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York is one of the most beautiful cities in the UK, but it is also extremely underrated. It is the perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of London. The best part: it is super easy to travel from London to York!
You can visit York as a day trip from London, but I suggest spending a weekend there to get a better sense of what York has to offer.
You’ll be happy you booked the extra day in York once you get there and fall in love with the city!
The two main ways to travel from London to York are by train and bus. The train is significantly faster than the bus, but it is also quite a bit more expensive. The bus takes almost five times as long as the train. It is a good option for people on a tight budget that are spending multiple days in York. It is not a good option for people taking a day trip to York from London. You’ll need to take the train if you’re doing a day trip.
In this post, we’re going taking an in-depth look at both the train and bus to help you decide how you want to travel from London to York.
Both modes of transportation have their pros and cons, and this post will help you figure out what is right for you!
Before We Get Started
One of my least favourite parts of travel is figuring out how to travel from one city to the next.
That’s why I create these travel guides for you!
Having all the information you need to decide how to travel from one city to the next is a time saver.
I’ve written a few other UK transportation guides. Hopefully they can help you plan your holiday!
Options One: Taking the Train from London to York
I think taking the train to York from London is your best option.
It is the most expensive option, but it is the quickest. If you’re only visit York as a day trip or are on a short holiday, it is worth the extra money to take the train rather than the bus.
One of the perks of taking the train (although it should not be a deciding factor) is you can connect to free wifi onboard!
This makes the journey go by quickly, and you can plan what you’re going to do in York on your way there!
Just be sure you protect your online information and data by installing a VPN on your devices!
You never know where or when someone might decide to try to hack into your phone and find your banking information!
How Long Does the Train from London to York Take?
The train is super quick!
You can travel to York from London in less than 2 hours! In many cases, it takes just over an hour to arrive in York from London!
The difference in time depends on how busy the tracks are and how many stops the train takes.
This information will be readily available when you’re booking your tickets so be sure to pay attention to it!
If you need to get to York as quickly as possible, make sure you’re buying a ticket for the fastest train possible!
How Much Does a Train Ticket Cost?
This is the part that hurts.
And I mean really hurts!
Train tickets in the UK are not cheap. In fact, they are outrageously expensive in my opinion.
It is hard to pinpoint an exact price because there are so many factors that go into it, but you can expect to pay between £20 and £100 for a one-way ticket.
On average, tickets costs between £29 and £54.
That is a pretty penny for an hour train ride! There is no way around it though.
A train ticket from London to York is going to be expensive, but there are some ways you can reduce the price.
Train tickets are less expensive the further you are from the departure date. They get more expensive the closer the day of departure is.
Tickets normally go on sale 3 to 6 months in advance, and you want to buy them as close to 3 to 6 months in advance as possible.
I know this is a bit of a pain. Especially if you’re more of a wing it kind of traveller like me.
But the advance planning is very much worth it when you realize how much money buying your ticket in advance can save you.
Other factors that go into the cost of a ticket include the time of day and day of the week you travel.
The number of stops also impacts the price of your ticket.
Essentially, if you travel during peak times on a train with limited stops, you will be paying a premium for the convenience.
If you travel during off-peak times on a weekday on a train that makes multiple stops, you will save money on your ticket.
Where to Purchase Train Tickets
You can either purchase train tickets online in advance (recommended) or buy them in-person at the train station before you depart.
I prefer to purchase my train tickets online in advance, so I can save money on my ticket!
There are multiple website where you can purchase train tickets, but I prefer to buy mine through the rail agency operating the route.
In the case of the London to York train, it is operated by London North Eastern Railway.
It is super easy to buy your tickets through their website. They accept foreign credit cards, and the process is quite smooth.
You may have to pick up your ticket at a ticket machine before departure, but it doesn’t take long at all.
You simply type in your reservation code and last name, and your ticket pop right out!
The other option is to purchase your ticket at the station before departure.
This is a great option for last-minute travellers or people who want to pay with cash.
The price of your ticket will probably be much more expensive though since it is so close to the time of departure.
Either way works great, and it really depends on the type of traveller you are!
Where Does the Train Depart from in London?
All train from London to York depart from Kings Cross Station.
Kings Cross Station is one of the largest train stations in London so be sure to leave yourself a lot of time to find your platform in the maze of the station.
Especially if it is your first time being in Kings Cross Station!
Kings Cross Station is located in central London and is serviced by the following underground lines:
- Hammersmith & City
Yeah. I wasn’t kidding when I said it was one of the biggest stations in London. Those are just the underground lines and don’t include the overground trains going to and from other cities!
