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Language: English | Currency: Dollars ($) | Local time: UTC | Avg. Flight time: 11.1 hrs
British Airways, United and Virgin Atlantic offer regular San Francisco flights from Heathrow (LHR).
While Norwegian operates a route between London Gatwick (LGW) and Oakland (OAK), which is a mere 25-minute drive from central San Fran.
Direct flights might be more convenient, but, if you’re travelling on a budget, think about widening your options and consider a stopover. The cheapest San Francisco flight deals often involve breaking up the journey somewhere en-route.
Swiss offers flights from Heathrow to San Francisco with a stop in Zurich, while KLM flies from Heathrow with a brief stop in Amsterdam. The speediest indirect flights take around 14 hours, although some journeys can be far longer.
Increase your chances of finding the cheapest San Francisco flight deals by factoring in flights to San Jose and Oakland airports. British Airways flies directly from Heathrow to San Jose (SJC), while American Airlines and Virgin Atlantic both offer indirect options. Oakland is just across the water from downtown San Francisco, while the transfer from San Jose takes approximately 45 minutes.
You’ll find more information on airport transfers on our how to get around San Francisco page.
Direct flights to San Francisco are available only from London airports, though there are plenty of speedy options with stopovers from regional airports.
KLM’s Birmingham to San Fran route, with a quick touch down in Amsterdam, takes around 14 hours, while the journey from Bristol (again with KLM) clocks in at 14 hours and 15 minutes.
It takes a similar time to travel from Edinburgh to San Francisco with WOW air, stopping over in Iceland.
From many other UK destinations, however, the easiest way to reach the Bay Area is to fly to London Heathrow and take advantage of the cheap San Francisco flights operating out of the capital.
With the great blue expanse of the Atlantic between us, flying really is the only practical way of reaching San Francisco from the UK.
If you’re starting out from mainland USA, however, there are plenty of other options. Tight budget? Take a look at the cheap San Francisco tickets on offer with Greyhound buses from destinations around North America. Hiring a car in the US is also cheaper and easier than almost anywhere else in the world.
Finally, if money isn’t tight and time is no object then why not consider a cruise? Cunard and P&O are both running cruises in 2018 from Southampton that take in San Francisco, with the choice of stopping off at various Canadian, South Pacific or even Australasian destinations en-route.