You can arrive in Plymouth by coach or train from an international airport (London Heathrow, London Gatwick, London Stansted or Bristol). Nearby Exeter also has a small International airport. The coach is slower and less expensive, the trains are more frequent. If you plan to travel by coach it is a good idea to book your ticket before you leave your home country; try the National Express and Megabus websites on which you can purchase tickets. To book trains use the Trainline website. It is possible to purchase a Britrail train pass for use on the UK rail network in your home country before you arrive in the UK. A Britrail Pass allows you to plan and budget for travel within the UK prior to your departure and is ONLY available to non-UK residents and must be purchased outside the UK.
You can also arrive by boat from Santander (Spain) or Roscoff (France) to Plymouth. A taxi service is available from the Continental Ferryport.
Transfers to Plymouth from international airports
Getting to Plymouth from London Heathrow Airport
1. By train to Plymouth from London Heathrow Airport
There are two routes to Plymouth:
a. Take the Rail-Air link coach which leaves from each terminal and goes directly to Reading railway station - change at Reading for a direct train to Plymouth.
b. Take the Heathrow Express into Paddington station in central London, where you change for the train to Plymouth. The Heathrow Express is faster but more expensive than the RailAir link. For all train timetables in Britain visit: National Rail. From the railway station in Plymouth you should take a taxi. This will cost about £10.
2. By coach to Plymouth from London Heathrow Airport
There are direct coaches normally every 2 hours from the central bus station at Heathrow Airport. You can either buy your ticket at the office in the bus station or in advance on the National Express website. It is much cheaper to buy a return ticket. From the bus station in Plymouth, you should take a taxi. This will cost about £10.
Getting to Plymouth from London Gatwick Airport
1. By coach to Plymouth from London Gatwick Airport
You must take a coach to London Heathrow Airport (these run at half-hourly intervals) and change there for the coach to Plymouth. There are direct coaches normally every two hours from the central bus station at Heathrow Airport, see above for further info.
2. By train to Plymouth, via Reading from London Gatwick Airport
You can buy a train ticket to Plymouth in the Arrivals Hall. Alternatively you can purchase your tickets in advance on the Trainline website. If you are planning to return to London within four weeks make sure you buy a return ticket. This is valid for 28 days and is much cheaper than two single tickets.The best way is to take a train from Gatwick Airport to Reading where you change and take the train to Plymouth.
Arrival at other airports
Your flight may also arrive at Stansted Airport (30 miles north of London) or Bristol Airport (110 miles north-east of Plymouth). From Stansted you will need to travel by train or coach to central London then continue your journey by train from Paddington Station or coach from Victoria Coach Station. For details of onward travel visit Stansted Express.From Bristol Airport you can take a bus to the Bristol Temple Meads railway station in the city centre, then travel by train to Plymouth. For more details visit Bristol Airport. From Exeter Airport you can take a bus or taxi to Exeter St. David's railway station in the city centre, then travel by train to Plymouth. For more details visit Exeter Airport.
Other useful information