There is clear signage throughout the station, so you shouldn’t have too much of an issue finding your platform.
If you have any issues, there are tons of information booths around the station you can stop and ask for help at.
Where Does the Train Arrive at in York?
You will arrive at York Railway Station.
The railway station is located a touch outside of central York, but it isn’t much of an inconvenience.
You can walk to central York in 15 to 20 minutes.
You can also hop on a bus if you don’t want to walk. Or, of course, you can always take a taxi to central York. It shouldn’t cost more than £6.
All things considered, York Railway Station is in a pretty good location, and it isn’t much of an issue getting from it to hustle and bustle of central York.
Pros of Taking the Train from London to York
- It is the quickest mode of transportation available
- Convenient departure and arrival locations
- Many trains run from London to York throughout the day
Cons of Taking the Train from London to York
- It can be quite expensive
- You have to plan and purchase your tickets in advance
- Luggage store can be limited on the train
Option Two: Taking the Bus from London to York
Your next best option is to take the bus from London to York.
The bus takes significantly longer than the train, so it isn’t the right option for everybody.
I would only recommend the bus if you’re on a longer trip and can dedicate the better part of a day travelling from London to York.
If you have the time in your schedule, taking the long way to York from London is a great way to save some money.
How Long Does the Bus from London to York Take?
The average length of the bus trip to York from London is 6 hours.
Yup. At least three times longer than the train. In a lot of cases, it takes 5 more hours to travel by bus than by train!
Your bus ride could take longer than 6 hours as well. If you get stuck in a traffic jam, there is no telling how long it will take you to get to York from London.
Just keep that in mind when you’re deciding how to travel from London to York!
How Much Does a Bus Ticket Cost?
This is the best part about taking the bus to York from London.
Bus tickets start at £7.50!
Sometimes you may have to pay a little more than that, but it will be way less expensive than taking the train!
You also don’t have to worry about booking your bus ticket in advance like you have to with the train.
Bus tickets don’t increase in price the closer you get to the date of departure, so you don’t have to stress about pre-planning your trip to York.
Where to Purchase Bus Tickets
Just like with the train, you can either purchase your tickets online in advance or buy them at the bus terminal on the day of departure.
There isn’t really a benefit to choosing one over the other so choose what works best for you!
There are a couple different website you can purchase bus tickets through.
I would check out both providers and find the price and departure time that suits you best.
Your other option is to purchase tickets at the bus terminal right before you depart.
Just be sure you look at the bus schedule online to know when the bus is departing and arrive at the station with plenty of time to purchase your ticket in case there is a line.
Where Does the Bus Depart from in London?
Buses from London to York depart from Victoria Coach Station.
It is right in the heart of London and is a super convenient location.
It is a very busy station though. Be sure you leave yourself plenty of time to figure out where you’re going and where you need to be.
The following underground lines have stops at Victoria Station:
The coach station is just steps away from the underground station and is quite easy to find.
Just follow the signs!
Where Does the Bus Arrive at in York?
Buses arrive at York Bus Station.
It is right beside the train station and is in a convenient location.
Just like the train station, you either need to walk, take a bus, or grab a taxi to get to central York.
It is a pretty easy journey though and won’t take long.
Pros of Taking the Bus from London to York
- It is the least expensive option
- Dedicated luggage storage under the bus
- You don’t have to purchase your tickets in advance
Cons of Taking the Bus from London to York
- It takes a long time to arrive in York
- There aren’t as many departure times as the train
- May run into traffic and be delayed
Option Three: Renting a Car and Driving
The final way you can travel from London to Bath is by renting a car and driving.
I don’t recommend this option unless it is part of a larger road trip around England.
Renting a car just to drive from London to York isn’t worth the hassle. By the time you pick up the car, drive it, find parking, drive back to London, and fill it up with gas, it doesn’t save you time or more.
So, there are really only two viable ways to travel from London to York: by train or by bus.
Both options have their pros and cons, and it really comes down to have much time you have and what your budget it.
I personally think it is worth the extra money to take the train, but I know not everybody has a big enough budget for that.
If you do take the bus, I highly, highly recommend you spend two or three days in York to make the travel time worth it.
If you have to take the bus and only have one day to spend in York, I think you’re better off staying in London and exploring more of it.
No matter how you choose to travel to York from London, it is well worth the journey.
York is a beautiful city, and it is a nice compliment to London. It gives you more of an idea of what life outside of London is like as well as different architectural styles.