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Category:United Kingdom

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United Kingdom
Region: Europe
Union Jack shed
More Information:
CS Group Wikipedia
Wikitravel HitchWiki

The United Kingdom or UK is a country located in Europe, and is a political union made up of four constituent countries; England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. It has a land border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

It has a population of approximately 60 million (1), composed of 50 million in England (2), 5 million in Scotland (3), 3 million in Wales (4) and 1.7 million in Northern Ireland (5).

Couchsurfing is very strong in the UK – as of March 2008 it is 5th in the top CS countries with over 20,000 members. Around 7,000 of these are in London and there are usually over one hundred members in the larger cities. Involvement is also increasing in smaller cities and towns and public transport and road linkages make these easy to access.


UK CS in Media Reports


Region Blurb CS Wiki Pages CS Groups CSers Within 10 Miles
EastCambridgeCambridge 220
Ely 5
Essex & East Anglia
Herts Csers
Norwich 108
East MidlandsEast Midlands
Birmingham Barmy Brummies 255
Derby 29
Leicester 110
Northampton, UK 41
Nottingham Nottingham 184
LondonLondon London 7,000+
London Calling
London Living
London FAQs
North EastDurham 51
Newcastle 53
North WestBolton Bolton 29
Lancashire and Lake District
Liverpool 200
Manchester Manchester 300+
Salford 6
South EastBrighton & HoveBrighton & Hove 1500+
Kent 45
Milton Keynes 52
Oxford Oxford 231
Portsmouth 91
ReadingReading - Berkshire 85
SouthamptonSouthampton 116
Surrey CouchSurfers
South WestBathBath 300+
Bournemouth 92
BristolBristol 300+
Cheltenham 49
Exeter 95
Newquay 13
Plymouth 67
West MidlandsHereford 18
Leamington Spa 101
Staffordshire and The Black Country
Yorkshire & The HumberBradford ain't bad, Love! 48
Calderdale Calderdale, West Yorks 47
Huddersfield 41
Hull Hull 55
LeedsLeeds 218
SheffieldSheffield 199
York 96


Region Blurb CS Wiki Pages CS Groups
Central Scotland
Highlands & IslandsInverness
Edinburgh Organisers Group
Mid Scotland & FifeSt AndrewsSt Andrews
North East ScotlandAberdeen - The Granite City
South of Scotland
West of Scotland


Region Blurb CS Wiki Pages CS Groups
Mid WalesAberystwythAberystwyth
North WalesWrexham
South WalesCardiffCardiff

Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland CS Group
Belfast CS Group

CouchSurfing Zones

A CS Zone is simply an organised place for CSers to meet up and hang out - more information.

UK CS Zones:

Getting Around

The UK has an extensive road and rail network and most urban destinations are easily accessible by car, train, or bus. There are also regional airports. Check the local wiki pages (where they exist) for region/city specific travel information and tips.

By Bus

  • Megabus is an online-only booking system and so with lower overheads come lower prices. They service many cities with most journeys starting from £1. There is a 50p booking fee per transaction (not per booking). They release tickets 45 days in advance and prices increase the closer you get to the departure date.
  • National Express is the main coach provider in the UK and goes to Europe too (as Eurolines). They do some UK routes from £1 each way which isn’t as well known and so can sometimes be cheaper than the Megabus. There is also no booking fee.
  • Regional/local bus networks – the biggest providers are Stagecoachand Firstalthough there are plenty of smaller local operators.
    • Many regions such as Greater Manchester (GMPTE) and West Yorkshire (Metro) have public transport authorities that offer unified tickets and passes and assist in journey planning.

By Train

Trains can be very expensive, but they can also be as cheap (or even cheaper) then buses and they are usually faster. Start with National Railfor routes and times.

  • Booking in advance – this is particularly important for longer journeys as there are often a limited number of cheaper-priced seats. The Train Line is useful for identifying these – it is often worth looking at earlier and later trains too as cheaper tickets might be found. Note that you will not usually need to book in advance for local journeys (e.g. Hull to Beverley).
  • Where possible, buy online or at the ticket office. You can buy tickets when you are on the train itself, but they cannot always sell you the cheapest fares.
  • Crossing county boundaries often increases the price of a ticket.
  • Play around with your journeys. For example, if you were travelling from Oxford to Cardiff, change in Swindon since it is cheaper to book single tickets between Oxford and Swindon and then Swindon and Cardiff then it is to book direct!
  • There are singles (one way only), day returns (going there and coming back in the same day), and open returns (going there on a specific day and coming back within a month of that day).
    • Check all of the prices to see which will work out best for you. Sometimes two singles can be cheaper, sometimes not – it will often vary by route so check each time.
  • Travellers under 26 can buy a Young Persons Railcard for £24. This gives a third off most journeys (so worth it if you are travelling a lot).
  • There are always regional and train company specials.
    • Keep an eye out for ranger/rover passes. These will usually offer unlimited rail (and sometimes bus as well) travel within a specific region for a day (or sometimes a week). Two adults travelling together can often save with family passes.
    • Train company specials include Northern’s Duo, where if you buy one ticket your travel companion can get theirs for half price.

Reaching Northern Ireland

You may be best to fly to Belfast. Use Skyscanner to find the cheapest flights. (Belfast City airport is the closest one and only costs £1.20 to get to rather than £6 to get to Belfast International so remember this when you are booking). Otherwise, you will need to take a ferry.

UK GLBT Travellers

The UK is a legally gay-friendly country with equality laws including civil partnerships and anti-discrimination. See Stonewall for equality information and resources.
Popular gay cities are London (especially the Soho area), Manchester (especially Canal Street). Brighton has the highest proportional gay population, and Hebden Bridge has the highest number of lesbians per capita.
See also:
Queer Couchsurfers Group
UK Gays Group
Gay travelers

Notes & References

(1) Wikipedia – United Kingdom
(2) Wikipedia - England
(3) Wikipedia - Scotland
(4) Wikipedia - Wales
(5) Wikipedia - Ireland

Media in category "United Kingdom"

This category contains only the following file.

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