FAQs - THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride Spa Valley


  • How long does the experience last?

    We ask guests to arrive at the check-in time shown on your e-ticket  at the park and ride this gives us enough time to shuttle you to site and for you to grab a bite to eat if you wish.

    You are on board the train for approximately 1 hour.

    Once your experience is over you can spend as much time in our gift shop as you wish but we tend to find guests spend around 15min – 30min here before you head back on the shuttle to the car park.

    Therefore we find guests are with us around 1:30-2 hours.

  • Is the train pulled by a steam engine?

    Yes, we schedule a steam engine to pull THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride. The only time we won’t is due to circumstances beyond our control, where we reserve the right to use a substitute engine as required to ensure the event continues.

  • Are animals allowed on board THE POLAR EXPRESS™?

    Unfortunately, pets are not allowed on board. Service animals / assistance animals who have been trained are welcome to join us. Please contact customer services prior to your visit if you plan to bring your assistance animal on board the train.

    Please speak to a member of staff on arrival if you require any assistance or reasonable adjustments to help you in your visit.

  • Do you offer any discounts?

    If you are in receipt of the highest rate of Disability Living Allowance (DLA), SDP, or enhanced rate Personal Independence Payment (PIP) benefit or you have an access card with a +1 shown, we offer a 50% discount on the carer’s ticket. Please reply to our Customer Service elves with your booking number and proof of entitlement. Our elves will then refund you 50% of 1 ticket minus the compulsory £3.95 booking fee.

    We currently do not offer blue light, military or any other form of discount.

  • Are pushchairs/car seats allowed on board?

    Unfortunately, due to the limited space on our heritage carriages, neither pushchairs or the car seat sections are allowed on board. Please leave them on the platform where our marshalls will look after them until you return.

  • Gift Shop

    Our THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride shop is available before and after the Train Ride and is for ticket holders only.

    Online Gift Shop

    We also operate our online shop North Pole Trading where you are able to purchase a range of THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride items throughout the year.

    Returns / refunds / faulty items

    We are sorry you wish to return your items / your item is faulty. Please contact our customer services who can assist with this. We will require your receipt number in order to process this.

  • Seating Arrangements

    Our carriages have seating arranged in 4’s around a table or in pairs. When booking you will be given the option to choose your own seating arrangements. We reserve the right to change carriage configuration and your seating arrangements at any time and without notice.

    Please note all of our carriages are from heritage stock therefore they may differ in style, age and seating including wear and tear.

  • Does the train move or is it stationary?

    Yes, the train does move. You will be on-board for approximately 1 hour. There may need to be movements backwards and forwards due to caribou or frozen lakes.

    Whilst we attempt to run the event as close to THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride experience as possible we may need to, at short notice and due to technical or mechanical problems, make operational changes to enable the event to continue to run. This may include substituting a diesel locomotive or running the show on a static train.



  • Allergy Information

    We will offer an alternative hot chocolate and a snack free from many allergens, but unfortunately we may not be able to accommodate all possible allergies or dietary requirements. Please speak to a member of staff on the train if you require an allergy friendly alternative.

    You are also welcome to bring an alternative with you for members of your party who have allergies if you prefer.


  • What should I wear for THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride?

    We encourage our guests, young and young at heart to wear pyjamas just as in the book with a dressing gown for good measure also. Immerse youirself in THE POLAR EXPRESS™
    Train Ride, children love it and why not Mums, Dads, Granny and Grandpa too? The atmosphere in the train comes alive for a truly magical experience!

    For the safety of our guests we ask that they wear sturdy, closed toed shoes and not slippers, open toed shoes, flip-flops etc. The British winter weather is not kind to fluffy slippers.

  • Parking

    The event takes place in Royal Tunbridge Wells at Spa Valley Railway. The train will depart from West Station, TN2 5QY


    Guests will need to make their own parking arrangements for the event.

    For more information please visit https://spavalleythepolarexpressride.com/car-parking/


    Disabled guests can be dropped off at the railway. The Spa Valley Railway staff will then direct you to parking.


    Remember, it’s December!

    As the event takes place in December please do prepare for wintry road conditions. Remember this is England, weather can vary dramatically, however this event will run no matter the weather conditions even in rain and snow. 

    PNP Events and Spa Valley Railway are not liable for any road closures or delays. No refunds are given if we run the train as advertised but you miss it due to weather conditions or any other reason beyond our control.

  • Tickets and Prices

    How can I buy tickets?

    All tickets are sold online. You cannot order tickets via phone or in person at the railway. We accept all major credit and debit cards as payment and we use Stripe as our payment processor.

    How much do tickets cost and what dates and times are available? Our full range of times, dates, and their prices can be found by clicking Book Now at the top of this page.

  • Refund & Cancellation Policy

    What is the cancellation / refund policy?

    Unfortunately due to the popularity of THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride event we are unable to offer any cancellations, refunds, or reschedules less than 60 days prior to your event starting, therefore please be sure you can attend on the dates/times selected when you book. In the unfortunate event the train is unable to operate, you will be notified as soon as possible and given a refund or the opportunity to reschedule.

    We are happy to cancel / refund / reschedule where possible your tickets, as long as you contact us more than 60 days prior to your event date, subject to an admin fee of £15 for all changes made.

    Changes less than 60 days prior to your event are at our discretion only and subject to an admin fee of 25% of your entire ticket value.

    You are only liable for a refund should we fail to to run the event. There will be NO refunds for guests missing the train or arriving late or who miss the train due to but not limited to, illness, poor weather, vehicle breakdowns, public transport, acts of God and anything covered in the Events Outside Our Control.

    There will be NO changes to any tickets later than 30 days prior to your event date.


    What if the weather is bad and travel will be difficult?

    As the event takes place in winter please do prepare for the road conditions. No refunds will be given if you can’t get to us and the experience runs.

    PNP Events LTD are not responsible for the winter weather or your transport arrangements to us or any road closures or delays or cancellations on your journey to us. Please leave plenty of time to travel safely to us. 

  • When will I receive my tickets?

    Your E-tickets will be sent out to you two weeks before you’re due to visit us.

    If you have selected to receive your Golden Tickets via post, available during checkout, these should arrive with you 1 week before your event. In the unfortunate event that they don’t arrive you will be able to collect them from Customer Services on the day.

  • Protect Your Tickets

    Ticket Protection allows you to re-coup 100% of the paid ticket price if you are unable to make it to your event for any number of covered reasons, including illness, travel delay, adverse weather conditions and more.

    Full details of the Ticket Protection coverage can be found here: https://securemybooking.com/make-a-claim/uk/ Please ensure the policy meets your needs before purchase.

    Ticket Protection is provided by a third party company Secure My Booking and their Terms and Conditions are final. The Ticket Protection is non-refundable in any circumstance.

    Ticket Protection can only be purchased when making a booking. It cannot be added retrospectively.


  • Can I make changes to my tickets?

    As long as you contact us more than 60 days prior to your event date, subject to an admin fee of £15 for all changes made.

    Changes less than 60 days prior to your event are at our discretion only and subject to an admin fee of 25% of your entire ticket value.

    There will be NO changes to any tickets later than 30 days prior to your event date.

  • What happens if I arrive late?

    Unfortunately timings are extremely strict. If you are heading to the event and likely to be late, just keep coming and we will do everything we can to help you, however, even if the train hasn’t left the platform we have strict cut-offs where the doors are locked and cannot be unlocked to allow for late arrivals, just like a normal train.

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