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Transportation from London to Southampton

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Planning on arriving London Heathrow around 9:40 am. Want to take train from the airport to Southampton. Then, will take taxi to hotel. Any idea of how long it will take? Hotel is asking for projected check-in time.

 

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2 hours ago, Calgon1 said:

Planning on arriving London Heathrow around 9:40 am. Want to take train from the airport to Southampton. Then, will take taxi to hotel. Any idea of how long it will take? Hotel is asking for projected check-in time.

 

 

There is no direct train from LHR to Southampton. Best (and cheapest) way is to use the National Express coach https://www.nationalexpress.com/en

They pick up from outside T5 and T4, but if you use the other terminals you will have a 10 min easy walk to the Central Bus Station (well signposted). The coaches run direct to Southampton Coach station (usually with a stop in Winchester) and take about 2hrs 15mins. Cost is around £15pp, but can be as low £5! The coaches are comfortable and usually have a loo on board and free wifi...luggage is effectively unrestricted, especially if you are travelling with an airline baggage allowance! We normally say book the coach about 2 hrs after your arrival time (to allow for customs etc), but if you were delayed, you can go to the National Express office in the terminal and re book for £5. According to which hotel you are thinking of, you might even be able to walk from the coach station to the hotel...check out google maps. On NE's site your departure is 'London Heathrow T?' and arrival 'Southampton Coach station'.

 

Simon

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Much the same as per Simon's post.

A Nat Express coach 90 minutes after your flight arrival time is about as early as you should risk, though because of the virus that may change..

Nat Express coaches aren't running at the moment, projected re-start date is 1st July.

Normally the schedule is identical each day, but currently coach times depend on your date of travel.

Coaches are direct, journey time about 2hrs 15mins, with one or two pick-ups en-route (sometimes Winchester, sometimes Basingstoke)., There are luggage limits - two cases of 20kg per passenger, not usually weighed & not strictly enforced so cases within your airline's limits (23kg ?) won't be a problem, but if you have massively more you need to book the excess baggage.

If your date is late summer onwards, the coach scheduled to depart at 11.15am (calling a few minutes later at T's 5 & 4) should be OK  - it arrives Southampton 1.45pm. There's a taxi rank at Southampton coach station

So if your hotel is in the city a provisional arrival time would be about 2.30pm.

 

Alternatively a (cancel-able) pre-booked private transfer will cost about £100 for the car. Try https://www.smithsairportcars.co.uk/ or https://westquaycars.com/ or http://www.aquacars.co.uk/

All are based at the Southampton end.

Expect to arrive in Southampton about 1.30 to 2.00pm

 

It concerns me a little that the hotel is asking now for a projected arrival time.

If your trip is next year, best to simply bookmark the need to advise the hotel after you've booked transportation.

If your trip is this year (bearing in mind that there are normally very few cruises out of Southampton beyond September) it may not happen at all. Various cruise lines are scheduled to re-start on various dates July-August, but that will depend on the progress of the spikey little virus. For the time being, I'd be inclined to avoid committing to any expenses for a cruise out of Southampton this season.

So a cancel-able hotel booking.

Nat Express fares from LHR to Southampton are about £23 (the bargain prices mentioned by Simon are from central London, set low to persuade folk to take day-trips - they don't apply to airport journeys because Nat Express knows that folk travelling to or from airports have to travel).

Nat Express fares aren't normally refundable,  but £23 per person is a sum that you might be willing to risk. Normally it's fine to book about 2 - 3 weeks before your travel date, but the coach capacity may be halved due to social distancing so who knows.

Private transfers are normally cancel-able with a few days notice.

 

When are you planning to travel ?

 

JB :classic_smile:

 

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Ahoy Simon and John Bull;

 

Thank you for your prompt responses. Wow . . . National Express is a significant difference over National Rail. Enough, in fact, that the savings will halve the cost of our pre-cruise hotel. Not sailing until next August. Confident that everything will be back to "the new normal" by then. Will hold off on purchasing Express tickets until final cruise payment date.

 

Post-cruise, we would like to spend a fortnight touring Cornwall and the Midlands for some genealogical research. Will probably get a Flexible 8-Day BritRail England Pass for that. Any recommendations on that?

