#EdFringeBinge: How to Get to Edinburgh for £20

As I’ve banging on about A LOT recently: EdFringe can be freakin’ expensive!

Particularly if you sort of impulse buy like me. ‘OMG Get Your Own Back Is On AND there’s an all female production of Titus Andronicus AND there’s that magician dude who said he could kill someone with his skills! AND OMG, TINY SNOWGLOBES OF EDINBURGH, AND SNOWGLOBE PEN THINGS. £5?! BARGAIN!’ So basically, if I didn’t budget this entire trip, this would be me by the end of it:

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Yesterday, I revealed that you can in fact save money on show tickets, thanks to the Free Fringe. Which is helping me immensely! And today, I’m revealing yet another area that won’t eat into your budget, if you’re thrifty: transport.

I’ll be looking at what the cheapest options are based on these condtions: 1) I’m booking it last minute aka 1-2 weeks in advance, 2) getting a return from London to Edinburgh, and 3) leaving London Sunday evening, having Monday at the Fringe, then leaving Edinburgh Monday evening.

So, starting from most to least expensive…

 

4) Plane = £151 at least

If you’re wanting to get to the Fringe fast, then the plane is the best option.

By coach, car or train, you’re looking at between 8-9 hours.

By plane, it’s just over 1 hour! Plus you’ll be living The High Life! And in Scotland!

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And just realised that will make no sense to anybody who hasn’t seen The High Life…which is what that gif is from…it’s a Scottish comedy, starring Alan Cumming…WATCH IT!

You could literally fly up in the morning, and leave that very evening. Which is great if, like me, you’re only there for a day! But if you’re thinking of staying overnight or for longer it also works well, as you can actually take a decent amount of luggage and not try and squeeze everything into a handbag! AND, there’s even a ticket counter for you to collect your pre-booked Fringe tickets when you arrive at the airport.

And now the £1,000,000 question: how much does it cost…?

Well, fortunately not £1,000,000. But it’s still a bit pricey.

For a same day return, it’s £151.98, including booking fees.

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If you want to get up and back from the Fringe quickly, because of work commitments, then the plane is the best choice. But at a premium price.

 

3) Train = £140

Let’s face it: the train is probably the comfiest of the 4 options.

There are sleeper services with beds, there are food carriages, AND there are working toilets and not next to your seat ala coaches. One downside is it takes about the same amount of time as car or coach, at about 8-9 hours.

Well, that and the price.

Using the Train Line, the cheapest ticket is £140.20.

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Each.

So if you fancy comfort, go for the train. But thrifty thinkers, keep on reading!

 

2) Car = between £35-£70

ROAD TRIP TIME!

Good news: you don’t have a strange falling asleep on you shoulder, which you risk with the train and plane. Bad news: you won’t have the chance to fall asleep!

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Driving to Edinburgh is a pretty viable option: it takes about 7 and a 1/2 hours from London, but if you are going up with others you can take it in turns to drive. Just don’t be that friend who falls asleep, leaving the driver with no one to talk to!

It’s not the cheapest option: using Journey Price to plan the route and calculate petrol cost, it’s £146.90 for a return. Splitting it 2 ways if you’re a couple heading up for the Fringe, it’s £73.45 each. Or if you’re going with a group of friends, it’s even cheaper: £36.72 each if there are 4 of you. So literally the more the merrier, as you’ll be happy to be saving money!

 

1) Megabus Coach = £34, or even less…

Now, this is probably not the most comfy. Or quick. Or most obvious choice. Or even most people’s top choice generally. At just over 9 hours, it’s a bit of a trek up to Edinburgh. It’s basically like that episode of Coach Trip where before they go abroad they visit somewhere rainy in the UK. But without the fun stuff. Or Brendan.

But it does come with certain amenities. Some Megabus services do provide Wifi and charging points. Please, God, let my coach have wifi! And charging…PLEASE! And some come with 4 seats facing each other. Which is great when you have an odd number like 3 people going…like me!

But price wise, it is the cheapest option, if you think thriftily. At £34 each, that’s just cheaper than driving yourself. But there is another way you can save even more.

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And even get it down to £20!

Megabus accepts Tesco clubcard vouchers. For every £5 of Clubcard vouchers, that gives you £10 off Megabus tickets. So, last week when I booked it, thanks to my Clubcard vouchers what would have been £68, got cut down to £38. Just by trading in £15 in Clubcard vouchers for £30 worth of Megabus tokens!

Which when you half that works out as just £19 each. So even cheaper than £20!

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