How to get around Oxford

A lone car passes Trinity College in the snow

By Adrian Mourby, your Oxford expert

I write for Classic FM, Evening .... Read more

Getting around Oxford - my advice

Getting around by taxi

Oxford is a small city, particularly if you're only interested in its tourist areas north of the river. Personally I think it's all walkable but if you need taxis here are the main companies:

001 Taxis - +44 1865 240000
ABC Taxis - +44 1865 770077
Radio Taxis - +44 1865 242424
Royal Cars - +44 1865 777333
City Taxis - +44 1865 201201

Minimum fares tend to go up after 10pm. You will also be charged extra for a lot of luggage but the driver should mention this before setting off. As an example, I was recently charged an extra £5 on top of the fare because my wife and I had arrived back from Heathrow with six bags. Taxi fares vary hugely depending on traffic queues as waiting time is also charged on the meter. The same journey across town might cost £8 or £12 depending on congestion. 

Getting around by bicycle

Oxford is also a very flat city and is best seen by bicycle. Bainton Bikes (6 Bainton Road, Oxford, OX2 7AF; 01865 514025; www.baintonbikes.com) hire out cycles and Oxford Cycles (+44 7907 952 832; www.oxford-cycles.co.uk) will deliver direct to your hotel.

Getting around by bus

The Oxford Bus Company (www.oxfordbus.co.uk) who operate buses to London and the major airports also run local buses up and down the Woodstock and Banbury Roads (the main north/south routes, north of the river) down the Headington, Cowley and Iffey Roads (south of the river) and the westerly Botley and Abingdon Roads.

The buses have City Route numbering (City2, City 5, City 35 &c) and timetables can be downloaded in pdf format from the Oxford Bus website.

The main routes are as follows:

City 2  (Kidlington-Summertown-Oxford)

CityX3, X13 &  X23 (Abingdon-Redbridge Park and Ride-Oxford City\Rail Station)

City4 (Rose Hill-Oxford-Botley-Elms Rise\Dean Court\Cumnor\Abingdon)

City5 (Blackbird Leys-Templars Square-Cowley Road-Oxford City\Rail Station)

City6 (Wolvercote-Woodstock Road-Oxford)

City8 (Barton-Headington-St Clements-Oxford)

City9 (Risinghurst-Headington-St Clements-Oxford)

City13, X13 and  X23 (John Radcliffe Hospital-Northway\Marston\Brookes University-St Clements-Oxford City\Rail Station)

city15 (Wood Farm-Morrell Avenue-St Clements-Oxford)

city35 (Abingdon-Radley-Kennington-Oxford)

cityX2 (Didcot-Abingdon-Oxford)

U1 (Wheatley-Headington-Oxford City-Harcourt Hill)

U5 (Marston-Brookes University-Cowley-Oxford City) and U5X (Wheatley-Cowley-The Plain)

Single fares start at £1. Same day return fares represent a slight saving (for instance a single fare of £1 translates into a return fare of £1.60.

Getting around by car

Do not drive around Oxford unless you really have to. You'll spend a long time finding parking and a lot of money paying for it! If you do decide to hire a car, it's worth looking at my advice on this Oxford car hire page.

For more expert advice on Oxford, follow these links: