Heathrow Airport is London’s biggest air travel hub, and if you’re flying into London from the states, chances are that you’ll land at one of Heathrow’s five terminals. As one of the world’s busiest airports, Heathrow can be overwhelming to navigate—especially after a long international flight. Here’s everything you need to know to get from Heathrow airport to London in one piece.
How to get from Heathrow Airport to London
As many of our London Perfect apartments are based in West London, the Heathrow Express—a speedy, non-stop train that runs from Paddington Station—is one of the best ways to travel from Heathrow to London. The train can be accessed from all Heathrow terminals, and it takes as little as 15 minutes to get into London (depending on what terminal you’re leaving from). Trains leave every 15 minutes and arrive directly into Paddington Station, which is in the heart of London’s West End. Paddington has many London Underground connections (like the District, Circle and Hammersmith and City lines). If you’re traveling during rush hour, the Heathrow Express is highly recommended since you won’t have to worry about getting stuck in traffic.
Fares start at £5.50 one-way (if you book far enough in advance). The Express Saver single fare is £25 if you’re traveling during peak times or £22 if you’re traveling during off-peak times. Return fares (round-trip) are £37. You can book tickets online or via the Heathrow Express app, and you can also buy tickets at the station or aboard the train.
The London Underground
Though it takes longer (around one hour depending on where you’re going), the tube is an affordable way to get from Heathrow airport to London. You can catch the Piccadilly Line from Heathrow, and from that line, you can transfer to other lines that will take you throughout the city. Getting into Zone 1 (London city center) costs £6 if you’re paying by cash. Here are a few tips for riding on the underground.
TFL Rail / Heathrow Connect
You can take a local train into London as well. The journey time takes around 30 minutes to an hour depending on your final destination. Costs are similar to that of the London Underground and you can find more info here.
If you’re traveling during the night when the trains may not be running, a good option is to take a coach bus. (During the day, coaches get stuck in traffic, so off-peak travel is much faster.) There are several coach options that leave from Heathrow. National Express is one of the most popular for those heading from Heathrow airport to London. National Express coaches operate 24-hours a day and travel to London’s Victoria Coach Station up to 51 times a day. This is also a very affordable option, as pricing starts at £6 one-way—though you’ll have to book well in advance in order to get such a good price.
Local buses also run from Heathrow airport to London. Though they’re cheap, they’re usually very time-consuming. Check a journey planner before opting for this option. Once you’re in London, buses are a great way to get around. Find out how to ride the bus like a pro here.
If you’re not traveling during rush hour, one of the quickest ways to get into London is via car. Of course, this will be the most expensive choice, but it may be more cost-effective if you’re traveling with your family or in a large group. Hoping into London’s famous black cab may seem like a romantic introduction to the city, but it will also be a very costly introduction. You can get an idea about costs here, but it will generally be around £50-£100. Black cabs fit up to five people with luggage.
Uber operates in London and can provide a more affordable option than a black cab. You can get a fare estimate here, but do be aware of surge pricing. In general, most Uber drivers will pick you up at the short-stay car parks (they will send you very specific instructions i.e. “Terminal 5 – Level 1, Row R in Short Stay Car Park 5.”) You can also order UberXL for larger groups or UberExec if you want to travel in style.
Private Car Transfer:
For the easiest, fuss-free option: contact us! London Perfect can hook you up with a private car transfer, which is hands-down the easiest, safest and most efficient ways to get from Heathrow airport to London.
Ready to fly into London? After a long trip, you’re going to want to relax when you arrive. Let us help you find the most comforting London vacation apartment.