Now you’re ready to say ‘goodbye’ to the airport and ‘hello’ to the city you’re visiting. First stop: your accommodation. How do you get there?
There are usually several options when it comes to transport from the airport. These vary in convenience, speed and price.
Taxis are very convenient and you can even reserve a taxi so that it’s ready and waiting for you when you arrive. Your driver will wait for you in the ‘arrivals lounge’ so you will see them as soon as you exit customs. Your taxi driver will be easy to identify because they will hold a sign with your name on it. If you don’t want to reserve a taxi, there is always a taxi rank when you exit the airport. These taxis are available for anyone to use and you don’t need to book them in advance. The advantages of taking a taxi are they can take you straight to your destination and are usually quick. The disadvantage is that they are expensive.
When you get in an unreserved taxi, the driver will ask you where you want to go. You can tell them the name of your hotel and which street it is on. If you are staying at an AirBnB, tell them the address. Here are some examples:
A: Where to?
B: The Grand Hotel on Livingston Road, please.
A: Where can I take you?
B: 55 Barony Street, please.
Most taxis only take cash, so make sure you have enough money before you get in the car. If you’re not sure, the driver should be able to tell you how much the journey will cost before you start the journey.
Remember: it is customary to tip your taxi driver when you arrive at your destination. It is your choice how much you tip, but around 10% of the fare is standard.
Trains offer quick travel straight to the city centre. Most large cities will have a train station at the airport for the convenience of travellers but this may not be the case in some cities and towns. This is a good option if you want to get to the city centre quickly but don’t want to pay the expensive taxi fare.
You should buy a ticket from the ticket office before you board the train. Sometimes you can buy your ticket on the train, but it is quite common to receive a fine if you get on the train without a ticket – so be careful! You can buy a return ticket if you plan to return to the airport using the train, or a single ticket if you think you will use different transport…or if you don’t plan to go back to the airport at all!
Look at the following dialogues to help you ask for a ticket:
A: How can I help you?
B: I’d like a return ticket to Central Station.
A: Here you go. The ticket is valid for two weeks.
A: Good morning. I’d like a ticket to Central Station, please.
B: Do you need a return ticket?
A: No, just a single ticket, thank you. I’ll be travelling to another city tomorrow and flying home from there.
Buses are slower than trains but they are also cheaper, so it’s a great choice for travellers who are on a budget. There will usually be some stops between the airport and the city centre, so this is a great option if there happens to be a bus stop close to your accommodation!
When it comes to buying tickets, buses are similar to trains. You can choose a single ticket or a return ticket depending on your needs.
You can often buy tickets from the bus driver when you get on the bus. If there is a ticket office, they will tell you if you need to buy the ticket from them or if you can buy it on the bus.
When you are planning your holiday, it’s a good idea to check which travel options are available from the airport you’ll be travelling to. It’s also important to consider the location of your accommodation when you decide which transport to use. It may be cheaper to take the train to the city centre and then take a bus to your accommodation, but it may be a lot quicker and not too expensive to take a taxi straight to your hotel.
To find your way to your transport, there are usually signs to direct you to ‘trains’, ‘buses’ and ‘taxis’. If you can’t see these signs, go to the exit and there will be taxis waiting there.