International student flights: What to do once you arrive in the UK

International student flights: What to do once you arrive in the UK

This article about international student flights and what to do once you arrive in the UK was published by the Great British Mag content team on 10 July, 2020

Arriving in the UK for the first time is a thrilling experience. Of course, the first place to greet you will be an international airport, an environment that grows only more overwhelming when partnered with jet lag and nerves. But have no fear! If you’re planning to study in the UK, here is everything you need to know about airports and public transportation.

Here is an index to all the airports listed in the article:

  • England: London Luton, London Stansted, London Heathrow, London Gatwick, Southampton, Bournemouth, Exeter, Bristol, Norwich, Birmingham, East Midlands, Doncaster Sheffield, Liverpool John Lennon, Manchester, Leeds, Teesside, Newcastle
  • Wales: Cardiff
  • Scotland: Glasgow, Edinburgh, Glasgow Prestwick, Aberdeen, Inverness
  • Northern Ireland: Belfast International, George Best Belfast City

A general note on public transportation: many rail and bus stations are phasing out workers at ticket offices. Review your station’s website to double-check the best way to purchase your ticket.

London Luton Airport

London Luton Airport (previously called Luton International Airport) is located in Bedfordshire, just 28 miles north of London. It features one single, two-storey passenger terminal building and is the only London airport without its own train station on the airport’s doorstep (more on that later).

London Luton Airport flies direct from:

Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Malta, Moldova, Morocco, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine.

London Luton Airport is best for:

University of Hertfordshire, University of Bedfordshire, Bedford College, North Hertfordshire College, Imperial College London, University College London, London School of Economics and Political Science, King’s College London, St George’s University of London, Goldsmiths University of London, Anglia Ruskin University, University of the Arts, University of Brunel, University of Westminster, Royal Veterinary School, BPP University, City University London, Courtauld Institute of Art, University of East London, University of Greenwich, Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Heythrop College, Kingston University, London Business School, London Institute of Banking and Finance, London Metropolitan University, London South Bank University, Middlesex University, Queen Mary, Ravensbourne University London, Regent’s University London, University of Roehampton, Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance, Royal Academy of Music, Royal College of Art, Royal College of Music, Royal College of Nursing, Royal Holloway, St Mary’s University Twickenham, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, The University of Law, University of West London.

How to get from London Luton Airport to the city centre by train:

To get to the train station from Luton Airport, you’ll need to get a connecting bus to Luton Airport Parkway. To do so, buy a ticket from the machine before exiting the airport and then find the connecting bus (usually to the right as you come out of the airport). The journey takes five to ten minutes and drops you off right outside the train station.

Unfortunately you cannot use an Oyster or contactless card for the train journey into Central London, but you can after you get to either St Pancras International, Farringdon or London Blackfriars stations. It takes around 40 minutes.

If you are going into London, you can use the tube network to travel within the nine zones of London. At this point, you can get a Student Oyster Card.

How to get from London Luton Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The National Express bus runs frequent trips to Central London throughout the day (four during the daytime) but also some throughout the night.

The A1 service runs to London Victoria Coach Station, while the A2 service runs to London Paddington Station via Baker Street. It takes around 50 minutes and you can buy your ticket online.

You can also get a bus from London Luton Airport to both Hertfordshire (around 35 minutes) and Bedfordshire (around 23 minutes).

London Stansted Airport

London Stansted Airport is located in Essex and is 42 miles northeast of London. It has an extensive European route network and brings more European visitors to London than any other airport. 

London Stansted Airport flies direct from:

Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Lanzarote, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Montenegro, Morocco, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates.

 London Stansted Airport is best for:

University of Cambridge, The University of Essex, South Essex College –  University Centre Southend and Thurrock, Imperial College London, University College London, London School of Economics and Political Science, King’s College London, St George’s University of London, Goldsmiths University of London, Anglia Ruskin University, University of the Arts, University of Brunel, University of Westminster, Royal Veterinary School, BPP University, City University London, Courtauld Institute of Art, University of East London, University of Greenwich, Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Heythrop College, Kingston University, London Business School, London Institute of Banking and Finance, London Metropolitan University, London South Bank University, Middlesex University, Queen Mary, Ravensbourne University London, Regent’s University London, University of Roehampton, Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance, Royal Academy of Music, Royal College of Art, Royal College of Music, Royal College of Nursing, Royal Holloway, St Mary’s University Twickenham, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, The University of Law, University of West London.

