Combine your pre cruise transfer from Heathrow and London to Dover, with an optional visit to one of the most impressive and dramatic Castles in the world, Dover Castle.
From just £92 per person!
Door to Door cruise transfer to Dover
Collect from any London city centre hotel/Airbnb property/selected Heathrow Airport hotels
Photo stop at the Battle of Britain Memorial, White Cliffs of Dover
Optional visit to Dover Castle
Travel by luxury coach with tour manager
After completing the hotel pick ups we head east into the county of Kent, known as the 'Garden of England', full of freshly grown produce, orchards, vineyards, market gardens and hop fields. Our scenic drive takes us to the south eastern corner of England to our destination, Dover Cruise Terminals. On arrival in Dover we make a photo stop at the Battle of Britain Memorial. Sitting on top of the famous White Cliffs of Dover, the memorial offers stunning views across the English channel to France. A peaceful place, dedicated to the heroes who fought in the skies above Kent in the Battle of Britain in World War Two. Upon the cliff tops stand replicas of the famous Spitfire and Hurricane fighter planes and the names of those small band of pilots who succeeded in the Allied victory of The Battle of Britain in 1940. *Subject to opening times*
Next stop will be at the impressive Dover Castle. A medieval castle, founded in the 12th century and widely known as the 'lock and key to England' due to its defensive significance and key role in many wars and battles!
If you choose not to enter the Castle, there will be a 10 minute photo stop, followed by a direct transfer to the nearby cruise terminal. You will arrive at your ship at approximately 11:30am - 12:00pm.
If you have upgraded to include the optional entry to Dover Castle you will have two hours to visit the Castle and grounds, then the coach will be waiting for you at the entrance to take you to the cruise terminal. You will arrive at the ship at approximately 2:00pm.
Dover Castle is the largest, and one of the oldest in England, with parts dating back to the Roman occupations, the fortress has proved critical in battles and wars spread over centuries. Perhaps the most famous feat of Dover Castle was throughout World War II, where the Castle housed an underground hospital built into the chalk cliffs and the command centre responsible for coordinating the world renowned evacuation of the beaches of Dunkirk, Operation Dynamo. The castle has outstanding views across the English Channel to France and boasts a 2,000 year old lighthouse built by the Romans!
Don't forget to reserve your entry tickets online at the time of booking, to avoid the main queues. Please be aware that the entrance to Dover Castle from the coach park does require an uphill walk which may not be suitable to passengers with walking difficulties.
Upon arrival at the port you will walk straight to the check in desk. Porters will take care of your luggage, ensuring it is delivered to your cabin. Please make sure you use the luggage label in your cruise pack to facilitate this.
Below is a list of major hotels in London and Heathrow with our collection times. If your hotel is not on the list or you are staying at an apartment or Airbnb, during the booking process you will need to add the address in the additional information box. We will then contact you after your booking to confirm the pick up time. Central London and Heathrow hotel pick ups are between 07:00am - 08:30am. We do not collect from Heathrow airport passenger terminals. Please see the FAQ's page (section 3) for details on where to meet the transfer if your flights arrives the same day.
We recommend that you are ready for collection in your specified hotel reception area, 10 minutes prior to the stated pick up time on your ticket. On departure from London we may use several smaller vehicles to pick up at hotels to ensure we complete the pickups as quickly and efficiently as possible. You may be collected by the main coach, or one of our smaller vehicles to transfer you to the coach.
On a small number of occasions, we may alter the route/timings to ensure prompt arrival at the cruise terminal. This may be down to road closures, events in London etc. If we do amend the timings we will contact you in advance. We strongly recommend checking your emails prior to your departure in case we have contacted you with a pick up time amendment.
London & Heathrow to Dover with optional Dover Castle
How far in advance should I book?
Our tour dates go on sale 12-18 months in advance. We always advise booking early to avoid disappointment as availability cannot always be guaranteed if booking is left until closer to the date of travel.
