Airport collection service

During the arrivals period in September, we provide a free airport collection service for students from Birmingham (BHX) and London Heathrow (LHR) airports.  

The airport collection service will be in operation during the main arrivals period (Friday 18, Saturday 19, Sunday 20 and Monday 21 September).  This year there will be additional transport available for those who are required to self-isolate upon arrival to the United Kingdom.  This will operate from Saturday 5 September until Thursday 17 September.  

Students who are not subject to self-isolation should plan to arrive in time for the start of Welcome Week on Monday 21 September, whilst those requiring a 14-day self-isolation period upon arrival to the UK, should plan to arrive between Saturday 5 September and Monday 7 September.   

We recommend that before you travel you refer to the UK Government Guidelines.  Some students arriving in the UK may be required to self-isolate for a period of 14 days, unless travelling from a country which is listed in Coronavirus (COVID-19) travel corridors (for England).  

Please note that places are limited on coaches due to social distance restrictions, and spaces may be booked quickly. You will need to book your airport collection in advance, and we advise you book as early as possible to guarantee your seat as places are limited. Bookings for September 2020 are now open.

If you are travelling to a different airport, you will need to make your own arrangements for travelling to campus.

Book your airport collection 

We'd encourage incoming students to arrive at Birmingham (BHX) Airport where possible. Birmingham (BHX) Airport is close to our University campus (just a 30-minute coach transfer away) and after a long journey, our students really value a short transfer. Travel time from London Heathrow (LHR) to Birmingham is approximately two hours.

The collection service will drop you to selected halls of residence on our main Edgbaston campus. If you're not staying in University accommodation, we will work with you once you've booked your collection to ensure you know how to get to the right place once you arrive.

What happens when I arrive at the Airport?

You will pass through immigration control before collecting your luggage. You need to have your immigration documents ready to be checked, as well as documents relating to your studies such as your offer letter, and finances.  You must make sure you have made all necessary arrangements regarding your visa and understand everything you must do when you arrive. Make sure you have read information for students who require visas. 

You will then be met outside arrivals at either Birmingham (BHX) or London Heathrow (LHR) Airports by our friendly meet and greet team (who will be clearly identified, wearing blue t-shirts, jumpers or coats) and brought to the University campus by coach. 

Further information detailing where to find your University meet and greet team at the Airports will be provided once you have made your booking, your confirmation will include instructions on where the airport collection will run from and any information about how to find your meet and greet team.  You may be required to wear a mask whilst travelling on the coach to the University; your meet and greet team will have masks available should you need one.   

It is important that you are ready to provide your name, student ID number, and booking details to our meet and greet team before boarding your coach. 

Please note, as a student travelling to the UK you will have to provide your journey and contact details on an online passenger locator form 48 hours before travelling to the UK.  You will need to show your completed form when you arrive at the UK border, either by printing a copy, or showing it on your phone. The UK Government will use this information to contact you if you or someone you’ve travelled with develops coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms.

Essential information

How do I make a coach collection booking?

On this page, click either Birmingham Airport or London Heathrow Airport.

Click on the date that you would like to book the Airport collection for.


Choose the time that you would like to book your collection for, allowing at least 90 minutes between your flight arrival time and the coach time to allow for luggage collection, security clearance and locating your meet and greet team.

Complete the details requested.

We will confirm airport meet and greet locations and further information closer to your arrival date. 

Do I need to self-isolate upon arrival to the UK?

We recommend that before you travel you refer to the UK Government Guidelines

Currently, students arriving in the UK are required to self-isolate for a period of 14 days unless they are travelling from a country which is listed in  Coronavirus (COVID-19) travel corridors (for England).  

It is your previous location, i.e. where you are travelling from, that is of importance when considering if you are required to self-isolate. The rules are not always the same for each country so please ensure you check the list and follow the guidance provided.  

How will I find the airport collection?

When you book your airport collection, your confirmation will include instructions on where the airport collection will run from. Our meet and greet team will help you find the coach. They will be wearing blue t-shirts, jumpers or coats. You should be ready to give them your name, student ID number, and booking details.

As information is subject to change, we will add further detail on how to find your airport collection closer to arrival dates.  Information will also be included once you confirm your booking.

What can I bring with me on the airport collection coach?

There is limited space available on the airport collection coaches. Most students are able to travel with 1 suitcase and a cabin-sized case or a small rucksack or a handbag. If it is essential to bring more luggage than this, it will only be permitted if you can carry this without assistance as no assistance for carrying bags can be given. If you are unable to carry your baggage without assistance you will not be able to bring this onto the coach.

If you have more luggage than you are able to carry without assistance, you will need to arrange for your extra belongings to be shipped to campus.

Again, please note that assistance will not be provided with lifting/carrying your luggage between airports and on to coaches or transferring from coaches to your accommodation.  Any luggage that you bring with you will be your responsibility to move.

Can I bring friends or family with me on the airport collection coach?

Unfortunately, we cannot take friends and family on the airport collection coaches. Only University of Birmingham students who have booked a ticket for the coach will be able to travel with us. If you are under 18 and wish to travel with a parent/guardian, please contact the International Student Team (IST).

How long does the airport collection take?

The journey time from Birmingham Airport (BHX) is approximately 30 minutes.

The journey time from London Heathrow Airport (LHR) is approximately 2.5 hours.