How to get from London Stansted Airport to the city centre by train:

The airport’s train station is a two-minute walk from the terminal and offers an express train to London Liverpool Street Station. The journey takes about 45 minutes.

If you are going into London, you can use the tube network to travel within the nine zones of London. At this point, you can get a Student Oyster Card.

How to get from London Stansted Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The A21 service runs to London Liverpool Street via Stratford (about one hour 20 minutes) and the A20 service runs to London Victoria Coach Station via Baker Street (about two hours). You can purchase your ticket and browse coach options online.

London Heathrow Airport

London Heathrow Airport is just 14 miles west of Central London. With four operational terminals, the airport covers nearly five square miles and is the second busiest airport in the world based on its international passenger traffic.

London Heathrow Airport flies direct from:

Algeria, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belgium, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Colombia, Denmark, Egypt, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United States, Uzbekistan, Vietnam. 

 London Heathrow Airport is best for:

Oaklands College, Amersham & Wycombe College, Buckinghamshire New University, Berkshire College of Agriculture, West Herts College, Creative Academy, Academy of Contemporary Music, University of Reading, University College of Estate Management, London College, Brunel University London, Royal Holloway – University of London, Birkbeck College – University of London, West Thames College, Queen Mary – University of London, University of West London, University of Roehampton, Uxbridge College, West London College of Business and Management Sciences, St Mary’s University, Kingston University, London School of Economics and Political Science, King’s College, Imperial College London, University College London.

How to get from London Heathrow Airport to the city centre by train:

From terminals two and three, you can take the Heathrow Express to London Paddington Station. If your plane lands in terminal four, you should first take the Heathrow Rail Train to terminals two and three, where you can then catch the Heathrow Express to Paddington. You can board the Heathrow Express directly from terminal five. The journey to Paddington takes about 50 minutes. You can plan your train journey and purchase a ticket online.

From Paddington, you can use the tube network to travel within the nine zones of London. At this point, you can get a Student Oyster Card.

How to get from London Heathrow Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

Right outside terminals two and three is Heathrow’s central bus station, which is open 24 hours. From terminal four, head to stops 13 and 14 outside Arrivals. If coming from terminal five, go to stops nine through 15 outside Arrivals. You can purchase your ticket and view more coach options online.

London Gatwick Airport

London Gatwick Airport is 29.5 miles south of Central London in West Sussex. National Cycle Route 21 passes under its South Terminal, creating nearly traffic-free conditions for cyclists and pedestrians. 

London Gatwick Airport flies direct from:

Austria, Belarus, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Croatia, Czech Republic, Georgia, Greece, Finland, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Iraq, Ireland, Kuwait, Latvia, Malta, Montenegro, Morocco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Rwanda, Russia, Spain, Switzerland, Tunisia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Ukraine.

London Gatwick Airport is best for:

Academy of Contemporary Music, Guildford College, University of Surrey, North East Surrey College of Technology, East Surrey College, University of Law, Creative Academy, Crawley College, Kingston University, University of Roehampton, Coulsdon Sixth Form College, Croydon College, Wimbledon College of Arts, St George’s – University of London, Goldsmiths – University of London.

How to get from London Gatwick Airport to the city centre by train:

Gatwick connects with four railways. The Gatwick Express offers service directly to London Victoria Station, departing every 15 minutes to complete the 30-minute journey. There are also options to take the Southern Railway, Thameslink and Great Western Railway into various parts of Central London. If you choose the Gatwick Express, book your tickets in advance and save 10%.

From Victoria (or other Central London stations), you can use the tube network to travel within the nine zones of London. At this point, you can get a Student Oyster Card.

How to get from London Gatwick Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

Gatwick’s bus services include destinations to: Heathrow, Central London, Bristol, Brighton, Birmingham, Oxford, Cambridge and Norwich. Local buses make stops on the A23. Most services operate from the lower South Terminal. You can purchase your ticket and view more coach options online.

