We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Royal Ascot Ladies Day, question about trains from Waterloo

Which Ascot hotels are on sale?
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
See hotels
London, England
Level Contributor
30 posts
15 reviews
Save Topic
Royal Ascot Ladies Day, question about trains from Waterloo

Hi folks, I'm hoping somebody with more knowledge can help me! I've been to Royal Ascot Ladies Day for the last few years. Previously we've driven, booked parking at the tennis club, had a picnic before hand and then enjoyed the day with grandstand tickets. Then my husband (god love him!) has got the train to Ascot to pick up us and the car (since I have by then been drinking). What a star he is!

However for various reasons this year the plan is different. We plan to be in London before and afterwards and therefore to get the train from Waterloo.

When driving, we've always timed it carefully because it's a long day already and we want to enjoy it. We don't want to be late enough to hit the worst of the traffic but don't want to be so early that we're cream crackered (or have drunk too much) before it even starts. So we usually end up arriving about 12.

Coming by train though I'm more keen not to end up on packed trains. I already know the train back will be carnage (!) as I've seen the station afterwards (from the relative comfort of the car!) and I'm OK with that, it's a small price to pay. But I would really like to get a seat on the way TO Ascot and arrive looking half way normal! and not feeling tired already. So of course I'd like to get a train about 11 and arrive for 12 ! However I suspect that is way too late and if I aim to do that the trains will be a nightmare, packed with people and we'll end up late and stressed which wouldn't be the best star to the day. So OK, we'll leave earlier. But the question is, how early do we need to leave?

I notice Ascot have a chartered train which guarantees you a seat on the way out and leaves at 9.35. I'd be happy to pay the premium for it actually for the guaranteed seat but it's SO early. I really don't want to arrive at 10.30. I was rather hoping that if we left Waterloo somewhere between 10 and 10.30 that would be early enough for the trains to be quieter but late enough to not have to many hours of hanging around (with nothing better to do but drink, which is dangerous and may not enhance the day!) before hand.

Also, very happy to pay for the first class upgrade but is it worth it, are we likely to get a seat?

All advice from anyone who has actually done this gratefully received!

2 replies to this topic
Surrey UK
Level Contributor
1,393 posts
13 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Royal Ascot Ladies Day, question about trains from Waterloo

I have no personal experience. But, if the main objective is to avoid crowds, you might consider catching a train from Waterloo to Aldershot (final destination Alton) and changing at Aldershot for Ascot. It's a bit of a long way round but would come within the National Rail definition of a "reasonable route". It's an easy transfer in Aldershot (cross-platform on the outward journey) and the trains run every half hour. You might be a bit more elegantly dressed than the rest of the clientele. There is first class on the Alton trains but the Aldershot-Ascot service is now standard class only (and no loos, but it is only 20 minutes).

London, England
Level Contributor
30 posts
15 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Royal Ascot Ladies Day, question about trains from Waterloo

Thanks for this idea, I'll bear it in mind. I'm more keen to have a direct train if possible (not worried about loos or how other people are dressed) - you're right that a key objective is to avoid being ridiculously overcrowded but on the other hand I'm not sure I want the hassle of changing trains and it being a longer journey... although I take the point about it being an easy change.

I'll think on it - thanks for the input.

Reply to: Royal Ascot Ladies Day, question about trains from Waterloo
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted