Holiday season is quickly approaching and it’s time to start thinking about travelling home. Our advice is to plan your journey as soon as possible, as Christmas is a very busy time for travelling and there is a good chance there will be schedule changes and disruptions. Here are some tips on how to get the best deals when travelling home for Christmas so you can reach your destination without unnecessary complications.
Trains and Coaches
If you are travelling domestically, a bus, coach or train might be a good, affordable option. The Stagecoach Falcon service connects Plymouth with Bristol City Centre, Bristol Airport, Exeter, and Taunton, so it’s generally worth considering if you are travelling to the South West. National Express and Megabus also offer cheap coach fares to many destinations in the UK, especially if booked in advance. Train is probably the best option for reaching London, Bristol, Birmingham, and Cornwall as there are direct connections.
Don’t forget to check the timetables on the website of the transportation company you choose, though, and try to reserve tickets as soon as possible. Many coach lines will have special schedules for Christmas Eve and Boxing Day, and many won’t be working at all on Christmas Day. This is also true for trains. Use Trainline or GWR to find the best route to the desired destination.
You might be able to find some good deals and discounts if travelling by coach or train. National Express offers a Young Persons Coachcard that costs £10 for a year or £25 for 3 years and will provide you a 1/3 discount on all fares. Also, most train companies offer group tickets at much lower price than standard fares if several of you are planning on travelling together.
The NUS Extra card also offers some excellent discounts on selected train and coach journeys, and you can even get money off hiring a car. View their current travel discounts here.
Catching a Flight
If you are hoping to catch a flight, Exeter is the closest airport. It’s only 47 miles away from Plymouth and it’s easily reachable by bus or train. There are many domestic flights offered by Flybe, but international flight options are limited.
If you are travelling internationally, you’ll probably be able to find a flight from Heathrow or Gatwick airport to most destinations, including many budget flights. Both of these airports are easily reachable by train – just catch a train from Plymouth to Paddington station in London and there will be express trains leaving frequently from this station to both Heathrow and Gatwick. You could also consider catching a flight from Bristol or Cardiff international airports, both reachable by coach and train.
If none of this works for you, car hire might also be a good option. If you are visiting home for only a couple of days, you could hire a car for the whole period you are away. However, a more affordable option would be picking up a car in Plymouth and dropping it off at your destination, since many car rental companies offer the option of dropping off the car at a different location. If you have friends who are going to the same destination you could also share the car making this option even more affordable. On this note, ride-sharing apps like BlaBlaCar and Liftshare are also worth considering.
We hope you have found our tips useful and wish you a safe journey home this Christmas.