How much luggage can I bring?
Each person is allowed a maximum of 2 items of hold luggage (23kg each) and 1 item of carry on luggage (10kg each). If you have to bring more than the allocated amount, please inform us prior to travel.
Limits on luggage are worked out based on the space available in the coaches hold. If you bring extra luggage there is a possibility it will not fit in the coach. In this instance you will be responsible for arranging separate transportation for your luggage to your cruise ship, which could result in a stressful start to your holiday! And no one wants that!
Should you wish to bring any mobility aids (wheelchairs or walkers) you MUST contact us in advance to let us know. We will require full dimensions and weight. These items must be able to be folded and stored in the luggage hold. Wheelchairs must be counted as 1 item of your hold luggage.
Additional charges will be incurred should you bring additional items of luggage or for items weighing more than the maximum weight stated above.
My chosen hotel is not on your list of pick up points, can I take this service?
We collect from any London city centre hotel and Heathrow airport hotels. Occasionally we are unable to pick up or drop off at certain hotels because they are not in London city centre, Heathrow airport or not easily accessible by coach. Please email us at [email protected] and we will advise if we can collect at your hotel, or direct you to the closest pick up point.
My flight arrives at Heathrow Airport on the morning of my tour, how can I join this service?
Our collection time for Heathrow hotels is 08:00AM – 08:30AM, so if you are arriving on a flight on the morning of your tour, please make sure that you have plenty of time to get to your collection point after your flight lands, bearing in mind that it can take up to 1 hour to get through passport control and collect your luggage. We do not make pick ups from the airport terminals, our collection points are listed below.
Once you have your luggage you will need to make your way to your collection point by either taxi (the journey will take up to 10 minutes) or by using the hotel shuttle bus (the journey will take up to 20 minutes). The following website has further information about hotel shuttle buses.
The collection points are based on the Airport Terminal your flight lands at, please see below:
My flight lands at Terminal 2 or 3 – Collection Point: Radisson Red Heathrow, Bath Road, UB7 ODU
My flight lands at Terminal 4 – Collection Point: Hilton Heathrow Terminal 4, TW6 3AF
My flight lands at Terminal 5 – Collection Point: Sofitel Heathrow Terminal 5, TW6 2GD
Please contact us at [email protected] for further assistance. Could you please note at the time of booking if you arrive on the same day as your booked tour.
My flight arrives or departs from Gatwick – can you pick me up or drop me off there?
Unfortunately Gatwick is not in London and not in our collection zone. You will need to make your way in Central London for pick up. If you are arriving into Gatwick please contact us and we will advise on the best transfer options for you.
What happens if my flight is delayed and I cannot get to the meeting point on time?
As our collection time for Heathrow hotels is 08:00AM – 08:30AM, we ask that customers are ready to go at 08:00AM. When you book you will be given an emergency contact number on your E-ticket. We advise that you contact us on this number to inform us of your new arrival time so that we can best advise the options available to you. At Heathrow Airport our collections take place in a 30 minute time period. If you do contact us and are running 10-15 minutes late we would advise you to go to one of the hotels scheduled for a later pick up time. Please note our scheduled Shore Excursions and transfers are shared options and the final departure times cannot be delayed for late arrivals, however we will always assist you in making your way to the ship. As a general guide we would not recommend our shared service for anyone arriving at Heathrow less than 2 hours before the pick up time. In all cases refunds on shared transfers cannot be applied to missed transfers due to late flight arrivals or delays in luggage collection or passport control. In this situation you will need to check if it is possible to make a claim through your airline or your travel insurance. If your flight arrival timings are too near to the shared transfer departure time we would strongly recommend you book a private transfer. With private transfers the departure time can be delayed.
What time will I be collected from my hotel?
Once you have informed us of the address of the hotel or other accommodation you will be staying at, we will give you a collection time within a window of 30 minutes. We will inform you of any changes to your collection time 4 days before your tour. If you do not hear from us, then your collection time has not changed.
