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Last updated : Nov 2009
England Getting Around - Internal Travel
England Internal Travel - Getting Around England - TravelPuppy.com
Air

Heathrow International Airport

ocated 24km or 15 miles west of central London. Airport information: telephone: (0870) 000 0123
Website:www.baa.com/main/airports/heathrow

The airport has three terminals grouped together in the airport’s central area. The fourth terminal is a short distance from the main complex. Terminal five is under construction.

Major airlines

Direct scheduled flights are provided by the national carrier, British Airways (telephone: (0845) 773 377 or (0845) 779 9977; website: www.british-airways.com). British Airways operates shuttle services to Belfast, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Manchester amongst other cities. Other internal flight operators include: Aer Lingus (EI), bmi british midland (BD), British European (JY), EasyJet (U2), KLM UK (UK) and Ryanair (FR).

Airport facilities

Banks and currency exchange in all terminals. ATMs in all terminals; left luggage in all terminals; post office; restaurants, bars, cafes and other eating places in all terminals; babycare rooms in all terminals; St George’s Chapel, opposite entrance to T2 car park (telephone: (020) 8745 4261); duty-free in all terminals; gift/general shops in all terminals; Travel Care Unit in Queen’s Building (telephone: (020) 8745 7495, open Mon-Sat 09:30-16:30). The Business Centre Heathrow (telephone: (020) 8759 2434, next to T2 emergency medical service); hotel reservation service in all terminals; facilities for the disabled include wheelchairs, telephones, toilets, special parking bays in short-term car park and coach link to long-term car park.

Business facilities

The Business Centre Heathrow (telephone: (020) 8759 2434, next to T2 emergency medical service).

Arrival/departure tax>: is included in the airline ticket.

Underground

The airport is connected to the entire Greater London area by the underground railway network. Stations for Heathrow Terminals 1, 2, 3 and 4 are on the Piccadilly Line. Travel time to the West End is 47 minutes, and to the mainline stations King’s Cross and St Pancras 55 minutes. All other mainline stations can be reached with one change of train in central London. Services run Monday-Saturday 05:11-23:49, and Sundays 05:57-23:30. 24-hour information on the London Regional Transport network telephone (020) 7222 1234.

Train

The Heathrow Express (telephone: (0845) 600 1515) is a fast service from London Paddington to Heathrow. Trains depart every 15 minutes (travel time is 15 minutes). There is a Railair (telephone: (08705) 747 777) coach, with express services connecting Heathrow with trains at Reading and Woking stations. Details are available in each terminal.

Transport to the city

Coach

London Transport runs Airbuses, an express service between Heathrow and central London. Airbuses call at all terminals and have space for passengers and baggage. There are also wheelchair facilities.

Speedlink Airport Services’ Jetlink rus every 30 minutes (almost 24 hours a day) to Gatwick (travel time about 1 hour 10 minutes). The service now runs to Stansted airport twice every 2 hours (travel time about 1 hour 25 minutes).

London Transport’s 726 bus runs to Kingston, Sutton, Croydon and Bromley. For information, dial (08705) 747 777. National Express (telephone: (08705) 808 080) has direct Rapide coach services from Heathrow to most parts of the UK. Speedlink luxury coaches connect Heathrow with Gatwick (travel time about 1 hour). Coaches depart every 30 minutes, operating 04:40-00:40. For information on schedules, online booking and fares for Airbus, Speedlink, Jetlink and National Express services, visit GoByCoach.

Local bus

London Transport (telephone: (020) 7941 4500) services 81, 105, 111, 140, 222, 285, 555, 556, 557, 726, A10, H30, N105, N140, N285, U3, and its night bus N9 runs from Heathrow Central bus station to various parts of London. The Oxford Bus Company (telephone: (01865) 785 410) runs the Oxford Express service between Heathrow and Oxford at half-hourly intervals during the day and 2-hourly intervals throughout the night.

Note

London Transport Travelcheck (telephone: (020) 7222 1234) has up-to-the-minute information on how London services are running.

Taxi

For hire outside each airport terminal. Each terminal has its own taxi rank and the information desk can provide an indication of fares.

