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Getting There & Around – British Grand Prix

Filed in British F1 Travel Guide by on 21 Comments

Advice on the best ways to get to Silverstone for the British Formula 1 Grand Prix. The next race is on July 14-16, 2017.

If you are flying into the UK, there is a good choice of airports which are relatively close to Silverstone, including London’s five main airports: Heathrow (LHR), Gatwick (LGW), City (LCY), Stansted (STN) and Luton (LTN). The closest of the five airports to Silverstone is Luton, but it’s still approximately 50 miles (80km) away. Birmingham Airport (BHX) is a similar distance from the circuit. The latter two airports are worth considering flying into if you are planning on staying near the circuit; Luton in particularly has a good selection of discount carrier flights from different European destinations. By the same token, Silverstone is also only a train ride away from London, and there are also dedicated coach services running from the capital to the circuit on Grand Prix weekend, so it’s worth considering staying in London and making the most of the city by night.

Flights to the UK

  • From Europe: there’s no shortage of flights from Europe to the UK with both flag carriers and discount airlines. Check Ryanair & EasyJet for the best deals from as little as €100 return.
  • From the USA: most direct flights from the USA arrive at London Heathrow airport (LHR), though a handful fly into Gatwick (LGW). The flight time is from 8-11 hours. Expect to pay at least $800-1200 USD return.
  • From Australia: expect a travel time of at least 24 hours to fly from Australia to the UK, with at least one stop along the way. Qantas now transits in Dubai whilst other carriers transit in large Asian hubs such as Singapore or Hong Kong. Flights from Australia to the UK are expensive at this time of year ($2000-2500 AUD return)

Eurostar

Western European visitors can also make use of the quick and affordable Eurostar train service from Paris and Lyon. The direct service via the Channel Tunnel takes just 2.5 hours from Paris Gare du Nord to Kings Cross St Pancras in central London. Return tickets on Grand Prix weekend from €89. For reservations, visit the Eurostar website.

Ferry

Putting your car on the ferry and driving to Silverstone is also an option, particularly if you are camping near the track. Dover is also well-connected with London train stations, and Silverstone can be reached within a few hours of docking. A return ticket on the Calais-Dover ferry for two passengers with a car costs from €160 with  P&O Ferries.

Getting to Silverstone by train

If you opt to stay in London, it’s a good idea to stay close to Euston Station, which has fast connections to Milton Keynes and Northampton – the closest large stations to the circuit. Trains to Northampton are normally direct and take around one hour; return tickets from £15 if booked in advance. Trains to Milton Keynes Central can take as little as 30 minutes and cost about the same when booked in advance. Trains to Banbury are also worth considering; you will get a little closer to the circuit, but trains take longer (90 minutes from Euston). To check times, fares and book your tickets, visit National Rail.

Stagecoach runs regular buses on British Grand Prix weekend from the train stations in Northampton and Milton Keynes to Silverstone. Single day return tickets cost £16-20, 3-day tickets are £32-35. Megabus runs a service from Banbury train station. Taxis are also readily available to take you from the train station to the circuit – you shouldn’t pay more than £35 GBP for a one-way trip between from Silverstone and Banbury, Northampton or Milton Keynes train stations. Stick to licenced vehicles and steer clear of private minicabs if possible.

Buses to Silverstone

Zeelo run direct coaches to Silverstone from 4 major locations across the UK. With no stops or changes on route, it’s the quickest and most convenient way to get to Silverstone for race day. Zeelo coaches are executive standard, with WiFi, Leather seats, aircon and toilets all on board. The services aim to get into Silverstone at 10am, and return at 4.30pm, perfect timings to soak up the atmosphere and enjoy the race. Click here to purchase.

  • London to Silverstone – £32 return (Concessions £30)
  • Bristol to Silverstone – £35 return (Concessions £33)
  • Leeds to Silverstone – £33 return (Concessions £31)
  • Birmingham to Silverstone – £28 (Concessions £26)

Megabus also runs a popular service transporting F1 fans to Silverstone from fifty locations all over the UK on race weekend. All buses are scheduled to arrive at Silverstone no later than 10am each day and depart the circuit around 4.30pm. From more popular locations, the buses run each day of the event (from further afield, only on the weekend or race day). Click here to search for routes and to book online.

Driving to Silverstone

Silverstone sits between the M1 and the M40 motorways, both of which head out of London and connect with Oxford and Birmingham (M40 – near junction 10) and Milton Keynes and Northampton (M1 – junction 15a). Access to the track is from the Dadford Road which runs north from Buckingham and south from the A43 and Silverstone village. The journey should take 90 minutes from London, 60 minutes from Birmingham, 45 minutes from Oxford and 30 minutes from Northampton. Traffic on Grand Prix weekend can add to these journey times significantly, however.

> Trackside Parking: The organizers have improved trackside parking with new layouts and better drainage after heavy rains in 2011 caused havoc. For fans sitting in the grandstands on the western side of the circuit such as Luffield or Abbey, the official trackside carpark is your best bet. If you are in one of the grandstands on the eastern side of the circuit, such as Copse or Becketts, then the closest parking is at Whittlebury Park.  Try to arrive early (particularly on the weekend) to avoid the inevitable queues down the winding country lanes. Parking tickets cost £65 for 3 days (£15 for Friday / £25 for Saturday / £50 for Sunday) and can be purchased together with your tickets. All parking tickets MUST be pre-booked (e.g. when buying your race tickets). You won’t get into the circuit if you haven’t already bought a a parking ticket, and could pay a fine. (Motorbike parking is provided free of charge.) Buy Silverstone parking tickets from Gootickets.

