Workers across more than a dozen train companies are set to walk out this weekend, with major London hubs likes Euston and Waterloo set to be left empty.
Swathes of the UK will have no train services running on Friday, amid the latest round of major coordinated transport strikes.
Members of train drivers’ union Aslef will walk out on Friday and refuse to work overtime on Saturday, while up to 20,000 RMT members will also take industrial action on Saturday.
The strikes come as a consultation to close ticket offices at stations across England comes to an end.
The 24-hour walkout by Aslef will severely affect timetables, with trains starting later and finishing earlier than usual, with some areas having no trains all day.
Trains are expected to be affected at 14 different operators: Avanti West Coast, c2c, Chiltern Railways, Cross Country Trains, East Midlands Railway, Great Western Railway, Greater Anglia, LNER, Northern Trains, South Eastern, South Western Railway, Transpennine Express, West Midlands Trains and GTR (including Southern, Gatwick Express, Thameslink and Great Northern).
Passengers have been urged to check their journeys ahead of travelling, as some firms will run no trains at all today, while less than half of all trains will run on Saturday.
Aslef general secretary Mick Whelan said: “Train drivers at these companies have not had a pay rise for four years, since 2019, while inflation has rocketed. This shows how the contempt in which the companies, and the government, hold passengers and staff and public transport in Britain.”
A spokesperson for the Rail Delivery Group said: “Further strike action by the Aslef leadership is unnecessary and will cause more disruption to passengers looking to enjoy the end of the summer holidays.
“The union leadership has its head in the sand and refuses to put our fair and reasonable offer to their members.”
A Department for Transport (DfT) spokesperson said: “After taxpayers supported rail workers throughout the pandemic, it’s frustrating to see both Aslef and RMT coordinate their strikes with the aim of causing as much disruption as possible on the last weekend of the summer holidays.
“Continued industrial action is disappointing and delays the reforms that would ultimately benefit passengers, rail workers and taxpayers.”