback to say social distancing isn’t possible, a bubble will

crowd image

be displayed for all customers searching this journey in Trainline’s app. An orange bubble means customers have reported the whole train as busy, a blue bubble means customers have reported one section of the train (front, middle or back) as busy. The number in the bubble shows how many customers have shared this feedback.  

As more people start to travel by train and use Crowd Alerts, Trainline can make the anonymised crowdsourced data available to the rail industry to help train operators identify parts of the network that customers are reporting as busy.

Commenting on the new feature, Chief Technology Officer at Trainline, Mark Holt, states:

“Helping customers safely take the train is our number one priority and we always strive to give them as much live journey information as possible. Crowd Alerts empowers our customers to share in-the-moment, on-the-ground feedback to help the wider Trainline community.

 “We encourage customers to follow government guidelines when travelling and use digital tickets on their phone wherever possible, instead of queuing in stations or touching ticket machines, to help make sure that contact with others while travelling is limited.”

The Crowd Alerts beta-test is available for Trainline app customers, across iOS and Android.


About Trainline

Trainline is the leading independent rail and coach travel platform selling rail and coach tickets to millions of travellers worldwide. Via our highly rated website and mobile app, people can seamlessly search, book and manage their journeys all in one place. We bring together millions of routes, fares and journey times from more than 270 rail and coach carriers across 45 countries. We offer our customers the best price for their journey and smart, real-time travel information on the go. Our aim is to make rail and coach travel easier and more accessible, encouraging people to make more environmentally sustainable travel choices.

*Trainline app data on Northern routes only from 16 June to 29 June 2020