Bagging yourself a cheap flight at this time of the year is a common occurrence with easyJet and Ryanair throwing plenty of offers at us to spark travel during the cold winter months. Getting something as exciting as a holiday with super low prices is dead exciting — that it until you realise what it will cost actually getting to the airport.

An analysis of the cost of getting to the top 10 busiest airports in the UK shows that Bristol is the most costly when looking at taxis, Uber, train and bus when available at an average of £2.01 per mile. Comparing this to the cheapest airport which is Birmingham, Bristol comes out as double the price with the Birmingham average at £1.01.

With no train available to the airport in Bristol, travellers must take the bus or a taxi, the bus costing £7 one way for a 7.8 mile journey which is 90pence per mile.  Birmingham in contrast will cost you £3 for the train or £2.90 for the bus at a distance of 9.3 miles, a much more reasonable cost for the distance covered.

Of the London airports, we found Stansted to have the cheapest cost per mile at an average of £1.12, and Gatwick having the most expensive average cost per mile at £1.38.  London airport express trains will be the quickest way to get to each airport, however these are also expensive journeys and Heathrow tops the charts here costing £22 for the 15 mile journey, an average of £1.47 per mile.

Although convenience is important when it comes to travel, considering the cost could save a great deal by taking a slightly slower route.

Here are our tips when booking air travel to help avoid those higher costs when possible:

  • Think about the time of day you are travelling – the early morning flight may be cheaper, but may be spenny for a taxi to get there. At the same time flying back too late could mean much less or no public transport
  • Check flights from all airports near you as you may find a much cheaper flight from an airport further away and you would pay less in total when combining flight price and transport to airport
  • When you are flying somewhere that you don’t speak the language, look up the best way to get to your accommodation at the other side and how much it will cost, so that you ensure you do not overpay or get caught in a tourist trap.
  • Check the cost of taking your car and paying for parking, if you are travelling in a larger party or travelling at inconvenient times then this could work out more cost effective.

All distance calculations were made from the central station in the main city that it is closest to.