Edinburgh enjoys a pedestrian- and cyclist-friendly infrastructure and offers good traffic links.

Basics overview - transport

On foot

Edinburgh is a compact city and is easy to get around on foot. Remember that the city is built on several hills, so expect a few gradients.

Most of our hills are easily tackled by anyone of average fitness, however, and the views on offer are worth the effort!

By bike

Edinburgh is a great place to see by bike.

Cyclists share bus lanes in and around the city centre during peak times, but there are also traffic-free cycle paths across the city.

If you want to buy a bike, you can find a shop from our list of secondhand bike stores. Some bike shops in Edinburgh offer discounts to University staff and students.

Public transport

Edinburgh and its surrounding suburbs are well served by two local bus companies, railway lines, and a tram service.

More information on public transport information is available from Traveline Scotland.

By bus

Lothian Buses run frequent services throughout the city.

It offers a day ticket with unlimited travel in and around Edinburgh as well as weekly, monthly and yearly bus passes with discounted rates for students.

Contactless payments are accepted on all routes, however if you are paying in cash, you will need to present the exact change - except the Airlink service (from the airport).

City bus tours

A great way to take in the sights of the city is on one of the many Edinburgh bus tours.

Tickets can be purchased at the Edinburgh Bus Tours Hub on Waverley Bridge, where the tours start and end.

By tram

Edinburgh Trams operate a route that stretches from the airport to the city centre.

By train

Edinburgh has three main train stations: Waverley, Haymarket and Edinburgh Park.

The city's other train stations include Edinburgh Gateway, South Gyle, Slateford, Kingsknowe, Wester Hailes, Brunstane, Newcraighall, and Shawfair.

You can get timetables and book tickets from National Rail or ScotRail.

National Rail Enquiries


By taxi

Taxis can be pre-booked, found in taxi ranks at all major transport hubs, or flagged down on the street.

Central Taxis

City Cabs

By car

Driving in the UK is on the left-hand side of the road.

A guide to driving in the UK is available from the Council for International Student Affairs.


Parking restrictions apply across most of the city centre. Parking ticket machines provide short-term on-street parking, while car parks offer hourly or daily rates.

Useful information on all aspects of parking and driving in the city is available from the Edinburgh City Council website.

City of Edinburgh Council: roads, travel and parking information

If you are visiting the University by car, please be aware that parking is limited at some of our campuses.

Parking on campus

Car hire

To hire a car you need a full, valid licence issued in your country of residence and held for at least a year (some hire companies require 2 years).

If your licence is not issued by an EC country, an International Driver's Permit may be required.

The average minimum car hire age is 23 (21 with some companies), and the average maximum age is 70 (80 with some companies).