Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

Ground Transport: Heathrow Express or Heathrow Connect

Ground Transport: Heathrow Express or Heathrow Connect

Old Jan 1st, 2015, 09:50 AM
  #1  
moo
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 251
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Ground Transport: Heathrow Express or Heathrow Connect

Son arriving at Heathrow for semester abroad needs to get from Heathrow to City of London area. We were looking at Heathrow Express to Paddington and then a cab to his accommodations near City University. We found Heathrow Connect which seems to be a longer ride with multiple stops but for half the fare of Heathrow Express. Any suggestions of which is easier to take, find in the terminal, less hassle, less confusing, etc.? He will most likely have one large suitcase and a midsized backpack. His first trip to London (solo) and the Tube may be a bit daunting for a first timer with big luggage.

Any suggestions or opinions on Heathrow Express vs. Heathrow Connect? Other options?
moo is offline  
Old Jan 1st, 2015, 10:02 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 6,629
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Compare costs of Heathrow Connect and taxi with a Justairports pickup at Heathrow.

www.justairports.com

It gets very good reviews for value/cost and reliability.

The tube would not be that daunting and it's rarely full leaving Heathrow so easy to get a seat. If he doesn't want to change lines (understandable with luggage) he could get off at Holborn or further east depending on his end destination and then take a taxi.
Cathinjoetown is offline  
Old Jan 1st, 2015, 10:03 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 1,367
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If your son wishes to save money and go somewhere far from his eventual destination then take the Heathrow Connect. If he wants to spend a lot of money and travel quickly to somewhere far from his eventual destination then take the Heathrow Express.

The better options would be to take the Tube or a pre-booked car service from Heathrow.
sofarsogood is offline  
Old Jan 1st, 2015, 10:31 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 68,018
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
>>Any suggestions or opinions on Heathrow Express vs. Heathrow Connect?Neither!

If he needs to get to City University (you need to be pretty specific w/ locations but I'm assuming he needs to get to Northampton Square) Going to Paddington will be of no help at all. He'd either then have a VERY expensive cab ride or a schlepp on the tube w/ a nasty line change and a half mile walk from Angel.

The tube all the way from LHR would be much cheaper and doable if he can easily handle his bags - but a bit of a slog.

If he has a lot of luggage car service like justairports.com will be MUCH cheaper than a train to Paddington + cab, and much easier than the other options. If he has a lot of luggage -- car service, if manageable luggage -- tube.

Forget the train.
janisj is online now  
Old Jan 1st, 2015, 10:36 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 38,861
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
ONE word of caution about using a taxi or a car service: there is absolutely NO guarantee that doing so is necessarily going to get you to your final destination faster than the rail possibilities or the Tube.

Why? Because of one thing (depending on time of day/day of the week): TRAFFIC. When we arrived at LHR in October on a weekeday morning it took our car almost two hours to get to The Strand and it was not because we were taking our time to see things, either.
Dukey1 is offline  
Old Jan 1st, 2015, 10:38 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 68,018
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
A car service won't usually be faster -- that is a given. But it is door-to-door and very often MUCH easier.

Unless speed is one's only consideration . . . .
janisj is online now  
Old Jan 1st, 2015, 11:07 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 17,263
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Depending on how difficult his bags are to carry and precisely where his accommodation actually is, it's quite possible the lowest cost option of all (direct tube to Kings Cross, then a bus) might make sense for someone of student age. It's certainly how most of us used to travel with his amount of bags from outside London to Islington at his age.

City University is a distance from Angel station, but its accommodation blocks are scattered round a large slug of inner suburban NE London, and there's a dense network of buses to many parts of the area from Kings Cross.

Go to the Journey Planner at tfl.gov.uk, select the Public Transport tab and deselect all transport options except bus and tube.

Input the full (possibly 7 character, but possibly 5) postcode of the accommodation - not of the university - into the destination cell, then see what comes up.

We'll get onto explaining the best way of paying for this if he decides to use the traditional method students use to get around.
flanneruk is offline  
Old Jan 3rd, 2015, 08:23 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 173
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I always recommend Heathrow Connect over Heathrow Express if people have a tight budget - the additional 12-15 minutes on the journey between Heathrow and Paddington Station is pretty irrelevant when you think of the time taken for a transatlantic flight. And the £10 or so saved is £10 more for something more worthwhile. The only downside is the 30 minute interval between Connect trains, unlike the 15 minutes between Express trains. Flanneruk is right about the tube - cheaper and may even take your son exactly where he needs to get to, without having to change lines which he will certainly have to do at Paddington.
Grindeldoo is offline  
Old Jan 3rd, 2015, 07:25 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 8
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If I may add my two cents - I had to catch the Tube last year as a last resort when my airport pick-up didn't show up (it was my first time travelling overseas alone, and after 22 hours of flying, it was the last thing I needed!). Plenty of signage to direct you to the right spot, and the personnel manning the ticket desks were extremely helpful - they're very knowledgeable and knew exactly what I needed/type of fare/where to get off etc etc. I arrived just as peak hour hit, so the Tube was packed to the brim by the time I got into London, but all in all it was a smooth, easy process that wasn't as daunting as it seemed. It was actually my "oh my gosh, I'm in LONDON!" moment,
Liata is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
DCJones
Europe
4
Oct 12th, 2014 09:39 PM
Clea
Europe
17
Jun 16th, 2008 07:49 PM
mishoe01
Europe
27
Jan 29th, 2006 08:06 AM
enewell
Europe
8
Dec 19th, 2003 11:45 AM
Ken
Europe
4
Aug 14th, 2002 01:06 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 08:07 PM.