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Maneuvering London airports - ticket to French city

Maneuvering London airports - ticket to French city

Jun 13th, 2019, 07:38 AM
  #1  
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Maneuvering London airports - ticket to French city

This is a mother/daughter trip. Found last minute great deal. Just booked this month. We are flying RT from NYC to LHR. Land in LHR on 7/10 at around 7:20am. We are only spending about 7 days vacationing. We want to spend the last few days of our trip in London. We want to spend the first few days in a different city in France. We are looking at Paris, Nice, and/or Annecy. Really just looking for options that would give us most affordable flight. In order to save money, I was thinking of getting a flight from London to one of these places on same day as our London arrival (7/10) right after we land while we are still in the airport. However, I have found that there are multiple different airports in London. Other London airports do have cheaper flights than LHR to these cities. Considering OW tickets to visit both Nice and Annecy and then back to London. Or maybe just one French city. Once we get to our destination, we will crash. We just want to start our vacay out in the French city. Note to consider: My daughter stayed in Paris last summer-she was taking classes, but really neither us speak French.

Questions:
1.
How do you economically travel from airport to airport within London (and safely of course)? I have looked online, and cannot find recent info on this. We will not have checked baggage. One carry on and a personal bag. I assumed there would be info already written about this out there somewhere.

2. After arriving in LHR on 7/10 at 7:20am from NYC, (assuming we just stay at the LHR airport or travel to another London airport) what is a reasonable time I could then book my next flight out from London airport to French city. Not sure how long lines will be after getting off plane in London that morning at 7:20am.

Ihope2travel is offline  
Jun 13th, 2019, 08:21 AM
  #2  
J62
 
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For flight out of LHR, personally, I would be comfortable with a flight any time after about 9:30am, assuming I could get my boarding pass before I left home.
Others will tell you nothing less than 3hrs, or maybe more to be safe. It all depends on your risk tolerance. The real question you need to ask yourself if you book a connection that has some risk is "what will I do if I miss my flight?" so you're prepared to accept that if it happens.

There are ways to get between the various airports - others will have to weigh in the best ways like express buses.
Would you consider trying to get from JFK to Newark during morning rush hour? I would not under any circumstances, even if I saved $100 a person as I know what rush hour traffic in a big city can be like.
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Jun 13th, 2019, 08:27 AM
  #3  
 
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>>However, I have found that there are multiple different airports in London. Other London airports do have cheaper flights than LHR to these cities. <<

Bad Bad BAD idea. Most savings will be eaten up with the transfer costs plus the extra time you have to build in for the transfer. Most of the other regional airports(LGW/Stanstead/Luton have express coaches -- but they are all 1.5 to 2.5 hours from LHR. Plus all of the budget airlines have very strict advance check in requirements so you'd need to be at any of those airports at least 2 hors in ad vance-- added to the 1.5 hours or more for Immigration and luggage at LHR you are talking about an onward flight in the late afternoon at the earliest.

I'd just book a flight from LHR to Paris or whichever regional city you decide on, 4 to 5 hours after your scheduled arrival. Then afterwards take the Eurostar train. from France to London - but you'll want to book the Eurostar ASAP.

>>Not sure how long lines will be after getting off plane in London that morning at 7:20am.<<

No one can know that -- but a LOT of long haul flights arrive in the early AM so the queues can be enormous.
janisj is offline  
Jun 13th, 2019, 08:30 AM
  #4  
 
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>>For flight out of LHR, personally, I would be comfortable with a flight any time after about 9:30am, assuming I could get my boarding pass before I left home.<<

Didn't see J62's post. IMO/IME two hours is WAAAAAY too short after a transatlantic arrival. The immigration line alone can easily than 1.5 hours and there will more than likely be a terminal change.
janisj is offline  
Jun 13th, 2019, 08:31 AM
  #5  
 
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I'm going to ask the moderators to move your thread to the Europe forum --there is a lot more activity on that board and lots of UK/France experts only post there.
janisj is offline  
Jun 13th, 2019, 08:58 AM
  #6  
 