> Park and Ride: If you want to avoid the traffic jams coming into and out of the circuit (particularly on race day) and save yourself some money on the high cost of trackside parking, then Park & Ride is worth considering. The two locations are not determined yet for 2017, but will be next to the M1 and M40 (previous locations were Hedges Airfield and Sixfields Stadium respectively). Three-day park and ride tickets cost £25, less than half the price of trackside parking (and without the traffic!) Single-day tickets are £15. Regular free shuttle buses take fans to the circuit and back each day.

What is your advice on the best way to get to Silverstone? Leave a comment below!

July 8, 2017

Trackside at Silverstone – 2017 British Grand Prix

Our guide to getting the most out of your trackside experience at Silverstone for the British Formula 1 Grand Prix.

July 4, 2017

Off-Track Activities – 2017 British Grand Prix

We highlight some of the events which coincide with the British F1 Grand Prix this year, as well as attractions close to Silverstone and the best places to eat and drink near the track.

June 27, 2017

Race Facts – British Grand Prix at Silverstone

Otherwise known as the “home of British motorsport,” Silverstone is in Northamptonshire, around 70 miles North West of London.

May 14, 2017

Travel Basics – British Grand Prix

Useful travel information to help you plan your trip to the UK for the British Formula 1 Grand Prix at Silverstone.

March 31, 2017

Budget Planner – 2017 British Grand Prix

Planning a trip to Silverstone for the British Grand Prix? Read our budget planner to help plan the cost of your weekend.

December 25, 2016

Getting There & Around – British Grand Prix

Advice on the best ways to get to Silverstone for the British Formula 1 Grand Prix.

December 8, 2016

Tickets – 2017 British Grand Prix at Silverstone

Your guide on buying tickets and the best places to watch the action at Silverstone for the 2017 British Formula 1 Grand Prix on July 14-16.

November 15, 2016

Accommodation – 2017 British Grand Prix

From trackside camping to five-star luxury hotels, we’ve chosen the best places to stay near Silverstone for this year’s British F1 Grand Prix.

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About the Author ()

Andrew Balfour is the Founder and Editor of F1Destinations.com. He originally hails from Adelaide, where he went to his first F1 race way back in 1987. He's been resident in Europe for almost 15 years and travels regularly to F1 races around the world.

Comments (21)

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  1. Bill Ryan says:

    Andrew – this is very helpful. We are planning on attending the Moto GP race in August staying in Northampton and this gives us some options.

  2. Colin Hill says:

    Andrew: couple of queries-
    1. I will be attending on Sunday. Are there queues at the park and ride?
    2. How long does the park and ride bus take both ways?
    3. Are you allowed to take cameras/lenses into the circuit?

    Many thanks in advance.

    • Editor says:

      Hi Colin, I’m sorry, I don’t have specific answers to your first two questions. But I would think there is likely to be queues for the park and ride on race day. You shouldn’t have any problems taking your camera and lenses into the circuit, but don’t take too big a lens; anything under 300m should be ok

  3. Sidney Sedgewick says:

    If I am travelling from Northamptonshire by car it says the journey is 30 minutes but leave significantly more, How much more should I realistically allow? How bad is the congestion?

    • Editor says:

      It will be worst on Sunday, so I suggest leaving at least 90 minutes for the trip there and home. Go earlier and stay later seems to work the best!

  4. Jane says:

    Hi how long will it take on the Saturday to get from the six fields park and ride? Also are their any toilet facilities at the park and ride area
    Thanks

  5. Jacqueline lamb says:

    Do u know how much the shuttle bus is from Milton Keynes to Silverstone

    • Editor says:

      Hi Jacqueline, single day tickets cost £13 one way or £21 return for adults (£10 one way or £16 return for children). Three-day tickets cost £36 for adults and £27 for children. Click here to download the timetable.

  6. Malcolm Turner says:

    Is there one entrance/gate or others that get you into the circuit?
    Will be walking from a school car park and wanted to get to beckkets, is there a gate close to or just a main walk in entrance on Saturday

  7. Heather says:

    We are staying at Henley-in-Arden and our partners are attending the race on Sunday. I have been tasked with dropping them off and picking them up after the race!!! Any ideas on the best place to drop them? I don’t know the area at all. Thanks

    • Editor says:

      Hi Heather, I don’t recommend driving your partners to the circuit and picking them up on race day. The traffic near the circuit is really congested and you will probably be stuck in traffic in each direction for an hour or two. Better idea would be to book them on a Megabus from Birmingham. You can drop them off and pick them up from there.

  8. James says:

    Is there any bus service from Stratford upon Avon?

  9. Mike says:

    We are staying in Northampton – there is the option of the N1 bus service from the bus station – is this the same a the ‘shuttle’ service??? – as the times do look a bit limited on Saturday on the timetable

  10. Steve says:

    Where are you supposed to park motorcycles? I went to the practice today and parked in one of the carparks, but I told them it was free of charge – they didn’t have a clue, and it worries me that it may not be correct when I go tomorrow and Sunday.

  11. Pauline says:

    Hi we are going to F1 tomorrow from Surrey what time would you recommend us leaving home???

    • Editor says:

      The short answer is as early as possible! The first race starts just after 8am if you want to get up really early. The traffic is bad on race day, so the earlier you get there the better. And don’t be in a hurry to leave the circuit after the race either. Enjoy!

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