Southampton Airport

Southampton Airport is in Hampshire, only four miles from the port city of Southampton. Its runway is built over the ruins of a Roman villa that was excavated in May 1925.

Southampton Airport flies direct from:

France, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland.

Southampton Airport is best for:

University of Southampton, Southampton Solent University, Southampton City College, Peter Symonds College Adult and Higher Education, University of Winchester, University Centre Sparsholt, Basingstoke College of Technology, South Downs College, Highbury College, University of Portsmouth, Chichester College, University of Chichester, Eastleigh College, Wyvern College, City College Southampton, Itchen College.

How to get from Southampton Airport to the city centre by train:

The Southampton Airport Parkway has services to seven key destinations in the UK, ranging from Southampton city centre (about seven minutes) to London Waterloo Station (about 70 minutes).

How to get from Southampton Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The U1C service makes stops at Southampton University, Southampton city centre, and the Waterfront (about 35 to 40 minutes). If you need to go further north, you can take the Megabus, whose stops include Oxford. You can view more coach options online.

Bournemouth Airport

Bournemouth Airport (previously called Bournemouth International Airport) is located in Dorset, 100 miles southwest of London. It was one of the first airports in Europe to implement the WebTrak radar replay system, which makes it possible to view all aircraft movement within the vicinity of the airport.

Bournemouth Airport flies direct from:

Czech Republic, Egypt, Greece, Finland, Ireland, Italy, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey.

Bournemouth Airport is best for:

Arts University Bournemouth, Bournemouth University, Bournemouth and Poole College, Bournemouth University International College, Anglo European College of Chiropractic, Kingston Maurward College, Weymouth College.

How to get from Bournemouth Airport to the city centre by train:

First, take the B1 Yellow Bus service from Bournemouth Airport to the city train station. From there, you can take the train to numerous destinations, ranging from Southampton (about 40 minutes) to London Waterloo Station or London Paddington Station (about two hours). View all destination options online.

How to get from Bournemouth Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

For destinations nearer to the airport, the Yellow Bus service 737 serves Bournemouth Square, Railway Station, Winton, Moordown, Northbourne and Parley Cross. You can view the bus route online.

Exeter Airport

Located in Devon, Exeter Airport (previously called Exeter International Airport) was used as a D-Day troop transport base by the United States Army Air Forces during World War II.

Exeter Airport flies direct from:

Cyprus, Egypt, Finland, France, Greece, Ireland, Malta, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey.

Exeter Airport is best for:

Exeter College, University of Exeter, Bicton College, South Devon College, Plymouth Marjon University (St Mark and St John), City College Plymouth, Plymouth College of Art, Petroc, Duchy College, Truro and Penwith College, Cornwall College, Falmouth University.

How to get from Exeter Airport to the city centre by train:

You can connect to the UK’s national rail network at five local stations: Cranbrook, Exeter Central, Exeter St Davids, Tiverton Parkway and Digby and Sowton. Take a taxi or bus from the airport to one of these stations, many of which travel north and include destinations to London Waterloo Station and London Paddington Station. You can view departure routes online.

How to get from Exeter Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

Take the 56 service to Exeter city centre or for further UK travel, to a nearby railway station. You can view the full bus timetable online.

Bristol Airport

Bristol Airport is situated in North Somerset. In January 2020, it became the first airport in Europe to offset all passenger journeys to and from the airport by road.

Bristol Airport flies direct from:

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cape Verde, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Lithuania, Malta, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Switzerland, Tunisia, Turkey, United States.

Bristol Airport is best for:

City of Bristol College, University of Bristol, University of West England – Bristol, University of Bath, Bath Spa University, Bath College, Norland College, Wiltshire College, University Centre Weston, Bridgwater and Taunton College, Gloucestershire College, University Centre Hartpury, University of Gloucestershire, South Gloucestershire and Stroud College, Royal Agricultural University – Cirencester, Swindon College.

How to get from Bristol Airport to the city centre by train:

The Airport Flyer Express departs every 10 minutes and takes about 30 minutes to reach the Bristol Temple Meads railway station. From here, popular destinations include Bristol Parkway, Bath Spa, Cardiff Central, Cornwall, and London Paddington Station. You can view more destinations and book tickets online.