Car hire

Europcar, Avis, Hertz and National self-drive and chauffeur-driven cars can be hired from desks in each airport terminal. To central London drive time can take 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Private car

Heathrow, 38km or 24 miles from central London, can be reached either through the tunnel of the M4 motorway spur or from the A4 (Bath) road. It is also close to the M25 orbital motorway, making trips to virtually all parts of the country relatively simple.

Gatwick (LGW) Airport

Located 46km or 28 miles south of central London. Airport information: telephone: (0870) 000 2468;

website: www.baa.com/main/airports/gatwick.

Facilities

Banks/ currency exchange, ATMs, restaurants, shops, left luggage, duty-free shops, chapel, babycare rooms, medical room and facilities for the disabled; all facilities are available 24 hours. There is an executive lounge in the South Terminal, open daily 06:00-21:00 (telephone: (01293) 502 400).

Train

Gatwick Express (telephone: (08705) 301 530) runs a nonstop service from Victoria Station at 15-minute intervals from 04:30-00:30 and at hourly intervals daily 01:35-04:35 (travel time is 30 minutes). Passengers travelling on American Airlines, British Airways and GB Airways can check in at Victoria Station. There are also services to Gatwick from London Bridge Station (travel time – 30 minutes).

Coach

Flightline to Victoria Coach Station and Stansted Airport runs hourly 04:15-22:40 (travel time to Victoria about 1 hour 25 minutes). Jetlink (telephone: (08705) 747 777) to Heathrow runs every 30 minutes during most of the day and night (travel time about 1 hour 10 minutes), with extensions to Luton Airport every hour and to Stansted Airport every 2 hours. The service to Heathrow runs every hour until 00:05. Contact GoByCoach for information on schedules, online bookings and and fares for Flightlink, Jetlink and National Express services.

Taxi

Outside the terminal (travel time to central London is about 1 hour; telephone: (01293) 502 808; fax: (01293) 569 790).

Car hire

Europcar, Avis, Hertz and National self-drive and chauffeur-driven cars can be hired from desks in the arrivals hall.

Private car

Gatwick can be reached from London on the A23/M23. It is also near the M25 orbital motorway, linking all main routes from London. There are plenty of parking facilities for short and long stays.

London City Airport (LCY)

Located 10km or 6 miles east of the City of London. Airport information: telephone: (020) 7646 0088; web site: www.londoncityairport.com. This airport is locate at the Royal Docks in the London Borough of Newham.

London City Airport provides frequent scheduled air services. Scheduled airlines include Air France, Aer Lingus, British European, KLM UK, Lufthansa, Luxair, Swiss and VLM. Check-in time is usually about 10 minutes.

Facilities

Duty-free shops, bank, car hire, bureaux de change and ATMs, left luggage, information desk, restaurant and bars, newsagent and bookstore, and business centre with meeting rooms and conference facilities for up to 80 persons.

Train/Underground

Silvertown Station, on the Silverlink Metro line, is 328m or 300 yards from the airport.

Coach/Bus

A shuttle bus runs every 10 minutes from the terminal to Canary Wharf (Docklands Light Railway); Canning Town (London Underground, Docklands Light Railway and the Silverlink Metro) and Liverpool Street Station (London Underground and mainline trains to the east of England).

Taxi

Available; may be booked in-flight.

Car hire

Avis, Europcar (telephone: (08456) 005 000) and Hertz.

Private car

The airport can be reached from the City via Commercial Road/East India Dock Road (A13) over the Canning Town Flyover, turning right into Prince Regent Lane, or via Tower Hill along The Highway (A1203) and Silvertown Way (travel time is about 30 minutes); from the M25 via the M11 and North Circular (A406) or the A13.

Stansted (STN) Airport

Located 48km or 30 miles northeast of central London. Airport information: telephone: (08700) 000 303;

Facilities

Information desk, lounge, lost property, bureaux de change, ATMs, restaurants and cafes/bars, nursing mothers’ room, emergency medical service, duty-free shops, fax and photocopying facilities, wheelchairs and toilets for the disabled.

Train

The Stansted Express runs throughout the day (04:30-00:30) from London Liverpool Street to Stansted (telephone: (01223) 453 606). Services run every 15 minutes (08:00-15:45) and every 30 minutes, evenings and Saturdays (travel time is about 41 minutes).

