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Glasgow - Edinburgh Transportation

Hi all,

I have a conference to attend in Glasgow but missed the window to book a decently priced hotel, BnB or apartment.

I am thinking of staying in Edinburgh and going back and forth every day. How easy is it to do that? I assume I’d go my train city center to city center?

Am I missing a cute town outside of Glasgow that I could stay and take a quicker train or bus into town daily, yet get lower priced accommodations?

Thank you!

Posted by
10265 posts

It's about an hour each way between Edinburgh and Glasgow by train. But how much will you save on hotels after paying for the train?

Have you checked Premiere Inns in Glasgow? There are numerous ones and they are very economical.

Posted by
20 posts

Normally hotels in Glasgow are cheaper, unless there is a major event in Glasgow. If in Edinburgh you could focus on hotels around Haymarket station, which will cheaper than those around Waverley station. Stirling is a bit nearer to Glasgow than Edinburgh and has a castle. Glasgow has an extensive rail network https://www.nationalrail.co.uk/Glasgow%20v6.pdf
Some of the coastal towns on the West should have bargain hotel rates once the Summer ends.

Posted by
5035 posts

It’s going to take in excess of 1.5 hours each way door to door from Edinburgh to Glasgow by train and assuming you will have to travel peak period, it will cost £29 per day in rail fares.

What is your budget per night in £? Glasgow is a huge city with accommodation in all price brackets. Accommodation prices in the U.K. have increased since the Covid crisis and Brexit.

When are you travelling? Scotland’s Covid restrictions are not being relaxed as much as those for England in October.

Posted by
2521 posts

If somehow you do not find anything in Glasgow, Stirling could also be an option, besides Edinburgh.

Posted by
608 posts

UN Conference in early November. I guess the town is already booked up.

Posted by
20 posts

Plenty of hotels available if you go on booking.com and search for Haymarket. Also, some bargains in Irvine (bottom left of map of Glasgow rail lines map)

Posted by
19427 posts

Ouch. I see what you mean. I'm stunned at those prices. The Premier Inn website (premierinn.com) shows a few rooms available--I think all outside the center--in the $400 (US) range.

While staying in Glasgow I day-tripped to Helensburgh to see an important Charles Rennie Mackintosh building. It's an attractive town that's about 45 minutes from Glasgow by train. Whether that works out to be better than staying in Edinburgh would depend partly on where you were staying and where your meetings take place; there are two train stations in Helensburgh and two in Glasgow). Booking.com shows a little bit of availability in Helensburgh at sane prices.

Posted by
5576 posts

If you want to check out towns along the rail line you can use this map from Scot Rail. You could check to see if the town is in Undiscovered Scotland to see how interesting it is. For example, here is Bathgate and Falkirk. BUT be sure to check the train times. Falkirk is over an hour whereas Bathgate if 50 minutes. BUT again watch the times. Just like any commuting line when you are outside of rush hour the length of time can double. Was frustrated by that growing up in an outer suburb of Chicago where the trip to the city could be close to two hours or less than an hour.

Posted by
251 posts

Having looked at the price of accommodation in Glasgow for those dates -OUCH!! And many are already fully booked too.

Have you tried looking the other side of Glasgow? Paisley, Greenock, Dumbarton or Alexandria areas? They all have good train connections to Glasgow and may be cheaper than day tickets from Edinburgh.

Posted by
5576 posts

Wasley, that's what I was trying to get to with the Train Route map. :)

Posted by
1484 posts

Here's a map of the Glasgow Underground.
https://peoplemakeglasgow.com/visiting/getting-around

You could find an apartment or B and B near one of these stations perhaps.
You'd need to do some research to find an area that is a safe residential area to stay in.
I'm sorry, I don't know Glasgow at all, only Edinburgh, as I lived there for many years.
I do hope you have time to visit Edinburgh for a couple of days as well!

