Great Britain’s largest airline is British Airways, which offers long-haul flights in all directions. Virgin Airlines is the second largest airline that also offers numerous long haul flights. Other airlines are BMI and Easy-Jet. There are 471 airports of various sizes in the UK. The UK’s “flagship airport” is London Heathrow Airport, one of the busiest airports in the world. London Gatwick Airport and Manchester International Airport follow closely behind Heathrow Airport. Other airports of great importance for domestic and international flights are: London Stansted Airport (headquarters of the low-cost airline Ryanair), London Luton Airport (headquarters of Easy-Jet); and outside London: Birmingham International Airport, Cardiff International Airport, Glasgow International Airport and Belfast International Airport. Cardiff’s Cardiff International Airport is located in Rhoose – around 20 km southwest of downtown Cardiff. Daily flights to Germany are offered by KLM via Amsterdam.
Before the opening of the Channel Tunnel and the start of air traffic, entry into England was only possible by water. UK’s main port cities are Aberdeen, Belfast, Bristol, Cardiff, Dover Glasgow, Hull, Liverpool, Manchester, Plymouth, Portsmouth and Tyne. Passenger ferries operate internationally to nearby countries such as France, Ireland, Belgium and the Netherlands. Within Great Britain, for example, ferry lines connect Scotland with Northern Ireland and Southampton with the Isle of Wight.
You can enter Great Britain by car via the following ferry routes and then on to Wales
Calais – Dover
Calais – Dover
Hoek van Holland – Harwich
Rotterdam – Hull
Zeebrugge – Hull
The UK rail network is one of the oldest in the world and consists of two networks. That of Great Britain, connected to Europe through the Channel Tunnel opened in 1994, and the Northern Irish rail network, connected to Ireland. All in all, both networks cover 34,000 km, 40,000 bridges and 2,500 train stations. Similar to the UK bus network, UK rail transport is exclusively in the hands of private companies coordinated by the Network Rail organization. The largest railway companies are Virgin Trains, GNER, Connex and the First Group. Since November 2007 there is a new, extremely fast connection with the “Eurostar” from the new St. Pancras train station in London to the Gare du Nord in Paris. The train only needs 2 hours and a few minutes for the route, which of course leads through the Eurotunnel.
Britain’s bus network was largely privatized under the Transport Act of 1980. Northern Ireland is an exception, where the bus and train lines are still controlled by the state’s Translink. Coach buses, mainly on the National Express line, provide long distance connections within the UK. At the regional level there is a large number of bus providers that are also privately owned.
cars Rental cars can easily be booked from all major car rental companies, locally or from Germany.
When it comes to taxis, a distinction must be made between the official black cabs and the minicabs. Minicabs are normal private cars. Black Cabs are quite a bit more expensive compared to the minicabs. There is a surcharge at night. Be careful with the minicabs: you should always set the price beforehand and order the taxi directly from the company by telephone. You should never intercept a minicab from the street, as there are many illegal minicab drivers who are traveling without a license.
The road network in Great Britain comprised around 392,321 km in 2003, of which 3,476 km were motorways. The road network of Wales is approximately 15,787 km. The distances in Wales are rather short – after all, the extension of the country in north-south direction is around 275 km and in east-west only around 100 km.
To avoid trouble with the police or even the courts, drivers should strictly adhere to the traffic regulations in force in the country. Regardless of the information provided here, it is advisable to obtain more detailed information from ADAC, AvD or the British transport organization AAA.
- Urban: In built-up areas there is a speed limit of 30 miles/h = around 48 km/h
- Country roads: On country roads (marked with an A or B followed by a number) there is a speed limit of 60 miles/h = around 96 km / h. Multi-lane highways with a median are excluded. The speed limit here is the same as on motorways.
- Motorways: On motorways (Motorways: marked with an M followed by a number) there is a speed limit of 70 miles/h = around 112 km / h
In addition, it is of course necessary to pay attention to the current local speed limits, which are indicated by traffic signs.
It should be noted that across the UK, exceeding the maximum speed limit by 50 km/h can result in a fine of up to € 5,600.
There is left-hand traffic in Wales and throughout Great Britain. The high number of roundabouts, the roundabouts, which regulate traffic instead of traffic lights at many intersections, is astonishing. Despite left-hand traffic, “right before left” applies everywhere in Great Britain, so vehicles already in the roundabout have right of way over vehicles entering. A double straight cross line at an intersection means “stop”, “give way” means an interrupted double cross line or the inscription “GIVE WAY”, “no stopping” shows a double white line along the middle of the street, “no parking” means a red one or yellow markings on the edge of the road,
alcohol limit In Great Britain and thus also in Wales there is a limit for the blood alcohol level of 0.8 per mille.
A very detailed description of the traffic rules in Great Britain and therefore also in Wales can be found at the following URL:
International license plate
The UK international license plate is:
Wales: Tourist Offices
Great Britain Tourist Office
Responsible for Germany, Austria, Switzerland
VisitBritain – British National Tourist Board
Tel: 0049 – (0) 30 – 315 7190
Northern Ireland Tourism Board
St. Anne’s Court
59 North Street
Belfast BT1 1NB
Tel: 0044 – (0) 28 – 9023122
Wales Tourist Board
First and 10th Floor
2 Fitzalan Road
Cardiff CF24 0UY
Tel: 0044 – (0) 2920 – 499909
Scotland`s National Tourism Board
PO Box 121
Livingston, EH54 8AF
Tel: 0044 – (0) 1506 – 832121
1 Palace Street
London, SW1E 5HE
Tel: 0044 – (0) 207 – 578 1000