Coach

Colchester Coach Link (telephone: (08457) 484 950) runs services to Stansted from Dunmow, Bradwell and Colchester, daily 05:25-20:10. Airbus (telephone: (08705) 747 777) connects Stansted with London Victoria Coach Station. Jetlink (telephone: (08705) 747 777) runs services every 2 hours, between Gatwick, Heathrow, Luton and Stansted. Jetlink also provides services to Braintree, Cambridge, Ipswich, Milton Keynes, Norwich and Oxford, amongst others. Flightlink coaches operate to Gatwick Airport via Victoria Coach Station in London. Taxi: To central London takes about 1 hour 30 minutes.

Car hire

Hired from desks in the terminal building. For details, contact Avis, Europcar, Hertz (telephone: (01279) 680 154) or National. For air taxis/business aviation services, contact Artac Air Chartering Service (telephone: (01376) 566 000).

Private car

The airport is easily accessible by road on M25/M11 from London. The Midlands and the North are reached via the A1, A604 and M11. Long - and short-term parking space is available.

Luton (LTN)

Located 51km or 32 miles northwest of London. Airport information: telephone: (01582) 405 100; web site: www.london-luton.com.

Facilities

Bureaux de change, ATMs, shops, restaurants and bar/cafes, nursing mothers’ room, free play area (2 to 8 years) in departure lounge, duty-free shop, chapel, medical services and facilities for the disabled – wheelchairs, toilets and ambulift.

Train

Access to Luton Airport is via Luton Airport Parkway station. A courtesy shuttle service runs between the station and airport terminal. Luton is on the Thameslink line which goes from Bedford via London (stopping at King’s Cross and London Bridge stations) and Gatwick Airport to Brighton.

Coach

National Express (telephone: (08705) 808 080) with daily services to Birmingham and Manchester. Services also run to most other parts of the UK. Jetlink is a direct (limited stops) service connecting Stansted Airport with Luton, Heathrow and Gatwick, operates hourly from Luton.

Local bus

Buses (telephone: (08706) 082 608) from the airport to Luton bus and rail stations, with services during the day, and hourly evening services (Monday-Saturday).

Taxi

From the rank immediately outside the terminal building.

Car hire

Budget, Avis, Europcar, Hertz and National Car Rental have desks at the airport.

Private car

The airport is reached on the M1 exiting at Junction 10. Access to the airport from the east is via the A505 dual carriageway from Hitchin. The M25 connects all motorways and the airport can be accessed from the East, South and West via M25, M4, M11 and M23.

Birmingham (BHX) Airport

Located 13km or 8 miles southeast of the city centre. Airport information: telephone: (0870) 733 5511; web site: www.bhx.co.uk.

Facilities

Bank and exchange services, ATMs, cafes and restaurants, duty-free shops, facilities for the disabled, medical centre, nursing mothers’ room, shops, viewing gallery and left-luggage office.

Train

The terminal is linked to Birmingham International Station and the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) by the Air Rail Link courtesy bus service. Birmingham International is linked to the Intercity network and regional lines and has a fast service to London Euston every 30 minutes (travel time is about 1 hour 20 minutes).

Coach/Bus

Travel West Midlands runs local services into the suburbs. An Airbus service from the airport to the NEC and various locations around the city centre, operates every 30 minutes (05:00-21:00).

Local bus

Service 900 runs to the city centre Monday to Sunday every 20 minutes from 03:22-00:31.

Taxi

Outside the Eurohub Terminal (travel time to city centre is about 25 minutes).

Car hire

Budget, Avis, Europcar, Hertz and National Car Rental have offices at the airport.

Private car

M1, M5, M6, M40 and M42 are the main routes to Birmingham. The airport is signposted from the city. There is open-air parking (over 8000 spaces) at the airport.

Manchester (MAN) Airport

Located 16km or 10 miles southwest of the city centre. Airport information: telephone : (0161) 489 3000;

web site: www.manchesterairport.co.uk.

Facilities

Restaurants/cafes, duty-free shops, baby care and play area, shops, banking, bureaux de change, ATMs, medical centre, post office, conference and banqueting facilities for up to 400 people and full facilities for the disabled.

Train

Manchester Airport station connects the airport to Manchester city centre, with trains departing Monday-Saturday every 15 minutes and every 20 minutes on Sunday (travel time is about 20 minutes).

