Commuters could be facing a battle to reach their homes this evening after a number of rail operators announced they were reducing and even cancelling some services amid the snow.
The blast of freezing weather from Russia – nicknamed ‘the Beast from the East’ - has not yet caused major disruptions on any train lines, but many providers are choosing to be safe rather than sorry, with travellers being advised to travel as early as possible on Monday evening.
Here’s how it’s all looking so far for Monday evening and night.
South Eastern - Passengers are advised to complete journeys by 6pm to try and avoid disruption.
C2C – Reduced services to run after 9pm with some cancellations. No services from Liverpool Street or Stratford. A reduced timetable is planned for Tuesday.
Greater Anglia – No services after 10pm and only a limited service in operation from 6am until 10pm on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Stansted Express – No services from Liverpool Street after 10.25pm on Monday. Services from Stansted Airport back to London are cancelled from 11.30pm.
Great Northern - No trains between London and Cambridge after 10.04 on Monday. A heavily reduced timetable will be in place on Tuesday.
TfL rail - No services from 11pm Monday until 7am on Tuesday.
Thameslink, Gatwick Express, Southern - Disruption to services is expected on Monday and may continue on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Passengers are advised services may also be cancelled by early evening.
Many have pointed out the cancellations appear to have come before the snow has settled in some places, with others complaining that the pre-emptive move is over-cautious and even cynical.
Hundreds of flights across Europe have also been cancelled because of the severe weather.
British Airways cancelled more than 60 short haul flights either departing or arriving from London Heathrow in a bid to protect punctuality.
A number of other flights from the west London hub were delayed.
BA is offering passengers booked on short haul flights between Monday and Friday the chance to re-book for travel on a later date up to March 21 free of charge.
A spokesman for the carrier said: “We are sorry that the weather this week is likely to lead to some delays and disruption to our schedules.
“It is likely at times we will have to proactively cancel some services and re-book customers on to alternative flights.
“Customers on cancelled services can also claim a full refund if they no longer wish to travel.
“We are sorry for the potential disruption to your travel plans and are doing all we can to minimise the effect the poor weather may have on our flights.”
Airports in Rome, Stockholm and Bergen were among those to suffer significant disruption to departures as Europe is hit by a blast of Siberian weather.
Ryanair cancelled almost 50 flights departing or arriving from the Italian capital, including some serving the UK.
EasyJet said its UK flight schedule was unaffected by the weather.
More than 70 flights travelling to or from the Canary Islands were disrupted when the region was hit by strong winds and rain on Sunday.
Passengers were forced to spend the night at the airport waiting for flights.
Travellers suffering from disruption due to bad weather are not entitled to compensation under EU rules, but airlines must provide assistance such as free access to phone calls or emails, meals and accommodation if required.
Could Face Coldest Spell Since 1991
The news comes as the Met Office issued a series of yellow and amber weather alerts for snow between Monday and Thursday, with forecasters warning that winds will make it feel as cold as -15C during the day – colder than the Arctic Circle.
Snow is expected to cover most of the UK over the course of the week, with up to 20cm predicted to settle in parts of Scotland and the north of England.
Met Office meteorologist Charlie Powell said: “The UK is on track for some really cold weather this week. It’s not going to be record-breaking, but it’ll be pretty exceptional – winds are going to make it feel minus 10C (14F) to minus 15C (5F) during the day.”
Dr Thomas Waite of Public Health England echoed those warnings: “Heating homes to at least 18C will help keep you healthy.
“Also, make sure you eat warm food, move about at home and wear several thin layers instead of fewer thicker ones.
“Cold temperatures inside and out can make you ill and can even kill. Prolonged cold weather like this can be a challenge to all of us; remember that staying warm helps keep you healthy.”