Getting from London Airports to Central London - How to do it!

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Hi! Welcome to Complete City Guides!

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My name is Patrick, I'm originally from Sydney (Australia) but grew up in England (my second home) - and I love exploring cities (and writing about it!)

I work online in marketing, which gives me the opportunity to travel around the world full time.

So while I am away, I keep this blog updated with full travel info. I tend to stay in a city for a few months at a time, to really get to know it - then I write guides on it.

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How to get from London Airports to the city center of London - your options and how much it costs with 2018 prices

Getting from a London Airport to Central London

There are several London airports, but you will probably land at Stansted Airport (30 miles north of London, has many Ryanair and Easyjet flights from Europe), Gatwick airport (2nd busiest in UK, 30 miles/48km from London) or Heathrow (UK's busiest airport, 14 miles/23 km from London).

As you can see, none of those airports are particularly close to the city center. However they are have great links to London via coaches (cheaper, slower) and trains (more expensive, but often faster) and in the case of Heathrow there is an underground tube link.

Tip: If you are buying a train ticket and are coming back to the airport to catch your return flight (within one calendar month) then you should ask for a "open return". In UK the cost of a return ticket is only slightly more than a one way ticket, and an 'open return' is only slightly more expensive than a normal (same day) open return. Also, if you arrive early in the morning then you might be there for peak time. Tickets are ridiculsly expensive at peak time, so if you want to save some money ask for an offpeak ticket - you might have to wait an hour or two for peak time to end, but you can save a lot. See details about ticket types on TheTrainLine. You can also check ticket prices (and the route/connections) at The Train Line.

Here is a quick summary of how to get from the various London airports to central London, and how much the single/return prices are. Please double check the information though, as prices, routes and timetables change! Last updated: Jan 2018.

Prices are for one person, travelling by themselves, at off peak times. When buying a ticket I recommend you ask for an open return, if you are coming back to the airport.

Don't care about how you get to London from the airports? Scroll down to get to the 1 day London Itinerary

From London Stansted Airport to London City Center:

London airport - standed airport
  • To drive/taxi from Stansted to London: over 1:15hr - do not do this! I do not recommend you get a taxi as it'll be very expensive
  • Train from Stansted Airport to London: Cost: £17 (or return within a month for £29). Stansted Express, leaves every 15 minutes and takes 47 minutes to get to London. Show details
  • Coach/bus from Stansted to London from £5, see details here
  • More details

From London Gatwick Airport to London City Center

  • Driving/Taxi it is around 1 hour+ driving time. A taxi would be very expensive. Don't get a taxi.
  • Train 30 minutes, £17+. Gatwick Express is fast, but a bit expensive (£17+ for Off peak, single from Gatwick Airport to London Victoria train station, booked in advance online). Show details
  • By coach/bus -1hr 35minutes, from £10+ (book online in advance - see here) Show details

From London Heathrow Airport to London City Center

  • By driving/taxi from Heathrow airport to London - takes approx 40-50 minutes. I wouldn't recommend getting a taxi.
  • By train from Heathrow to London - Fastest. Trains every 15 minutes, from Heathrow to Paddington station. Prices £25 for a single (£37 for return)
  • By tube/underground from Heathrow to London - Cheapest. £6 one way to central London. ~1 hour. Show details
  • By coach/bus from Heathrow to London - from £10, takes 40-60 minutes to Victoria coach station. See http://www.nationalexpress.com/
  • More details on Heathrow.com

Other airports

There are a few other airports, but they are rarely used by tourists. Also the 'London Southend Airport' really isn't anywhere near to London. But it does have good and easy links to London via the train.

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About Me

I'm an Australian who has lived in Europe for most of my life. I work online, travelling with my laptop, working online and exploring cities for months at a time.

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