I found this article, but not sure how old it is.

https://thenomadvisor.com/where-to-stay-in-glasgow/

Any Glasgow dwellers here, to give more accurate information?

Posted by
1300 posts

If the events are at the SECC as I think they are you are best looking at places on the Argyll line (Motherwell/Larkhall to Dalmuir/Helensburgh/Milngavie) or somewhere that connects via Glasgow Central, so the Inverclyde lines out to Greenock, Weymms Bay, Lairgs, Ardrossan, or Ayr. One remember that 'it is only x miles/y km from place' is the Clyde tends to get in the way west of Glasgow. Argyll and Bute, West Dumbartonshire, and East Dumbartonshire are north of the Clyde, Renfrewshire, East Renfrewshire, and Inverclyde are south.

Premier Inn has most of its locations sold out for COP26, and there are places I would definitely avoid. Feel free to message me.

Helensburgh has a few places on booking.com, it is on the Glasgow commuter rail lines, though for the SECC you would need to transfer at Dalmuir.

Posted by
82 posts

To be honest Id go for Edinburgh - a vast array of hotel and dining options and only 45 minutes on the train (although the disadvantage is you need to a 5 to 10-minute walk from Queen Street station to Central station to catch the train to the SEC), but you should still do it in in about an hour and a quarter, as long as you pick up a hotel very close to Waverley or preferably Haymarket station.

An awful lot of the towns around Glasgow are not that great, somewhat post-industrial and have very little in the way of hotel accommodation anyway.

Posted by
1484 posts

Yes, if you opt to stay in Edinburgh and commute, pick a hotel within short walking distance of Haymarket Railway Station, not Waverley Station.
The Glasgow train goes from W. to H., then on to Glasgow, so you'd shave off a few minutes, plus it's only about 12 minutes walking to the Castle in the other direction for some sightseeing.
Plenty hotels in that area.

Posted by
528 posts

I have stayed several times in the Z hotel in central Glasgow. It appears to have availability for 6th Nov for 2 or 3 nights at less than £80 per night. It is basic but gets good reviews. I would recommend it. Rooms are small but very clean.

Best wishes
Jacqui (Skyegirl)

Posted by
19427 posts

The hotel shows as fully booked for me. Skyegirl, what web site are you using? That would be a fabulous find.

Posted by
608 posts

Yes it would be! Looks like a few hotels are canceling. I think it’s a bit more complicated to travel to and from the UK.

Posted by
19427 posts

I was going to suggest that you grab something vaguely acceptable now and then check very frequently to see whether something better/cheaper pops up between now and your day of departure. Check not only booking.com but some hotel-chain websites, since not all the latters' rooms will be made available on booking.com. If people do start canceling, it's hard to predict where those newly-available rooms will be offered.

Posted by
528 posts

Hi again. The Z hotel is now showing as fully booked! I was looking on their own website. I can't find anything else in the city that I would personally recommend. Have you looked at Helensburgh? It's a pleasant town on the Clyde west of Glasgow. There is availability at the Riva Boutique Hotel on booking.com Riva and it doesn't seem overpriced. I have not stayed there but the reviews on that site and also on TA are decent. Trains to Glasgow take about 40 minutes, run fairly frequently and the station is near the hotel.

Best wishes
Jacqui (Skyegirl)

Posted by
26384 posts

are you there for COP26 or do you just have the bad luck of being there the same time?

Posted by
608 posts

It’s for one of my daughters who is part of a US youth contingency invited to COP26. Found a place that had a cancellation! :)

Posted by
26384 posts

oh gosh! what an honour!!

I don't remember if you said up thread, are they flying to the UK? I ask because I think of Greta Thunberg going to climate conferences by sailboat. I guess it is a bit late in the year for good weather in the Atlantic...

Congratulations on finding that cancellation!!!!

Posted by
608 posts

My daughter is a student at UCLA and actually studying in Florence this semester as as senior. Flying to London then taking the train to Edinburgh for a night then onto Glasgow 😊