Travel from London to Alton Towers

Discussion in 'Your Alton Towers Trip Reports and Plans' started by Doxical, 23rd Oct 2019.

  1. Doxical

    Doxical TowersStreet Member

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    I'm going to make a trip to the UK (mostly London) with a few friends of mine. We decided to go in June 2020. I really want to visit Alton Towers and I still need to convince my friends to go there. So it's helpful to have a plan how to make this day trip happen.

    Btw this is not my native language. I apologize in case something sounds strange.

    I don't mind traveling a few hours in one day. I have done something like this before. I woke up very early, took the train, been in the theme park and I was back home around midnight.
    I think it's possible to do this for AT. I want to take a train..but which city? Stoke on Trent, Uttoxer oder Derby? I think Stoke on Trent or Derby would be a good choice. According to this website it only about 1 1/2 hours to get there.
    Now we need to get to the park. This site recommends a bus from Stoke. Would someone of you agree? What about taking a taxi?

    I feel uneasy thinking about delays. Like what if we miss the train back to London. I need a good time table.

    Any help is appreciated!
     
    Matt N and skyscraper like this.
    Posted 23rd Oct 2019
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  2. speedy

    speedy TowersStreet Member

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    The timetables may change next year, but based on the options available now:

    Having a look at Google Maps, I reckon your best bet is a direct train to Stafford then the bus to Alton Towers. I'm not even sure if the bus from Stoke-on-trent is still running. https://support.altontowers.com/hc/...1-How-do-I-get-to-Alton-Towers-Resort-by-Bus-

    Its going to be expensive, with four people could you hire a car instead? Or you can get a direct train to Stoke-on-trent then a taxi. It was about £70 in total for the taxi when I went a couple years ago, so a bit more expensive than the bus but it was worth it as we got to the park for opening.

    If you're taking the train then book early, as tickets get very expensive at short notice.
     
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    Posted 23rd Oct 2019
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  3. grrrr

    grrrr TowersStreet Member

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    We’re doing the train from London to Stoke and then taxi option, next week. We’re staying overnight though, I don’t think I’d want to do the whole shlep there and back in one day.

    Could you convince your friends to go up the night before, stay somewhere local and then spend the next day at the park before heading back to London?
     
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    Posted 23rd Oct 2019
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  4. speedy

    speedy TowersStreet Member

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    We got the train from Preston to Stoke (changing at Crewe) then taxi. It was a long day :D
     
    Doxical likes this.
    Posted 23rd Oct 2019
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  5. Rick

    Rick TowersStreet Member

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    @Doxical If someone in your party drives, I'd consider taking a hire car. London > Alton > London via public transport is joyless, particular in a single day.

    Take the tube to Edgware, hire a car from Europcar next to station and boom down the M1 to Alton.

    @speedy ... I can hear you sigh from here.
     
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    Posted 23rd Oct 2019
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  6. speedy

    speedy TowersStreet Member

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    You should read my original post more closely :)

    Worth noting though that the train/taxi would actually be 45 mins or so quicker each way.

    Hiring a car must be cheaper though.
     
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    Posted 23rd Oct 2019
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  7. Rick

    Rick TowersStreet Member

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    @speedy Haha! Apologies, I skipped it right past it thinking you'd be advising them to get a couple of tandems - I never thought I'd see the day!
     
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    Posted 23rd Oct 2019
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  8. rob666

    rob666 TowersStreet Member

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    Location:
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    Train and taxi to a two night stay at the Chained Oak.
    Slow walk on the River Churnet up to the cafe, pub crawl round the village in the evening.
    Second day at the Towers.
    Absolute heaven.
    Blow their minds with the real British countryside.
     
    Posted 24th Oct 2019
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  9. Doxical

    Doxical TowersStreet Member

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    thanks everyone!

    Neither of us got a driver licence unfortunately :sweatsmile: (long story). We are a group of 4 people so sharing the taxi would not be that expensive I guess.

