Travel News

Bank holiday travel: How bad will it be on trains, planes and roads?

Simon Calder’s Travel

Over the busiest late May bank holiday weekend since 2019, some long-distance rail travellers will be obliged to make 150-mile journeys entirely by bus – even having to change coaches along the way.

Wide-ranging railway closures could persuade more people to travel by road, resulting in even greater congestion at key points on the motorway network as the post-pandemic travel surge continues.

The late May bank holiday also marks the start of a week’s half-term for most UK schools. Some airports will handle their highest number of passengers ever for a late May bank holiday, with Manchester expecting 100,000 travellers per day through the holidays.

The Port of Dover is expecting another busy bank holiday weekend and has told coach operators they must use a dedicated border processing facility for most of Friday and Saturday. Ferry travellers in Scotland will be affected by Caledonian MacBrayne’s continuing shortage of vessels.

The Independent has researched the key pinch points for travellers on all major forms of transport.


Network Rail is closing some key intercity lines for planned engineering work over the long weekend. The organisation says: “People needing to travel between Saturday 25 May and Monday 27 May could have longer journeys, fewer available seats, and may need to use rail-replacement buses.”

Passengers attempting to travel on the West Coast main line, linking Glasgow with northwest England with London, will see trains replaced by buses for the northernmost 150 miles.

Network Rail says £24m is being invested “to enable smoother and more reliable journeys for passengers and freight services”.

A key part of the work is taking place at Shap in Cumbria. Network Rail says: “A specialised ‘drain train’ will refurbish over 2.5km [1.5 miles] of drainage to reduce flooding incidents on the West Coast main line.”

The journey between Glasgow and Oxenholme in Cumbria, which normally takes around one hour 45 minutes on Avanti West Coast, will require a change of rail-replacement buses at Carlisle.

Further disruption will take place around Crewe and in the Milton Keynes area. Buses will replace trains between Shrewsbury and Crewe, affecting Transport for Wales passengers.

No services will run via Huddersfield on Saturday 25 and Sunday 26 May, extending journey times over the Pennines between Liverpool, Manchester,…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at The Independent Travel…