Coach/Bus

National Express (telephone: (08705) 808 080) with daily services to most parts of the UK including Scotland. Skyline buses 43A and 105 operate throughout the week from villages to Piccadilly rail station and the city centre.

Taxi

Situated outside or adjacent to Terminals 1, 2 and 3 (travel time to the city centre is about 25 minutes).

Car hire

Budget, Avis, Europcar, Hertz, National Car Rental and Sixt have booking offices in Terminals 1, 2 and 3.

Private car

The airport is at the heart of the country’s motorway network and a constructed spur from the M56 runs directly into the terminal building. Road connections serve Greater Manchester, Merseyside, Lancashire, Cheshire, the Midlands and West and South Yorkshire. There is car parking space within the airport.

Newcastle (NCL) Airport

Located 8km or 5 miles northwest of the city centre. Airport information: telephone: (0191) 286 0966; web site: www.newcastleairport.com.

Facilities

Bureaux de change, bank, ATMs, restaurant, bars, shops, duty-free shop, left luggage, baby care and play area, emergency medical services and facilities for the disabled.

Metro

The Tyneside Metro Rapid Transport system links the whole of the Newcastle area with the airport. It runs to Newcastle city centre, across the River Tyne to Gateshead and South Shields and to Tynemouth and the coast. For information, call Traveline (Public Transport Information; telephone: (0870) 608 2608).

Train

The nearest railway station is Newcastle Central, 11km or 7 miles from the airport, linked by buses operated by Busways, which run Monday through Saturday every 30 minutes, and every hour on Sunday. For further information, contact National Rail Enquiries (telephone: (08457) 484 950).

Coach

National Express and Scottish Citylink has services to the airport from most major cities in Scotland and the North of England and Midlands.

Local bus

Services 76, 76A, 77, 77A, 78, 78E, 79 and 79A operate from Eldon Square bus concourse, in the centre of Newcastle. These stop on the main road at the airport entrance (travel time is about 20 minutes). Public Transport Information (telephone: (0870) 608 2608).

Taxi

A taxi rank is outside the railway station, and at the Haymarket near the Eldon Square bus concourse in Newcastle city centre (travel time to city centre – 15 to 20 minutes). Only licensed taxi cabs are allowed to pick up at the airport.

Car hire

Avis (telephone: (0191) 214 0116), Europcar (telephone: (0191) 286 5070), Hertz (telephone: (0191) 286 6748) and National (telephone: (0191) 214 5222) self-drive agents are located at the airport.

Private car

The airport is reached from the south by the A1(M) north, then the A696 Jedburgh trunk road, and from the north by the A1 south, then the A696 Jedburgh trunk road. Long- and short-term parking facilities are available (advance booking recommended during busy periods).

Sea

There are many ports with ferry connections between England and mainland Europe, Ireland, the Channel Islands, the Isle of Wight, the Channel Isles and the Isle of Man.

Rail

The UK is served by an excellent network of railways (16,500km or 10,250 miles in total). Intercity lines has fast services between London and major cities, and there are services to the southeast and to major cities in the Midlands, the north and south Wales and between Edinburgh and Glasgow.

Rail passes

There are many fares, and visitors using trains may like to consider one of the all-line Britrail range of passes with unlimited travel. This is available to visitors from overseas and is not available in the UK; tickets must be purchased in their home country, although tickets can be collected in the UK. Further details from Network Rail Group. For more information about UK train services and fares, contact National Rail Enquiries (telephone: (08457) 484 950). InterRail cards are valid; holders may be entitled to discounts on ferry fares.

Road

England is served by a good network of motorways and trunk roads connecting all the main cities and towns.

The main motorways are:
M1: London, Luton, Leicester, Sheffield, Leeds. M2/A2: London to Dover. M3: London to Winchester. M4: London, Reading, Bristol, Newport, Cardiff, Swansea. M5: Birmingham, Gloucester, Bristol, Exeter. M6: Coventry, Birmingham, Stoke, Warrington (connecting with the M62 for Liverpool and Manchester), Preston (connecting with the M55 for Blackpool), Morecambe, Carlisle. M11: London to Cambridge. M20/A20: London to Folkestone. M25: London orbital. M40: London to Birmingham. M62: Liverpool, Warrington, Manchester, Huddersfield, Leeds, Hull. The main trunk roads are: A1/A1(M) (motorway in parts): London, Peterborough, Doncaster, Darlington, Newcastle, Edinburgh. A3: London, Guildford, Portsmouth. A5: London, St Albans, Nuneaton, Birmingham area, Shrewsbury, across inland north Wales to Holyhead. A6: London, Bedford, Leicester, Manchester. A11: London to Norwich. A12: London, Ipswich, Great Yarmouth. A23: London to Brighton. A30: London, Basingstoke, Yeovil, Exeter, Penzance. A40: London, Oxford (M40), Gloucester, Cheltenham, across inland south Wales to Fishguard.