    What time are you talking about? A few months before the trip? And where (website)? I haven't ridden a train in the UK besides the tube in London many years ago.

    Sounds lovely! I need to adress this to my friends.
     
    rob666 likes this.
    Posted 24th Oct 2019
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  10. grrrr

    grrrr TowersStreet Member

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    Train tickets generally get released about 12 weeks ahead of your journey date - so you'd need to book in mid to late March for June.

    Use https://www.nationalrail.co.uk/ to search for a journey, and when you click buy on that website it'll take you through to the appropriate train operating company website where you can purchase the tickets. Most providers can send you e-tickets that can just be used on a mobile phone, or printed at home. Or you can choose to pick them up from the station where you're starting your journey.
     
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  11. DiogoJ42

    DiogoJ42 TowersStreet Member

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    It'd usually cheaper to get a train to a proper theme park in Oyrope from London, than to Towers.
     
  12. grrrr

    grrrr TowersStreet Member

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    Not if you buy a ticket in advance and travel off peak. You can get tickets for less than £10 from London to Stoke, and then a taxi split between three or four of you will only be another £10 each. So £20 each way per person - at that price you'd never get past Dover, surely?

    (I'm ignoring Ryanair because I value my dignity ;) )
     
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  13. speedy

    speedy TowersStreet Member

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    I had a look (my website of choice is currently Loco2) and the cheapest single to Stoke was at least £35. How did you find those tickets?
     
  14. grrrr

    grrrr TowersStreet Member

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    Just nationalrail.co.uk's journey planner!

    [​IMG]
     
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  15. speedy

    speedy TowersStreet Member

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    Ah, I was looking at fares in the morning. The Virgin services are much quicker but also a lot more ecpemsive
     
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  16. MattyH

    MattyH TowersStreet Member

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    If you're visiting from abroad then a Brit rail pass might be off use not only to get to and from Alton Towers but for any other train journeys you make. More information available here: https://www.britrail.net/

    A quarter past four or five arrival isn't really useful for a day trip to Alton Towers though?
     
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  17. grrrr

    grrrr TowersStreet Member

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    Not a day trip, but as someone suggested earlier - arrive the evening before, enjoy the countryside on day one, then go to the towers on day two.
     
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  18. Doxical

    Doxical TowersStreet Member

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    I have done a lot of research.
    I asked my friends about staying in Stoke for a night, but sadly they refused. Now back to the daytrip.
    I was running a test on booking a ticket in advance. I used the same data every time on trainline and nationalrail. Don't take the date seriously, I'm just checking. Screenshots below.

    Date: Feb 19 2020
    Arriving before 8am (travel time must be 1 1/2 hours)
    Departure after 7pm
    4 adults
    standard ticket
    return same day

    trainline:
    [​IMG]
    (I tried to change the second date to the same day, but it didn't let me..)

    nationalrail:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Now that's about 50 pounds per person. I asked two guys from the UK about this train stuff. They said they pay about 30-40 pounds from London to Manchester...that's cheaper although it's further afar ^^" (They didn't tell which time they set off or they choose one way without return)

    What du you guys say about the price? Do I have to change stuff?

    Edit:
    I found a ticket option which would be nice for us.
    "Anytime" or "open return", but I guess they are a pricey idk We would be more flexible after the park closes. Like for example we queue for a ride before 4 pm and we have to wait for another hour. Or we get problems traveling back to Stoke. Something can always happen...
     
    Last edited: 12th Dec 2019
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  19. MattyH

    MattyH TowersStreet Member

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    The really cheap tickets are mostly only available on services that aren't busy. It's complicated but if you want to you can buy multiple tickets and take a slightly slower route and save about £50-60 in total. This is called split ticketing, these two website can help you with this.

    https://raileasy.trainsplit.com/
    https://www.splitticketing.com/
     
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  20. Boothy

    Boothy TowersStreet Member

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    I find its always worth buying an open return if the price difference isn't that much
     
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