How to get from Bristol Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The Airport Flyer Express travels to Bristol city centre in about 35 minutes. There are additional bus services that travel across the UK. You can view more destinations and book tickets online.

Norwich Airport

Located in Norfolk, Norwich Airport is statistically the least busy airport on this list!

Norwich Airport flies direct from:

Bulgaria, Cyprus, Finland, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Spain, Turkey.

Norwich Airport is best for:

University of East Anglia, Easton and Otley College, Norwich University of the Arts, Norwich City College of Further and Higher Education, College of West Anglia, University of Suffolk.

How to get from Norwich Airport to the city centre by train:

Norwich rail station is located in the city centre and takes about 20 minutes to reach by taxi or by the Airport Park and Ride bus. At the rail station, Abellio Greater Anglia and East Midlands Trains travel to destinations throughout the eastern UK, including London Liverpool Street Station. You can view destinations and book tickets online. 

How to get from Norwich Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The Airport Park and Ride located at the terminal travels to the city centre in about 20 minutes, but be aware it is not in service on Sundays. In about eight minutes, you can also take the Fifers Lane footpath from the airport to one of the two local bus stations located on Cromer Road. You can see the complete departure boards online.

Birmingham Airport

Birmingham Airport is only eight miles from the city centre and held an Olympic ceremony in April 2012 to commemorate the London 2012 Summer Olympics. Olympic rings on the airport’s tower could be seen from its main terminal.

Birmingham Airport flies direct from:

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, Pakistan, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United States.

Birmingham Airport is best for:

University of Birmingham, University College – Birmingham, Birmingham Conservatoire, Aston University – Birmingham, Birmingham City University, Birmingham Metropolitan College,  Newman University – Birmingham, University of Wolverhampton, Walsall College, Dudley College of Technology, North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College, Solihull College and University Centre, Coventry University, Henley College Coventry, Arden University, University of Warwick, Warwickshire College Group, New College Telford, Bournville College, Sandwell College, Halesowen College, Shrewsbury College of Arts and Technology, Harper Adams University, Keele University, Staffordshire University.

How to get from Birmingham Airport to the city centre by train:

The Birmingham Air Rail Link is a two-minute journey from the airport to the rail station. Birmingham International Station is connected to over 100 towns and cities, including Manchester, London Euston and multiple destinations in Wales. You can view railway options and purchase tickets online. 

How to get from Birmingham Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

You can board a bus directly at the airport or from Birmingham International Station. Destinations include the local Birmingham area, Oxford, Luton, Milton Keynes and Manchester. You can view further bus options online.

East Midlands Airport

East Midlands Airport in Leicestershire was voted Best Regional UK Airport for Customer Service in 2013 and supports over 6,000 jobs and generates around £300 million for the region.

East Midlands Airport flies direct from:

Austria, Barbados, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Cyprus, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, Tunisia, Turkey, United States.

East Midlands Airport is best for:

Derby College, University of Derby, Loughborough College, Loughborough University, New College Nottingham, Nottingham Trent University, Central College Nottingham, De Montfort University, University of Leicester, Leicester College, South Leicestershire College, Brooksby Melton College.

How to get from East Midlands Airport to the city centre by train:

There are four train stations near East Midlands Airport: East Midlands Parkway, Derby, Nottingham and Long Eaton. The Skylink bus connects these stations to the airport. Your choice of rail station will depend on your final destination. You can view train routes and book tickets online.

How to get from East Midlands Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The airport’s Skylink bus service runs direct to Nottingham, Long Eaton, Coalville, Derby, Leicester and Loughborough. To get to Ashby, Swadlincote and Long Eaton, take the ‘my15’ bus. Finally, the Airline 9 bus has services to Ashby, Swadlincote and Burton. You can find bus timetables and tickets online.

Doncaster Sheffield Airport

Doncaster Sheffield Airport (previously called Robin Hood Airport Doncaster Sheffield) is in South Yorkshire. The airport is home to three flight training schools: two for fixed wing aircraft and one for helicopters.

Doncaster Sheffield Airport flies direct from:

Barbados, Bulgaria, Cape Verde, Croatia, Cyprus, Egypt, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Jamaica, Latvia, Lithuania, Mexico, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Tunisia, Turkey, United States.