How will I identify the International Friends staff?
We do not wish you to get cold or wet whilst patiently waiting for us to arrive, so please remain inside the hotel lobby and your driver or guide will come into the hotel to collect you. They will know your name and will be carrying a sign with “International Friends” and the name of your tour.
How long will my journey take?
We begin collections in Central London and Heathrow hotel pick ups from 7:00AM, we aim to depart London by 8:30AM to make our way to Dover. Once all customers are safely on the coach, we will make our way to Dover Castle. The journey to Dover takes approximately 2 hours. If you have booked entry to Dover Castle, we will spend up to 2 hours visiting the Castle and then will make our way to Dover Cruise Terminal, this portion of the trip will take approximately 20 minutes. We aim to be at the Cruise Terminals by 12:00PM if you have not booked to enter Dover Castle and 2:00PM if you have booked entry to Dover Castle.
Are entries into the attractions included in my ticket price?
Entry to Dover Castle is not included in the price of your tour, you need to add Dover Castle entry to your booking if you wish to enter. We cannot guarantee availability on the day of the tour, so please book in advance. If you have already booked entry to Dover Castle with us, the guide/driver will collect your tickets from the ticket collection desk and hand them to you. If you know you want to visit Dover Castle we always advise you to add the tickets on at the time of booking your transfer. We cannot guarantee entry to attractions that have not pre-booked and paid.
Are audio guides provided at Dover Castle?
Unfortunately, audio guides are not provided at Dover Castle. However, there will be volunteers walking around Dover Castle if you wish to ask any questions.
How much walking is involved in this tour?
Your guide or driver will meet you inside the lobby of your chosen hotel and will assist you with your luggage, the vehicle will park as close as is safely and legally possible.
The walk from the coach park to Dover Castle is uphill and takes approximately 10 minutes. The grounds are mainly accessible on tarmac paths, however, there are some steep slopes which may not be suitable for passengers with walking difficulties.
Once you have arrived at the port there will be a short walk of about 100 yards from the vehicle to the terminal.
What should I wear?
British weather can be variable and so guests are advised to check the weather forecast and dress appropriately. It is recommended to bring some warm clothes with you especially in the winter months and layers are good for adapting to the ever-changing weather conditions. It is a good idea to wear appropriate footwear as there is walking involved on our tours. England is known for its rain so it is advisable to bring a waterproof jacket or umbrella with you.
How many people will be joining this tour?
This tour is a shared transfer and there will be a maximum of 36 people on your tour, plus the expert guide and the driver. We will provide a luxury, air-conditioned touring coach, with plenty of space for everyone and their luggage.
Is food and drink included in my tour?
Food and drink is not provided on this tour. You are welcome to bring a packed lunch with you. Cold food and drink can be eaten on the coach. Hot food is not permitted and all hot drinks must have a lid. All rubbish is to be taken with you.
Will I get to my ship on time?
Our Shore Excursions and Transfers are all designed for passengers going to and from the cruise ship. Our itineraries are based on the ships arrival and departure times. We would not offer an itinerary that did not allow passengers to get to their ship in time for its departure. Many ships will give allotted check in times, this is to help stagger passenger arrivals at the terminal and is more an indication of the earliest time they wish you to arrive. If you have chosen not to visit Dover Castle you can expect to arrive at the ship between 11:30am & 12:00pm. If you are visiting Dover Castle you will be at the ship by 2:00pm (ship departure time is usually at around 5:00PM). In the unlikely event of there being delays out of our control, such as traffic problems, we will liaise directly with the ships ground handling team and keep them updated on our progress and expected arrival time at the port.
Should we tip our driver or guide?
Tips are entirely at the customer’s discretion and in no way expected. Should you feel inclined to tip, your driver or guide would be grateful, but you should not feel obliged. A 10% tip is considered customary in the UK.