Travel to Cardiff
Flying to Cardiff
Eastern Airways and Flybe operate flights to Cardiff from other UK cities. Aer Lingus flies from Dublin. Airlines flying to Cardiff from continental Europe include KLM and Air France. There are no direct flights from the USA.
From Edinburgh - 1 hour 15 minutes; New York - 9 hours 15 minutes (including stopover); Los Angeles - 15 hours (including stopover); Toronto - 9 hours 35 minutes (including stopover); Sydney - 26 hours 30 minutes (including stopover).
Travel by road
Driving regulations in Wales are the same as for the rest of the UK. Traffic drives on the left and speed limits are 113kph (70mph) on motorways and dual carriageways, 97kph (60mph) on single-lane main roads and 48kph (30mph) in built-up areas. The legal driving age is 17 years. Overseas driving licences and International Driving Permits are valid for driving in the UK for up to one year. Insurance is mandatory. Overseas motorists should bring registration documents and ask their insurance company if a Green Card is required.
Emergency breakdown services
AA (tel: 0800 887 766, in the UK); RAC (tel: 0800 828 282, in the UK).
The M4 is the main direct route to Cardiff from elsewhere in the UK via London, Reading, Swindon, Bath and Bristol, before crossing the Second Severn Crossing (M4) and continuing on to Swansea. From the north and Midlands, the M5 passes through Birmingham to link with the M4 near Bristol. The Severn Suspension Bridge (M48) provides an alternative route over the River Severn. A toll (westbound only) is charged on both bridges. Eastbound crossings from Wales into England are free for all vehicles.
National Express (tel: +44 871 781 8181; www.nationalexpress.com) runs direct services between Cardiff and most other major UK towns and cities. Eurolines (tel: +44 871 781 8177; www.eurolines.co.uk) serves destinations on mainland Europe.
Cardiff Central Bus Station has closed for redevelopment and is not expected to reopen until 2017 or 2018. In the meantime, coaches stop at Sophia Gardens.
Time to city
From Swansea - 50 minutes; Birmingham - 2 hours; London - 2 hours 30 minutes; Bristol - 50 minutes.
Travel by Rail
The rail service in Wales is modern and largely reliable with Cardiff itself home to some 20 stations. Cardiff Central, located on Central Square, is the main railway station. Its facilities include ATMs, a newsagent and bookseller, food outlets and vending machines.
The main railway companies for long distance cross-country services to and from Cardiff are First Great Western (tel: +44 345 700 0125; www.firstgreatwestern.co.uk) and Virgin Trains (tel: +44 871 977 4222; www.virgintrains.co.uk).
Express services are fast and comfortable, although the further west they go, the more frequently they stop. Arriva Trains Wales (tel: +44 3333 211 202; www.arrivatrainswales.co.uk) operates local and regional routes.
National Rail Enquiries (tel: +44 3457 484 950; www.nationalrail.co.uk) provides information on fares and timetables.