Doncaster Sheffield Airport is best for:

University of Sheffield, Sheffield Hallam University, Rotherham College of Arts and Technology, Dearne Valley College, Doncaster College and University Centre University Campus Barnsley, Selby College, North Lindsey College, Wakefield College, Kirklees College University of Huddersfield, Leeds College of Building, Leeds College of Music.

How to get from Doncaster Sheffield Airport to the city centre by train:

Catch the 57A or 57C bus from the airport terminal to Doncaster train station. Destinations from here include: Sheffield, Leeds, York, New Castle, Darlington, Hull, Scunthorpe, Retford, Lincoln and London Kings Cross. You can explore train routes and book tickets online.

How to get from Doncaster Sheffield Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The 57A and 57C buses have service to Doncaster, Bessacarr, Parrots Corner, Auckley, Cantley, Blaxton and Finningley. You can board these buses directly from the airport and view the complete route timetable online.

Liverpool John Lennon Airport

Liverpool John Lennon Airport (previously called Speke Airport) was renamed after The Beatles musician in 2001. It was the first airport in the UK to be named after an individual person.

Liverpool John Lennon Airport flies direct from:

Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Malta, Morocco, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey.

Liverpool John Lennon Airport is best for:

University of Liverpool, City of Liverpool College, Liverpool Hope University, Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, Liverpool John Moores University, Knowsley Community College, Hugh Baird College, Edge Hill University, University Centre St Helens, Wirral Metropolitan College, Bolton College, Salford City College.

How to get from Liverpool John Lennon Airport to the city centre by train:

Liverpool South Parkway is three miles from the airport and can be reached via bus services from the airport terminal. Liverpool South Parkway has links to Cheshire, Manchester, Yorkshire, the North East, East Midlands, West Midlands and connections to London Euston via Runcorn and Crewe. You can view railway options and book tickets online.

How to get from Liverpool John Lennon Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

There are multiple buses with service from John Lennon Airport, with the 86A and 80A running from the airport to Liverpool’s city centre. You can also catch buses with service to Bootle, St Helens and Huyton. You can see route options and book tickets online.

Manchester Airport

Located approximately nine miles from Manchester city centre, Manchester Airport is the busiest UK airport not serving London.

Manchester Airport flies direct from:

Austria, Bangladesh, Belarus, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Denmark, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Greece, Finland, Hong Kong, Iceland, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United States.

Manchester Airport is best for:

University of Manchester, Manchester College, Manchester Metropolitan University Futureworks, Royal Northern College of Music, Tameside College, University of Salford, Wigan and Leigh College, Stockport College, Mid Cheshire College, Nazarene Theological College, University Campus Oldham, Hopwood Hall College, University of Chester, West Cheshire College, Reaseheath College, University of Huddersfield, Kirklees College, Glyndwr University – Wrexham, Coleg Llandrillo, Bangor University, Coleg Menai.

How to get from Manchester Airport to the city centre by train:

It takes 20 minutes to travel from the Manchester Airport train station to Manchester Piccadilly station in the city centre, with trains departing every 10 minutes. From Manchester Piccadilly, you can travel to most places in the UK. A trip to London Euston Station takes about two hours. You can explore railway options and book your tickets online.

How to get from Manchester Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

Manchester Airport runs a 24-hour bus service to the city centre. Other destinations easily reached by bus are the 199 to Buxton, the 288 to East Didsbury and the 368A to Stockport. You can find complete bus timetables online.

Leeds Bradford Airport

Leeds Bradford Airport is situated in West Yorkshire, about nine miles from the Bradford city centre. Thanks to the airport’s recent environmental initiatives, 97% of the waste produced gets recovered or recycled.

Leeds Bradford Airport flies direct from:

Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, France, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey.

Leeds Bradford Airport is best for:

University of Bradford, Bradford College, Calderdale College, Askham Bryan University, Harrogate College, University of York, York College, York St John University, Leeds City College, Leeds Beckett University, University of Leeds, Leeds Art University, Leeds Trinity University, Leeds College of Music, Leeds College of Building, Wakefield College, Craven College, East Riding College, Bishop Burton College, University of Hull, Hull College, Hull York Medical School.