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Posted (edited)

If you are planning on visiting several towns and villages for your research, I would think a hire car would be a better bet. Although you can get around major towns by rail, most small towns and villages no longer have stations, often have infrequent bus services and taxi fares can be quite high. Hiring a car would give you a lot more flexibility.  JB will be able to give you more info on car  hire from Southampton as he lives down that way! Just my thoughts.

 

Simon

Edited by sddsddean
spelling!!

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Again, thank you. My greatest concern on the car hire is that the sum total of my driving experience is on the wrong side of the road (from the British point of view). But. if the locals are adept at dodging tourists, I'm willing to give it a try . . . 😲   

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1 hour ago, Calgon1 said:

Again, thank you. My greatest concern on the car hire is that the sum total of my driving experience is on the wrong side of the road (from the British point of view). But. if the locals are adept at dodging tourists, I'm willing to give it a try . . . 😲   

 

Phew - you're looking to next year :classic_smile:

 

Yep, for the countryside in Cornwall you'd be better off with a rented car. The rail system is very limited thereabouts, you'll be hamstrung by dog-legs and timetables, and will still need local road transportation when you get tolerably close to places.

   My experience is that London drivers are pretty selfish and very unforgiving, but the further west you go - and you can't go further west than Cornwall, the more laid-back and generous and forgiving the drivers. Besides which, when you take to the little country lanes  some of 'em ain't wide enough for two so one of you has to find the entrance to a field or somesuch - and in Cornwall the norm is "after you", "no, after you" 

 

You'll be in a RH -drive car, so that's a big big help. There's more chance of trying to change gear using the door-pocket  that driving on the wrong side. (BTW if you need auto-transmission be sure to specify, most rental cars are stick-shift. Even if you're used to stick-shift, auto removes one complication)

And on busy roads, you simply follow the rest of the traffic

Risky times are

- first thing in the morning on a quiet road. So leave yourself a note on the steering wheel.

- after parking, or entering a gas station, particularly on the wrong side of the road. So aim to only do it on the nearside - or put that note back on the wheel.

- turning at a junction (town or country). No worries if the guy in front is doing the same or there's traffic waiting at that junction.

 

But there's a few other differences when driving in the UK. For instance no turn-out on red (red always means stop). you always drive in the nearside lane & overtake on the outside lane  - no "undertaking". And there's quite a few roundabouts (traffic islands). Read-up on advice sites on the web.

 

Plenty of local, national and international car rental agencies handy to Southampton docks. The exception currently is Avis - their nearest is at Southampton airport. More advice closer to the day if you ask, & will depend on the day-of-the-week to collect and where you want to return it.

 

For the Midlands, rail might be better for a furriner - around Birmingham in particular  there's plenty of rail and bus transportation. But that depends exactly where you want to go.

 

Best value on the railways if you use them a fair bit and there's two of you, is a "two-together" card. One card, costing £30, saves about a third on most routes. Only condition is that twe two of you travel together -so don't go falling-out with 'er-indoors.:classic_wink:. Similar cards for pensioners, families & students Figure whether its going to be worthwhile, at major stations like Southampton Central you can buy the card with your first tickets.

For times and fares https://www.nationalrail.co.uk/

The current situation is reflected in very limited trains - if the full timetable isn't available you may have to give it a month or two.

For railcards https://www.railcard.co.uk/?_ga=2.207279379.12333149.1589386406-171032925.1589386406

 

Hope this helps to get you started.

Feel free to ask for more, my social diary is a little empty at the moment.:classic_rolleyes:

 

JB :classic_smile:

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Posted (edited)

You chaps (see I'm trying to "speak English", as opposed to "talking American") are top notch! Thank you, again . . .

Edited by Calgon1

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6 minutes ago, Calgon1 said:

You chaps (see I'm trying to "speak English", as opposed to "talking American") are top notch! Thank you, again . . .

 

Awfully good show, old bean.:classic_smile:

It's so terribly rewarding when a Colonial has a jolly good bash at speaking the Queen's English, don't you know.

 

JB :classic_smile:

 

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5 hours ago, sddsddean said:

Sorry old man, having trouble following your banter!

 

Simon

 

Simon, my trucker friend, he said ........


" My 20 is the US of A but I'm modulating in mother tongue.  Respect, bro. 10/4 "

 

JB  :classic_smile:

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