Whether to buy the train stations in Monopoly is always a tricky decision. To make the wisest choice, you’ll need to fully understand the Monopoly train station rules, as this is something that people often get wrong.
In the article, I’ll tell you everything you need to know about Monopoly stations. Plus a few facts that won’t help you win Monopoly at all, but I think you’ll still find to be rather interesting.
- The 4 train stations on Monopoly board games in the UK are Kings Cross, Marylebone, Fenchurch Street and Liverpool Street
- Each station costs £200 to buy
- You can’t build houses or hotels on Monopoly railway stations
- Owning all 4 Monopoly stations is a good strategy to help you win
Monopoly Station Names
There are four railway stations on the UK Monopoly board:
- Kings Cross Station
- Marylebone Station
- Fenchurch Street Station
- Liverpool Street Station
The Monopoly board stations are all real railway stations in London. But they’re not the biggest ones.
In fact, Liverpool Street Station is only the third busiest in London while King’s Cross is the eighth busiest. Marylebone is a pretty small train station, coming in at number 19, while the tiny Fenchurch Street Station has only four platforms and no direct access to the London Underground but is slightly busier.
If the game included the four biggest stations in London, they would be London Waterloo, London Victoria and London Bridge, along with the existing Liverpool Street Station.
Suggested read: London Monopoly Board Map
Monopoly Station Rules
The rules around Monopoly’s train stations are some of the most misunderstood rules in Monopoly. This is because people regularly miscalculate how much rent to pay, especially when one or more stations are mortgaged.
Plus, there are some extra house rules around stations, so you may choose to ignore the official rules and add in these extra ones to make the game more exciting.
How much are stations in Monopoly?
Monopoly stations cost £200 each to buy. When you land on an unowned station, you may buy it, or send it to auction.
How much is the rent for stations?
When another player lands on your railway station they must pay you rent. The amount of rent depends on how many stations you own:
- Rent with 1 station: £25
- Rent with 2 station: £50
- Rent with 3 station: £100
- Rent with 4 station: £200
Can you put houses on stations?
You can never build houses or hotels on stations in Monopoly. You can only add houses and hotels to the coloured properties and only once you’ve collected a full set.
Monopoly station mortgage rules
If you own more than one station and mortgage one or more of them, you may still collect the full rental value when someone lands on an un-mortgaged station.
For example, let’s say you own all four stations. You mortgage all of them except Kings Cross Station. When another player lands on Kings Cross Station they will still owe the full £200 rent. But if they land on a mortgaged station they will owe you nothing.
This rule also applies to colour sets. You can charge double rent for having a full set, even if one or two of the set are mortgaged.
Can you travel on stations in Monopoly?
According to the official UK rules of Monopoly, you cannot travel on stations. However, there is an unofficial variation of the rules called the ‘travelling stations rule’ that permits you to do so.
The Travelling Stations Rule
According to the travelling stations rule, when a player lands on a station, they may opt to move their token to another station that they own. The player must pay any rent due regardless of whether they choose to travel.
Players may also travel on their own stations – for free of course.
They may not travel on unowned stations but can travel on mortgaged stations. Players do not get $200 for passing Go when travelling between stations.
The Six Stations Rule
Another unofficial house rule to do with stations is the six stations rule.
If you choose to adopt this rule, the two utilities (Water Works and Electric Company) are treated like stations. They cost £200 to buy and can be mortgaged for £100. The rent for owning five stations is £300 and for six it is £400.
Monopoly Station Strategies
Most people love to buy the Monopoly stations. But how much return on investment do they actually generate?
Knowing when to buy a station and when to decline and send it to auction is a key strategy that can help you to win at Monopoly.
Monopoly stations cost and return
This table shows the cost, rent, and ROI of the Monopoly train stations:
|Number of stations owned||Total purchase price||Rent per station||Total rent||ROI if a player lands on all|
Are Monopoly stations worth it?
The stations in Monopoly are generally only worth it if you can buy three or four as this will generate a return on investment of 25% each time they are landed on. However, in a two-player game, it’s wise to buy one or two to prevent your opponent from owning too many.
If stations are already owned by two or three opponents, you should not buy the remaining one as this would almost certainly be a waste of money.
Don’t underestimate the power of the stations. It’s quite possible to win a game of Monopoly pretty quickly and even with no colour sets if you have all four of them.
Which Monopoly stations are the best?
The best railway station on the UK Monopoly board is Fenchurch Street Station as this is landed on most often. There isn’t a large difference in the probability of landing between the four stations, but Liverpool Street has the worst chance, being positioned on the final edge of the board.
Here are the probabilities of landing on each Monopoly railroad per roll:
- Fenchurch Street Station – 3.0659%
- Kings Cross Station – 2.9631%
- Marylebone Station – 2.9200%
- Liverpool Street Station– 2.4326%
The best station strategy to win at Monopoly
In Monopoly, the stations are generally good to buy and can certainly help you to win, especially if you can get your hands on at least three of them. If you land on a station and nobody else owns one, you should almost always buy it.
In a two-player game of Monopoly, you should always buy stations as doing so will either help you to get you a collection of three or four or will block your opponent from doing the same.
In a game of Monopoly with three or more players, if someone else owns a station then you probably shouldn’t buy one, unless it’s necessary to block another player from getting a set of four.
I’d always recommend at least considering buying the Monopoly rail stations. They tend to have a better ROI than the utilities, at least. But it does vary depending on how the game unfolds.
If you really want to get into the detail, I’ve put together some Monopoly statistics that have much more information on the odds and ROI values of the stations. Check it out if you want a competitive edge, although it is very data-heavy!