How to get from Leeds Bradford Airport to the city centre by train:

Bus services can connect you with rail stations in Leeds, Bradford and Harrogate. Leeds Station specifically has the most train platforms in north England, making travel to surrounding areas like Liverpool, Manchester and Newcastle easy. You can search your destination and purchase tickets online.

How to get from Leeds Bradford Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The Flying Tiger bus line has services to numerous surrounding locations, including Bradford, Shipley, Yeadon and Rawdon. The West Yorkshire Metro also has service for short-distance travel. You can view bus timetables and destinations online.

Teesside Airport

Teesside Airport (previously called Durham Tees Valley Airport) is located in Durham. The airport opened its international passenger terminal in 1966, with the ceremony led by Princess Margaretha of Sweden.

Teesside Airport flies direct from:

Bulgaria, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Spain.

Teesside Airport is best for:

Teesside University, South Tyneside College, University of Durham, New College Durham, Cleveland College of Art and Design, Middlesbrough College, Tyne Metropolitan College, City of Sunderland College, University of Sunderland, Gateshead College, University of Northumbria at Newcastle, Newcastle College, University of Newcastle Upon Tyne

How to get from Teesside Airport to the city centre by train:

Darlington rail station is just six miles from Teesside Airport and serves over 40 trains per day. The 12 bus has service from the airport to the rail station. (Darlington city centre is also just a 10-minute walk from the rail station.) Common destinations by train include York (30 minutes), Leeds (50 minutes), Bradford Interchange (one hour 30 minutes) and Manchester Piccadilly (two hours). You can search your destination and purchase tickets online.

How to get from Teesside Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

Take the 12 bus from the airport terminal. Its most popular stops are Middleton St George, Morton Park and Darlington city centre. You can view bus timetables and destinations online.

Newcastle Airport

Newcastle Airport, only six miles northwest of Newcastle city centre, holds long-standing partnerships with multiple football charities in the UK that use football to encourage community engagement and support disadvantaged youth. The airport frequently hosts the organisations to fundraise in the airport terminal.

Newcastle Airport flies direct from:

Austria, Australia, Barbados, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cayman Islands, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Hong Kong, Hungary, Germany, Greece, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United States.

Newcastle Airport is best for:

Newcastle College, University of Newcastle Upon Tyne, Northumberland College, University of Northumbria at Newcastle, Gateshead College, Tyne Metropolitan College, City of Sunderland College, University of Sunderland, South Tyneside College, University of Durham, New College Durham, Cleveland College of Art and Design, Teesside University.

How to get from Newcastle Airport to the city centre by train:

Newcastle Airport has a Metro light rail that departs every 12 minutes and is a 25-minute journey to the city centre. Newcastle Central Station is also located in the city centre. From here you can travel to a variety of destinations in the UK, including Darlington (30 minutes), York (one hour) and Edinburgh (2 hours).

How to get from Newcastle Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The X77, X78, X79 and 42A have service to different parts of Newcastle and surrounding areas. A bus stop is located opposite the airport terminal. You can view bus timetables and destinations online.

Cardiff Airport

Cardiff Airport (Welsh translation: Maes Awyr Caerdydd) is the busiest airport in Wales. It is also the only airport in Wales that offers scheduled international flights.

Cardiff Airport flies direct from:

Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Kuwait, Latvia, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Mexico, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Rwanda, Seychelles, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United States, Vietnam.

Cardiff Airport is best for:

Cardiff University, Cardiff Metropolitan University, Bridgend University, Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, University of South Wales, NPTC Group of Colleges – Neath Colleges, Swansea University, Gower College Swansea, Coleg Gir Sar / Carmarthenshire College, University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Pembrokeshire College, Aberystwyth University, Pembrokeshire College, Coleg Menai, Bangor University, Coleg Llandrillo. 

How to get from Cardiff Airport to the city centre by train:

Trains run from Rhoose Cardiff International Airport railway station every hour from Monday to Saturday and every two hours on Sundays. There is a 905 shuttle service between the airport and Rhoose station that costs £1 per person. The journey takes about 10 minutes.

Once arriving at Rhoose station, you can take the train to Cardiff Central rail station in approximately 35 minutes. Cardiff Central is the gateway to various destinations in Wales and the rest of the UK. You can search your destination and purchase tickets online.

