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Megabus or National Express?

New York City, New...
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Megabus or National Express?

I'm coming to Liverpool in September, and I couldn't be more thrilled! For the first part of my journey, I will be in London, so I need to get from London to Liverpool. I have booked tickets to see the Lennon and McCartney homes with the National Trust, and it said very plainly on their website that they do not wait for late participants for the tour. So I really must be there on time!

My question - is it better to take Megabus from London to Liverpool or National Express rail? I saw online tickets for 10 GBP on Megabus, and online specials on National Rail for 14 GBP from London to Liverpool. Since it's not too much difference, price-wise, I just want to use whichever will be easier for a foreigner and most reliable.

Also, I'm an American, and I'm not totally sure yet if the Megabus website will let me use it as a non-UK customer -- if anyone knows for sure, please feel free to chime in!

Thanks!

wirral
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1. Re: Megabus or National Express?

You will be made very welcome in Liverpool. We look forward to receiving visitors.As Capital City of Culture 2008 there is lots going on for tourists and they are here in numbers. At the prices you quote the train would be much better as it takes approx 3 hrs whereas the coach is over 5. And the trains on that route really are very comfortable.Make sure you book your travel tickets early because that is a bargain price and booking nearer to the date of travel would cost you many times more.

There are lots of Beatles-related excursions available as you may be aware.

Liverpool, United...
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2. Re: Megabus or National Express?

Hi Beatlefan_1

I recently used Megabus to travel from London to Liverpool and the journey was quite unpleasant. The heating on the bus was stuck on full on an already warm day and the bus wasn't fitted with seat-back tables. I've travelled with National Express in the past and found them better than Megabus, you can often get £5 fares with National Express even at weekends.

If you need any further advice, don't hesitate to ask.

Liverpool, United...
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3. Re: Megabus or National Express?

Sorry, just re-read your question.

National Express rail don't travel directly to Liverpool, this route is served by Virgin Trains. My previous answer was based on National Express coaches.

If coming to Liverpool by train, you need to be aware of a lot of track work taking place most weekends which may add significant time to your journey.

For more details, take a look at virgintrains.com/changeforgood/default.aspx

UK
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4. Re: Megabus or National Express?

What day of the week are you travelling and what time is your tour booked for?

Trains from London Euston to Liverpool take approx 2.45 - 3.00 hours on week days, but can take hours longer at the weekend, when "maintenance" is being undertaken.

New York City, New...
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5. Re: Megabus or National Express?

Thanks everyone, I'm trying to get to Liverpool on a Saturday morning, arriving in Liverpool by 9:30 am. I just checked the prices again, and it seems it all went up on me - National Express trains are now 64 GBP! The MegaBus site was running really slow last night, so I'm not sure what the most recent prices are for that. The other big problem I'm having now is that I just checked Virgin Bus and National Express coaches and although they each have fares for 5 GBP, they get into Liverpool after my Lennon-McCartney house tour have already started! :(

New York City, New...
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6. Re: Megabus or National Express?

Ok, new question: I found a train from Euston to Liverpool that leaves at 10 o'clock at night, but gets me to Liverpool at 5.30 am. The main problem I am having is that so many hotels are sold out in Liverpool for the time I am trying to go, and I am rather wary of hostels. So, my question is - what is there to do in Liverpool at 5.30 in the morning?!

wirral
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7. Re: Megabus or National Express?

To be in Liverpool city centre for 9.30am you will have to travel up from London the previous evening and stay over. First Virgin Rail morning train doesn't arrive in time.

If you can't do it you are going to have to forgo your National Trust minibus tour of John and Paul's homes and book the Magical Mystery Tour (which only shows you the outside amongst many other Beatles historical sites).

Cotswolds
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8. Re: Megabus or National Express?

The train from Euston at 10pm getting in at 530 next morning is NOT one train - you are going to have to change at least once somewhere en route (which will be a godforsaken hole at that time whatever it's like in the day) and spend 3-4 hours there with no facilities open. You may even be asked to leave the station. Avoid at all costs.

New York City, New...
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9. Re: Megabus or National Express?

Thanks for the replies, I am thinking more and more about paying up the expensive train costs to leave London early and get to Liverpool on time. I am also thinking about getting a hotel room in Liverpool if possible. As a last resort, I will call the National Trust and see if they can switch my reservations from the morning tour to the afternoon tour of the Lennon and McCartney homes.

GOOD TO KNOW about the possibility of having no facilities and getting kicked out of train stations at ungodly hours! I definitely want to avoid that!

wirral
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10. Re: Megabus or National Express?

We can find you a hotel room for the Friday night as locals know the places off the tourist run.You can get a decent room for £60 per night if you book somewhere just on the fringe of the city.There would be a restaurant of sorts adjacent for evening meal and breakfast and on a bus route for getting into city centre for your minibus tour.9.30 is an early start. Many scousers are just going to bed at that time on a Saturday morning. I am thinking Innkeepers Lodge Liverpool South, Aigburth Road.Yes you can change your Beatles Homes tour times.Try and fit in the Magical Mystery Tour if you can.Are you aware Liverpool is 190 miles away from London?