Portsmouth and Southsea train station

  • 30 November 2020
  • 3 min read

If you’re planning to travel home for the Christmas break, do plan ahead to avoid unnecessary stress and could save you money. Check and follow the latest national travel guidance before your journey.

Before making travel plans, book yourself two Covid tests to make sure that you aren’t carrying the virus, and keep your loved ones safe.

Public transport

The current key advice for public transport users is:

  • Don’t travel if you have any symptoms of Covid-19, have tested positive for Covid-19 or need to self-isolate
  • Wear a face covering, including when you’re in any stations or ports, unless you are exempt
  • Carry hand sanitiser and wash your hands before and after travelling
  • Travel at quieter times if possible, avoiding the morning and evening peaks
  • Buy tickets online or pay with contactless payment methods if possible
  • Please keep your distance from other passengers
  • Always check with your provider before you travel in case of last minute timetable changes

Plan your train or coach journey and buy your tickets in advance as capacity is currently limited on public transport. Booking in advance may give you an opportunity to find cheaper tickets, but do check if you can get a refund if you have to amend your travel plans. 

To avoid booking fees, buy your train ticket online via National Rail. Coach travel can be booked online from National Express or Megabus. You can also save money with a TOTUM/NUS Extra card on most Megabus journeys, a Coachcard on National Express or with a railcard. National Rail also offers a handy cheapest fare finder.

If traveling by rail via London Waterloo, try to avoid booking for the weekend of Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 December, as engineering works and line closures in the area may result in longer journey times. 

Travel by car 

If you’re being picked up from Portsmouth or driving home, there might be additional congestion on the weekend of the 5 and 6 of December as it’ll be the first weekend after lockdown, and more people may be travelling. 

In particular there may be queues on the approach to Gunwharf Quays due to people Christmas shopping, and delays on the M275/A3 route into the city.

If you live in University halls of residence, please ensure that you plan accordingly to avoid missing your departure slot.

Remember not to travel if you have any symptoms of Covid-19, have tested positive for Covid-19 or need to self-isolate.