How to get from Cardiff Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The T9 service, located directly outside the airport terminal, is a direct link to Cardiff Bay and the city centre. Services are available every 30 minutes and travel is free on the weekends. You can view bus timetables online.

Glasgow Airport

Glasgow Airport (Scottish Gaelic translation: Port-adhair Eadar-nàiseanta Ghlaschuserves) serves more Scottish destinations than any other airport. It was opened in June 1966 by Queen Elizabeth II.

Glasgow Airport flies direct from:

Austria, Barbados, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Switzerland, Tunisia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United States.

Glasgow Airport is best for:

University of Glasgow, Glasgow Caledonian University, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Glasgow School of Art, University of Strathclyde, University of the West of Scotland, City of Glasgow College, University of Stirling, University of Dundee, University of St Andrews.

How to get from Glasgow Airport to the city centre by train:

The Paisley Gilmour Street rail station is just one mile from Glasgow Airport and can be reached by the 757 bus service from the terminal. From Paisley Gilmour Street, you can take a 10-minute ride to Glasgow Central station. You can explore destination options in the UK and book tickets online.

How to get from Glasgow Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The Glasgow Airport Express bus service runs directly from the airport terminal to the city centre and Glasgow Central station in just 15 minutes. You can see a complete bus timetable and list of destinations online.

Edinburgh Airport

Edinburgh Airport (Scottish Gaelic translation: Port-adhair Dhùn Èideann) is the busiest airport in Scotland. In 2019, it served the most number of passengers in the airport’s history at almost 15 million people.

Edinburgh Airport flies direct from:

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United States.

Edinburgh Airport is best for:

University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh Napier University, Heriot-Watt University – Edinburgh, Scotland’s Rural College, Queen Margaret University – Edinburgh, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, University of Strathclyde, University of Glasgow, Glasgow Caledonian University, Glasgow School of Art, City of Glasgow College, University of West Scotland, University of Stirling.

How to get from Edinburgh Airport to the city centre by train:

Edinburgh Gateway rail station is on the airport perimeter and has connections to Fife, Perth, Dundee, Aberdeen, Inverness and northern Scotland. The airport also has a tram link to Edinburgh Park rail station. From here, destinations include Glasgow, Falkirk, Stirling, Dunblane and central Scotland. You can search destinations throughout Scotland and book tickets online.

How to get from Edinburgh Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

You can catch two bus services to Edinburgh city centre right outside the airport’s main entrance: the Airlink 100 (30 minutes to city centre) and the Skylink 300 (one hour to city centre). There are additional bus services as well that travel beyond the city centre. You can view bus timetables and destinations online.

Glasgow Prestwick Airport

Though one of the smallest airports in Scotland, Elvis Presley made a brief stop at Glasgow Prestwick in 1960 (during his only trip to the UK) when his plane stopped to refuel. He only stayed for about an hour, but thousands of fans still ran to the airport to greet him.

Glasgow Prestwick Airport flies direct from:

Greece, Portugal, Italy, Spain.

Glasgow Prestwick Airport is best for:

Scotland’s Rural College, University of West Scotland, City of Glasgow College, Glasgow School of Art, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow Caledonian University, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, University of Glasgow.

How to get from Glasgow Prestwick Airport to the city centre by train:

Glasgow Prestwick Airport has its own rail station with trains that are a 45-minute journey to Glasgow city centre. Show your boarding pass to the train conductor at the airport rail station and receive 50% off your ticket. Upon arrival in the city centre, you can take a train to further destinations from Glasgow Central station. You can view destinations and book tickets online.

How to get from Glasgow Prestwick Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The stop to catch the Stagecoach Western X77 Express is right outside the airport terminal. This is a direct service to Glasgow Buchanan Street Station which takes about 50 minutes. Buchanan Street Station is the primary bus terminal in Glasgow, making it easy to travel from here to other parts of the UK. You can search bus timetables and destinations online.

Aberdeen Airport

Aberdeen Airport (Scottish Gaelic translation: Port-adhair Eadar-nàiseanta Obar Dheathain) is located in Dyce, a suburb of Aberdeen. It is not just an airport but also the world’s largest commercial heliport.

Aberdeen Airport flies direct from:

Bulgaria, Denmark, Finland, France, Greece, Ireland, Latvia, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey.

