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Travelling to Portsmouth

Transportation Options

There are several options, depending on how and where you are coming from. If you have a lot of luggage, we recommend that you use an alternative transport such as coach or airport pickup rather than an in-direct train.

Portsmouth is situated 70 miles south-west of London. International connections normally arrive at London Heathrow and London Gatwick, and the journey from both airports is approximately 1 hour 30 minutes by car.

Travel by car


You can contact Uber UK from abroad through the app, which you can download from the AppStore (Mac iOS) or PlayStore (Android). If you are already in the UK, you can also call them on 0808 189 7190.

Aqua Cars

Aqua Cars is the largest private hire company in Portsmouth and the South Coast. You can book through them directly by downloading the app or by calling them on (0044) 23 9265 4321.

Travel by coach

Students can travel by National Express coach which runs buses directly from both London Heathrow and London Gatwick airports to Portsmouth. This is the cheapest way to travel. Transfer times are approximately 3 hours (Heathrow) and 4.5 hours (Gatwick). The closest bus stops are University of Portsmouth and The Hard.

We recommend that you:

  • Book your ticket minimum 24 hours in advance of boarding the bus via the National Express website
  • Make your own way to the correct coach pickup point at the airport (which is determined by your arrival terminal) to board the coach.

All services stop at University of Portsmouth, which is a short walk to ICP and the main campus. The alternative stop is Portsmouth, the Hard, which is close to Gunwharf Quays and the Historic Dockyard.

If you arrive in Portsmouth outside of college opening hours, make sure you arrange an out of hours check-in with your accommodation provider. If this isn’t possible, you should arrange to be taken to a local hotel for the evening ready to come to ICP the next day. Find more information on hotel options on our Travel to Portsmouth page.

Travel by train

Train services are operated by a variety of different companies, so it is best to look for timetables and fares through National Rail. Some companies offer special deals, especially if booked in advance, on certain routes (usually longer distance routes). The closest train stations are Portsmouth and Southsea and Portsmouth Harbour.

Portsmouth and Southsea

Portsmouth and Southsea Station is the closest station to the campus, the halls of residence and the city centre. It is only a few minutes’ walk to ICP, and if you need a taxi to your accommodation, you can use the taxi rank outside, Uber (download the App on your Appstore), or Aqua Cars (a local taxi company).

Portsmouth Harbour

Portsmouth Harbour (The Hard) is the closest station to Gunwharf Quays and the neighbourhood of Portsea. The main coach station is also here, and there is a taxi rank outside.

Fratton Station

Fratton Station is the closest station to Fratton, Milton, Eastney and Southsea.

We recommend that you book your train ticket before travelling to Portsmouth.

Many train services offer either ‘Standard’ or ‘First Class’ tickets (and therefore seating). First Class is much more expensive than ‘Standard Class’, which most people find perfectly comfortable. It is advisable to book a seat in advance on long distance journeys, especially if you plan to travel on a Friday.

Please note that services can be disrupted due to strike actions. Make sure to stay updated on any changes to train times and available routes ahead of your journey.

London to Portsmouth Map

London map marked with Portsmouth location

Late arrival

If you arrive late in Portsmouth without informing a member of the ICP accommodation team, ICP will not be able to assist you with your first night’s accommodation.

The accommodation team is more than happy to help all late arrivals arrange their first night’s accommodation in advance. Please contact a member of the accommodation team for more information. Please note that if you land later than 19:00 (GMT), we recommend for you to stay in a hotel near your arrival airport for the night. ICP are happy to help you arrange this.

Temporary Accommodation

Although we strongly advise to book accommodation at least two weeks before flying to the UK, we understand that there could be challenges. Some of you might prefer to view the properties before you choose to live in them. If this is your decision, there are a few options for temporary accommodation.

The hotels below are a short walk away from ICP. This would offer you the opportunity to browse around the area to find the right student accommodation for you. You can book rooms on the providers’ websites or over the phone.

Please note that you must book accommodation in Portsmouth, within 30 minutes of ICP, to be able to register and start your course.

Premier Inn
1 Isambard Brunel Rd
(+44) 0333 321 9358

Stanhope Rd
(+44) 0871 984 6567

Ibis Portsmouth Centre
Winston Churchill Ave
(+44) 023 9264 0000

Holiday Inn Express
The Plaza Gunwharf Quays
(+44) 03333 209 360

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