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Getting to Bristol from LHR

Getting to Bristol from LHR

Old Apr 1, 2024, 9:32 pm
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Getting to Bristol from LHR

I have relatives in Bristol and would like to meet them on my next trip. I hear it's a happening town too and look forward to getting there. I want to spend a few days there then head to my moms in Kent. There's probably no easy way to do this is there? What train routing will get me there?

Thanks
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Old Apr 1, 2024, 10:29 pm
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  • A quick search on Trainline showed me that you can go from Paddington via Great Western Railways direct to Bristol Temple Meads Station in about 90 minutes
  • You can go direct from LHR to Paddington via HEX, Lizzie, or Piccadilly line.
  • To go to Kent from there, yes, you would return to Paddington, but that's easy since you just came!
  • Then it looks like you can either take the underground to Victoria Station and Southeastern to Kent
  • OR head to St. Pancras Intl from Paddington and take Southeastern to Kent. I have taken SE from St. Pancras and would probably do that. It's straightforward. They have an app, so you can buy direct.
Lots of people buy from Trainline but I only use it to scope schedules. I tend to use the train apps. Probably just preference.
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 12:55 am
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Railair coach to Reading and train from there.
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 1:08 am
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Originally Posted by travelingdrsuz
Lots of people buy from Trainline but I only use it to scope schedules. I tend to use the train apps. Probably just preference.
Yeh, those in the know will not buy anything from the Trainline. If here is any need to refund a ticket they impose unreasonable admin fees that you would not have to loose if you bought the same ticket from one of the train operating companies. It doesn't matter which one you buy from but it can help to buy from the the company you plan to use for your journey.
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 3:08 am
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Trainline also have a tendency to sell tickets for trains that don't exist, and some of their travel alert messaging is very misleading. A big avoid.
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 4:25 am
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Train is the fastest and (if you're travelling First Class) most comfortable way of getting from London to Bristol. But there are also National Express buses direct from the airport (T5 and T2/3) to Bristol city centre that are as comfortable as Standard class on the train. You have to book a specific bus but can add flexibility to the ticket for a few pounds, in case your flight is late. To change to a bus other than the one booked you have to go to the National Express desk in the Arrivals area.
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 6:58 am
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great info all thanks.
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 10:25 am
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Originally Posted by Swanhunter
Railair coach to Reading and train from there.
You really may as well get a coach direct from LHR.

Paddington in particular is a total waste of time and money.
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 12:14 pm
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Originally Posted by Swanhunter
Railair coach to Reading and train from there.
This would be my preference too - although probably no quicker than the bus on paper, for me it would depend on whether the bus was more or less nonstop, and the day of the week - i.e. if the M4 motorway had any weekend closures in place.
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 12:16 pm
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For me train is a much more comfortable experience. Buses are a bit nausea inducing.
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 12:32 pm
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Originally Posted by expatboy
This would be my preference too - although probably no quicker than the bus on paper, for me it would depend on whether the bus was more or less nonstop, and the day of the week - i.e. if the M4 motorway had any weekend closures in place.
Have you tried it?

The timing is awkward - timed to depart Reading almost the same time as the Bristol service comes in so you generally have to wait for the next one. And traffic in and out of Reading can be utterly atrocious.

If you are happy with buses then take the National Express direct service. RailAir is a waste of time and money.

Personally I switched from NX to train to PAD and back out on EL two years ago and haven't looked back. They even hiked the price of the coaches up so it's not that much more on the train (off peak).
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 1:06 pm
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The National Rail site returns a rail routing of Elizabeth Line only one stop to Hayes & Harlington, then flipping directions on the Elizabeth Line and taking it to Reading, then picking up Great Western to Bristol from there. That is the cheapest rail option and almost exactly the same amount of time as going HEX-Padd-Bristol, and same amount of time as the bus. It also offers more flexibility because that train routing goes every half hour or so, and the buses run every hour, so you have less waiting time. The change of direction at H&H probably not fun with big luggage, but personally I would like this much more than a bus ride. If you add a few dollars and buy as an offpeak one way, you can get on any train on this route as long as its off peak timing.
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 2:02 pm
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How long would that coach take? Does it make 10 stops along the way? Is there a loo in it?
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 3:00 pm
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well i suspect the only possible operators will be National Express, and possibly also Megabus or Flixbus. You may wish to have a look at their sites to see what the timings and route will be for each. They should all have a loo onboard.
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Old Apr 2, 2024, 3:11 pm
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Originally Posted by enviroian
How long would that coach take? Does it make 10 stops along the way? Is there a loo in it?
2 hours, most run non stop these days I think (max would be a stop at one of the junctions by reading), has a loo
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