You could start looking for cheap flights to Edinburgh, perhaps trains or even buses or you could be slightly unconventional…
Let’s face it, if you live in mainland Europe you could get your goggles and your flippers on and be the first person to swim the North Sea to Scotland!
The same goes for the Atlantic. You’re guaranteed a free pint of beer when you arrive. You could even do it on two wheels or your own two feet if you’re feeling particularly active.
Bike broken? Can’t hack the breast stroke? Here are my insider tips on how to get to Edinburgh for mere mortals…
Use a mode of transport with an engine. You could either consider cheap flights to Edinburgh International Airport, take a bus to Edinburgh Bus Station or use the UK’s national rail network.
Prefer to keep your feet on the ground? Consider traveling to Edinburgh by bus or train.
The low down on low cost
Low cost airlines such as Easyjet and Ryanair fly to Edinburgh and Glasgow from all over Europe. If you live in the United Kingdom or even abroad, getting to Edinburgh is a piece of cake and will not irritate the bank manager.
Ryanair fly to an impressive number of destinations across Europe. These destinations are Barcelona, Girona, Berlin Schoenefeld, Billund, Bologna, Bordeaux, Bratislava, Bremen, Brussels Charleroi, Dublin, Dusseldorf Weeze, Faro, Frankfurt Hahn, Gdansk, Gran Canaria, Kaunas, Krakow, Lanzarote, Lodz, Luebeck, Malaga, Malta, Marrakech, Marseille, Memmingen, Oslo Torp, Palma, Pisa, Poitiers, Poznan, Rome Ciampino, Shannon, Stockholm Skavsta, Tampere, Tenerife South and Zadar.
With such a huge number of airports to choose from there is a good chance you can find an airport near your home.
Ryanair flights can cost as little as £5/7 Euro one-way if booked in advance. More on this very important point later!!
Let’s take a look at the UK’s other major low cost airline, Easyjet.
This airline flies to Edinburgh from London Gatwick, London Luton, London Stansted, Bristol and Belfast. Within the UK, one-way flights can be as cheap as £20/25 Euro, if you book early enough.
If you come from mainland Europe, you can find cheap flights to Edinburgh with Easyjet from Alicante, Amsterdam, Geneva, Krakow, Lisbon, Lyon, Madrid, Milan, Munich, Nice, Palma De Mallorca and Paris Charles De Gaulle
Another option to consider is a flight to Glasgow, Scotland’s largest city. Glasgow is only an hour’s drive or an hour’s train ride from Edinburgh and therefore a solid option if you can’t find cheap flights to Edinburgh from your city.
Easyjet fly to Glasgow from London Gatwick, London Luton, London Stansted, Bristol, Belfast, Alicante, Malaga, Palma De Mallorca, Ibiza, Berlin Schoenefeld, Paris Charles De Gaulle, Faro and Geneva.
Of course, there are many other low cost airlines flying to Edinburgh from a number of countries across Europe. I recommend that you check the websites of the following airlines for good deals – Jet2, Aer Lingus, bmibaby, flybe, German Wings, Norwegian, Thomsonfly or indeed any other local low cost carriers that may fly into Edinburgh.
In recent years, major airlines such as British Airways and British Midland have suffered as a result of the price-war with low cost airlines.
This has forced many of them to make fundamental changes to the way they run their businesses and their pricing models. As a result, customers have been rubbing their hands together with glee!
It is always a good idea to check the major airlines’ airfares before booking with a low cost airline. It is often possible to get a similar price with a major airline if you book far enough in advance. This also goes for major airlines in your native country!
Ready for some top tips on how to make flying to Edinburgh as smooth and as cheap as possible??
Unfortunately, your mum and dad were right when they said that nothing in life was free. Apart from public libraries. Libraries are cool.
Low cost airlines have become progressively sneakier over the past 5-10 years. Sadly, it is often the case that people think they have just secured themselves the air travel deal of a lifetime when suddenly…tax? fuel surcharge? check-in fee? baggage restrictions? on-board pay-per-pee system?
Ok the last one’s a joke but who knows what the future will bring. There’s no doubt about it – flying around the world has become pleasingly affordable but boy, you need to be wary.
So folks…the very first rule. ALWAYS book at least a month in advance. I have hopped back and forth between Scotland and Germany for years and never paid more than £60 one-way. Don’t go to Ryanair’s website a week before your flight is due to leave expecting to throw a few coppers at them.
If you do find cheap flights to Edinburgh in this way, you have the luck of the Irish. So…book in advance. Right…
…beware of the extra charges for tax and fuel. Some low cost carriers add these charges after you have selected your flight. So wait until you see the final price before jumping around the room with delight.
It is unusual to find a flight that costs £5 including tax and fuel surcharge, although I do know someone who flew from Munich to London and back for £20 all up. So it can happen!
Ahhhh ye olde baggage restrictions. Where on earth do I put my GHDs??
Let’s be honest here – budget airlines love it when you take lots of luggage with you, in fact, they literally see dollar signs. So my advice is, take as little as possible. Beat them at their own game! Their business model is based on minimalism. Base your consumer behaviour on the same principle.
As I mentioned above, before you phone your friends to brag, always factor in the extras, baggage being one of them. In keeping with the way of the modern world, low cost airlines don’t want to talk to you in person. So some of them will actually charge you to check-in in person. In this case, check in online. No brainer.
There is, of course, a reason why low cost airlines keep their prices low. Their costs are low.
Arguably the most important factor in this is the location of the airport. Low cost carriers almost always fly to airports located a fair distance from the centre of town.
Those who live in the south of Germany will know that Memmingen (Munich-West) is nowhere near Munich. In fact, it’s about an hour’s drive from Munich.
Fortunately, Edinburgh International Airport is not in the middle of nowhere. Getting from Edinburgh Airport to the city centre is very straight-forward, affordable and will take around 30 minutes.
All this information about extra charges supports my recommendation to look for cheap flights to Edinburgh with major airlines like British Airways. Such airlines tend to have a more holistic approach. You pay for a complete service leaving you to concentrate on enjoying yourself.
All in all, it’s easy to find cheap flights to Edinburgh from numerous cities across Europe as long as you plan ahead and pay attention to detail.