Aberdeen Airport is best for:

University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen College, Robert Gordon University, Scotland’s Rural College, University of the Highlands and Islands, North East Scotland College.

How to get from Aberdeen Airport to the city centre by train:

The rail station nearest to the airport is Dyce, which is two miles away and easily reached by walk, taxi or the 727 bus service. Dyce Station runs from Aberdeen to Elgin and Inverness, with occasional trains to Glasgow and Edinburgh. You can also take a 10-minute train ride from Dyce to Aberdeen Station in the city centre. Trains from Aberdeen station also travel throughout Scotland and England. For further information, view train routes online. 

How to get from Aberdeen Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

Travel to Aberdeen city centre by bus is quite easy since the bus stop is right outside the airport. The journey to the city centre generally takes about 30 minutes. You can search bus timetables and destinations online. 

Inverness Airport

Inverness Airport (Scottish Gaelic translation: Port-adhair Inbhir Nis) is the main gateway for travel in northern Scotland and the Scottish Highlands. In 2005, the Highland Aviation Museum opened on the business estate next to the airport. The museum features displays about aviation heritage and six restored historical aircraft.

Inverness Airport flies direct from:

Australia, Brazil, Canada, Cuba, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Morocco, Mauritius, Netherlands, Singapore, Spain, Thailand, United States.

Inverness Airport is best for:

University of the Highlands and Islands, Cantraybridge College, North Highland College, Findhorn College, University of Aberdeen, Robert Gordon University, Scotland’s Rural College.

How to get from Inverness Airport to the city centre by train:

Inverness Train Station is a 15-minute taxi ride from the airport. You can also take the bus outside the airport to the rail station—be sure to get off at the Academy Street stop. The rail station has links to Aberdeen (two hours), Glasgow (three hours 15 minutes) and Edinburgh (three hours 45 minutes), as well as many destinations within the Highlands. You can view destinations and book tickets online.

How to get from Inverness Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The Jet Bus Services runs from the airport to Inverness city centre, with the journey taking about 30 minutes. There are also buses to the surrounding areas of Nairn, Forres and Elgin. Buses run more frequently at peak times of the day, so view the timetables online.

Belfast International Airport

Belfast International Airport (previously called Aldergrove Airport) is a major hub for cargo processing in the UK. Approximately 50,000 tonnes of cargo are processed each year, with a majority of Northern Ireland’s online orders arriving through the airport.

Belfast International Airport flies direct from:

Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Lithuania, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, United States.

Belfast International Airport is best for:

College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise, Queen’s University of Belfast, Stranmillis University College – Queen’s University of Belfast, Belfast Metropolitan College, Ulster University.

How to get from Belfast International Airport to the city centre by train:

The Ulsterbus 109A service makes stops from the airport to Antrim Train Station (15 minutes) and Lisburn Rail Station (50 minutes). You can explore train routes from these two stations online.

How to get from Belfast International Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The Airport Express 300 runs from the airport terminal to the city centre. The journey takes between 30 and 40 minutes. You can view destination information online. 

George Best Belfast City Airport

George Best Belfast City Airport (originally called Belfast Harbour Airport) was renamed in 2006 in honor of football legend George Best who grew up near the airport. 

George Best Belfast City Airport flies direct from:

Netherlands (Amsterdam). Otherwise, there are only domestic flights within the UK.

George Best Belfast City Airport is best for:

Stranmillis University College – Queen’s University of Belfast, Queen’s University Belfast, College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise, Ulster University, Belfast Metropolitan College, Stranmillis University College, Saint Mary’s University College Belfast.

How to get from George Best Belfast City Airport to the city centre by train:

The Sydenham train station is a 12-minute walk from the airport using a footbridge. From Sydenham, you can take a train to Belfast Central station or Great Victoria Street station. Each journey is between five and 10 minutes. Both these stations have connections across Northern Ireland and parts of the Republic of Ireland. You can view train routes and book tickets online.

How to get from George Best Belfast City Airport to the city centre by bus/coach:

The Airport Express 600 departs from the terminal every 30 minutes to complete the 10-minute journey to Belfast city centre. Depending on how many passengers need to be transported, departure times may vary, so review the timetables online.