International College Portsmouth

Travel to Portsmouth

Travelling during the pandemic 

If you are planning to travel to Portsmouth for the start of the semester, there is some important information you need to be aware of prior to booking your flights. 

Airport pickup

Booking an airport pickup with ICP is highly recommended. It is the quick and hassle-free way to get to Portsmouth.  ICP works with a contracted taxi company so the price is very reasonable. Please book your airport pickup.

There are also other alternative transfer options as follows:

Travelling 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).
If you favour this option you will need to:

  • Book your ticket minimum 24 hours in advance of boarding the bus
  • Make your own way to the correct coach pick up 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. 

How to book?

Please go to the National Express website at for a full list of fares, departure times, pick up points and online bookings. (Please remember to read the terms and conditions).


Travelling by train

Train services are operated by a variety of different companies. Some companies offer special deals, especially if booked in advance, on certain routes (usually longer distance routes). There are 3 train stations in Portsmouth. 

  • 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 Aquacards, 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. 

How to book?

For timetables and fares, see Please make sure 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.
Note: Please note that services are currently disrupted due to strike actions. Make sure to stay updated on any changes to train times and available routes ahead of your journey.

If you carry a lot of luggage and there is no direct train service, we recommend that you use an alternative transport such as coach or airrport pick-up. 

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' website or over the phone. 

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