Airports in London & How to Get to the City Center
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Here are the Airports in London
How to Get from those Airports to the City Center
In another previous post about “Free Things to Do in London“, we mentioned that London is one of the most visited cities in the world. Perhaps, one of the reasons is, thanks to the 6 airports that the city has, they make London very accessible from any part of the world.
So, here are some useful info about the airports in London that you can choose what’s connects from your origin location and the modes of transportation to go from any of the airports to the city center.
It’s the biggest of all airports in London, and one of the most known worldwide since it is one of the airports with the most air traffic in Europe.
Heathrow (LHR) was located 20-miles southwest of London. It has 5 terminals and has all the services and amenities of a big airport with long-haul flights.
All 5 terminals are connected via Heathrow Express railway which is provided for FREE to all passengers travelling between terminals. The last time we were there, the attendant handed out pass-cards to walk through the barriers to the trains at no charge.
Website: Heathrow Airport
How to Get from Heathrow to London:
Subway: This airport is the only one that connects directly with the London Underground. It has stations in Terminals 1-2-3 / Terminal 4 and Terminal 5 in the Picadilly line (dark blue). It’s the cheapest way but it takes about 45 minutes to get to the center.
Train: The fastest way is to take the train Heathrow Express. The train takes about 15 minutes and goes directly to Paddington station.
Another option is the TfL Rail train (TfL – Transit For London). This makes the same route of the Express but it takes about 30 minutes because it stops at all the stations prior to Paddington. But, it is much cheaper than the Express.
To check all of your options and updated ticket prices: CLICK HERE
This Airport is the second most important airport in London and known as the airport where many charter and low cost companies operate.
Gatwick (LGW) was located about 28-miles south of London. It has 2 terminals: North and South. Both terminals are connected by train.
The main terminal is the South. This is where the train station is located to go to the city. If you arrive at North Terminal you will have to take the train that connects both terminals to go to the main train station to go to London.
Website: Gatwick Airport
How to Get from Gatwick to London:
Train: This airport has also very good connection to go to London even when it doesn’t have a metro. The best way to go is with the train Gatwick Express, which takes about 30 minutes to get to Victoria Station. The train runs every 15 minutes from 5.00 am. until 23.45 pm.
Another option is by the Southern Railway and First Capital Connect. These arrive at Victoria, London Bridge and City Thameslink.
Bus: Most of the buses operate from the South terminal. You can find different companies such as National Express, MegaBus or EasyBus. The cheapest way is to use the Easyjet minibuses (Easy-Bus). The bus is the cheapest option but it takes almost an hour and a half to get to Victoria. If you have time and want to save money, it’s the best option 🙂
Stansted (STN) is the third busiest airport in London and the United Kingdom. Here operate many of the low cost companies of the country.
The airport has a single terminal and is located 40-miles northeast of London. It’s one of those with the best connections to get to the city but it’s also the one that is the furthest away. Some journeys can take one hour and a half depending on the traffic of the moment.
Website: Stansted Airport
How to Get from Stansted to London:
Train: The Stansted Express train runs from the airport to Liverpool Street station. This takes about 45 minutes and makes one stop at Tottenham Hale. As in the previous ones it’s the fastest option.
Bus: Ditto for one of the cheapest options. You can use companies such as National Express or Shuttlebus and get to Liverpool Street Station in about 1 hour, or to Victoria station in about 75 minutes.
This Airport is the fourth biggest airport after the three mentioned above. Luton also operate low-cost airline companies such as EasyJet and Ryanair.
Luton (LTN) has a single terminal. It’s located in the east of the city of Luton and 35 miles northwest of central London.
Website: Luton Airport
How to Get from Luton to London:
Bus: It’s the best way to get to London because this airport doesn’t have train station. You can use companies like National Express or Shuttlebus. It takes between 1 hour and an hour and a half to get to Victoria Station, depending on the route and bus stops.
Train: You also have the option of going by train. But you have to take a bus to the St Pancras station and here take the train to the city.
This airport was a established a few decades ago and was the third busiest airport in London. But now only a few low cost companies operate that connect mainly with European capitals.
Southend (SEN) has a refurbished terminal after Stobart Group purchased the airport in 2008. It’s located 40-miles northeast of London.
Website: Southend Airport
How to Get from Southend to London:
Train: The airport has its own train station. The station is located in front of the passenger terminal. The train runs from the airport to Liverpool Street in less than one hour. Trains operate from 4.00 am. until 11.30 pm.
Bus: Three lines pass through the airport, but none of them go to London. So taking a bus-ride is not a good option.
LONDON CITY AIRPORT
London City Airport is the closest to central London and is the fifth busiest in the city. Although most flights are for business people. But it’s good to know about this airport 😉
The London City Airport (LCY) has a single terminal and is located 6-miles east of central London.
Website: London City Airport
How to Get from City Airport to London:
Train: Arriving in London from this airport is quite fast because of its proximity. You can use the DLR station (Docklands Light Railway) from which trains leave the station every 8 and 15 minutes.
Bus: the buses nº 473 & 474 pass through this airport.
And of course, also at all airports there are Uber, Transfer or Taxis services. We never use these services because prices are usually exorbitant for people on a skinny budget 😉
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