Distances from London (by road)

• Birmingham 169km or 105 miles
• Manchester 299km or 186 miles
• Liverpool 325km or 202 miles
• Exeter 278km or 173 miles
• Penzance 452km or 281 miles
• Bristol 185km or 115 miles
• Carlisle 484km or 301 miles
• Newcastle 441km or 274 miles
• Sheffield 257km or 160 miles
• York 311km or 193 miles
• Cambridge 89km or 55 miles
• Southampton 124km or 77 miles
• Dover 114km or 71 miles
• Oxford 92km or 57 miles
• Norwich 182km or 113 miles
• Portsmouth 113km or 70 miles
• Harwich 122km or 76 miles

Coach

Many companies offer express and stopping services throughout England and the rest of the UK. National Express (telephone: (08705) 808 080) provides nationwide coach information. The head office is at 4 Vicarage Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 3ES (telephone: (08705) 808080; fax: (0121) 456 1397).

Bicycle hire

Ask for a Tourist Board leaflet.

Traffic regulations

Traffic drives on the left. Speed limits are 30mph or 48kph in urban areas, 70mph or 113kph on motorways and dual carriageways, elsewhere 50mph or 80kph or 60mph/97kph as marked. Petrol is graded in a star system: 2-star (90 octane) and 4-star (97 octane). Unleaded petrol is also available at all petrol stations and is lower in price than leaded petrol. Seatbelts must be worn by the driver and front seat passenger. Where rear seat belts have been fitted they must also be used.

Documentation

National driving licences are valid for 1 year. Drivers need Third Party insurance and vehicle registration documents.

Automobile associations

The AA and RAC can provide a full range of services to UK members touring the UK. These organisations can also help people who are travelling from abroad with maps, tourist information and specially marked routes to major events or places of interest.

Urban transport in London

The Underground - The Tube

London has a comprehensive metro service known as the ‘Underground’ or the ‘tube’. The tube is the oldest and one of the most extensive underground networks in the world. There are 13 lines, including the Docklands Light Railway, and the Central and the Metropolitan – extend well into the surrounding suburbs. Each line has its own colour on the network map. Some operate certain sections during peak hours and some stations close altogether in the evenings or at weekends.

All of the railway terminus stations connect with at least one Underground line, with the exception of Fenchurch Street. Travel discounts are available. The 1-day, weekend or weekly Travelcard offers unlimited travel on bus, Underground and overground rail services in one or more zones; it is one of the best methods for visitors to travel throughout London. Monthly and annual Travelcards require a passport-size photograph. For 24-hour enquiries on bus and underground travel, contact London Transport (telephone: (020) 7222 1234). For enquiries about rail services, contact National Rail Enquiries (telephone: (08457) 484 950).

Bus

London is served by an excellent network of buses of about 300 routes, although recent policy has been to cut some of the lesser-used services. Some operate only partial routes at specific times or may discontinue service in the evenings or at weekends.

Taxi/Car hire

Black cabs can be hailed in the street or hired by phone. Fares are metered but surcharges are levied for extra passengers, large amounts of luggage, travelling at night, and on Sundays or public holidays. Over 3000 new black cabs have facilities for wheelchair passengers. Mini-cabs and cars for hire are also available; numbers are listed in the Yellow Pages telephone directory.

River transport

Leisure and commuter services on the River Thames are run by a variety of private companies. Collins River Enterprises (telephone: 020 7977 6892), operates a commuter service between Canary Wharf and Savoy Pier, and Thames Clippers. The main commuter service is between Chelsea Harbour and Embankment. At weekends, there are many cruises and pleasure trips. For further information, contact London Travel Information (telephone: (020) 7941 4500).
Useful travel links
AA route planner directions and maps within England