Train driver | Average UK Salary & Outlook

Train drivers operate trains on the rail network, carrying passengers and freight around the country.

  • Interpret train orders, signals, or railroad rules and regulations that govern the operation of locomotives.  
  • Confer with conductors or traffic control center personnel via radiophones to issue or receive information concerning stops, delays, or oncoming trains.  
  • Receive starting signals from conductors and use controls such as throttles or air brakes to
Read more about Train driver

Train drivers typically work around 35 to 40 hours per week.

As a Train driver you will typically work evenings / weekends / bank holidays.

This occupation tends to be:

  • Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely
  • Read more about Train driver
    * from ONETonline
    Average salary
    57,323 GBP *
    per year
    20,000 GBP
    60,000 GBP
    5+ Experience
    * data taken from the Office of National Statistics (
    Average salary for Train driver

    • 57,703 GBP
    • 54,240 GBP
    Average salary for part-time Train driver
    Average salary for full-time Train driver

    • 32,805 GBP
    • 57,323 GBP
    • 54,240 GBP
    • 57,703 GBP
    Salary over time for Train driver

    Salary for this role has increased over time
    • 47,669 GBP
    • 49,137 GBP
    • 49,403 GBP
    • 52,518 GBP
    • 54,261 GBP
    • 57,904 GBP
    • 57,323 GBP
    • 58,256 GBP

    Future outlook for Train drivers

    Balanced outlook
    25 000+ jobs available
    Balanced outlook
    3% yearly wage growth (on average)
    Balanced outlook
    57% chance of automation in the future

    Train driver - Your future job?

    Which qualifications do I need?

    Find out what you need to know in order to become a Train driver and the highest average level of education for people in this role.

    In terms of people already doing this job:

    • 68% of people in this role have GCSEs or equivalent
    • 23% of people in this role have a post-secondary qualification such as a Higher National Diploma
    • 7% of people in this role have a certificate of higher education or equivalent but no degree

    You can apply directly to a train operating company to become a trainee driver.

    Employers usually expect you to have GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) in English and maths, or equivalent qualifications.

    Training can last between 12 and 24 months.

    Get the right qualification to begin your journey to becoming a Train driver


    What soft skills do I need?

    Rise above the competition by brushing up on the 5 most important soft skills you need to become a Train driver.
    Operation and Control Controlling operations of equipment or systems
    Operation Monitoring Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly
    Active Listening Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times
    Critical Thinking Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems
    Monitoring Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action

    What technical skills do I need?

    Technical skills are programmes, softwares and things you need to know in order to be a successful Train driver. Check that you know:
    Expert system software Electronic train management systems ETMS
    Route navigation software Route mapping software
    Spreadsheet software Microsoft Excel
    Time accounting software Time tracking software
    Word processing software Microsoft Word
    Improve your skills today


    Things to highlight for your Train driver interview

    Attention to Detail Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks. Dependability Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations. Self Control Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations. Integrity Job requires being honest and ethical. Cooperation Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.

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