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Just saw Kathie's post on your other thread -- I completely missed that you ENTIRE trip is 7 days. You simply do not have time to spend two full days traveling to/from France (that is about what it would take when you figure travel/transfers/checking in/checking out/etc). Just stay in London. If you want to get out of town -- you can take a day trip by train to Oxford or Brighton, or Winchester or someplace.
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Jun 13th, 2019, 09:02 AM
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You don't have time for France. You barely have time for London.
StCirq is online now  
Jun 13th, 2019, 09:16 AM
  #8  
 
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Echoing many of these thoughts... plus: you don't take into account the possibility of your flight to Heathrow having a delayed departure and thus a very late arrival. Booking two separate tickets means ... if you arrive too late to connect to your new flight, you're totally out of luck. You've lost the money on your second flight, and you've possibly lost a no-show fee for your hotel room in your eventual destination. By trying to save a few dollars, euros, or pounds, you risk a larger loss — plus untold stress.

If you wanted to visit France + London, you should have booked an open-jaw ticket —fly into Paris, fly out of London.
travelhorizons is offline  
Jun 13th, 2019, 09:17 AM
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One way on BA from LHR to Paris with enough time at Heathrow to allow for a comfortable connection will cost around £136; a round trip with, say, 72 hours in Paris, will be around £190 (Air France.)

One way from LHR to Geneva (then bus to Annecy) would be £112; round trip around £240. Nice is way more costly.

Pretty expensive for such a short visit. I'd pick Annecy because lodging is likely to be cheaper.
Gardyloo is offline  
Jun 13th, 2019, 12:04 PM
  #10  
 
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<>Stanstead>> Itís spelled Stansted, itís in the middle of nowhere and not remotely close to London. Everytime Iíve used it there have been issues with one thing or another. I would avoid. The cost of getting there and time involved makes it a pointless airport to depart from. Same applies to Luton. If you arrive into LHR, your onward flight should be from LHR. What time your next flight should be depends on what terminal you arrive and what terminal you depart from. There can be quite a distance between them.

Flights from NYC to LHR usually arrive earlier than scheduled arrival time but NYC also suffers from bad weather frequently which can result in delays.

There are flights from LHR to several French cities, eg Lyon, Toulouse, Marseille as well as Nice & Paris.




Odin is offline  
Jun 13th, 2019, 12:15 PM
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I would stay in London. If you really want to add that French city, spring for a ticket the same day from Heathrow into Paris. Or mid-trrip you can do a train from London to Paris and stay a night or two.

I don't think you have time to go somewhere like Annecy or be changing among various airports in London. If you want to save money, just stay in London for the week. No shortage of things to see and do there!
suze is offline  
Jun 13th, 2019, 01:41 PM
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I think it makes the most sense to book a Noon-ish flight from Heathrow into Paris (book 2 nights hotel). Then take the train or fly back to London (5 nights hotel).

I love love love the Lac Leman ("lake Geneva") area of Switzerland and seeing some of those town along with Annecy would be a great trip. I just don't think it fits with a one week vacation with plane tickets already booked in and out of London. If you want Annecy, next time fly Geneva and do a Swiss vacation
suze is offline  
Jun 13th, 2019, 02:41 PM
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>><>Stanstead>> It’s spelled Stansted<<

Yes, I know -- it may have been an autocorrect???
janisj is offline  
Jun 13th, 2019, 03:32 PM
  #14  
P_M
 
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I hope by now you have abandoned the idea of trying to cram a few days in France into a 7 day trip to London. You can easily fill up 7 days in London and you will still leave feeling like you missed something. If you get tired of the city you can do some great day trips from London but for Heaven's sake don't even think about going to France on such a short trip.

Just for future reference, do not ever do an airport change in London if it can possibly be avoided. It's expensive and it's a huge pain in the a**. I did it once and I only accepted these terms because I was using a free ticket. You will not save money, time or headaches, and it's especially no fun when you are already feeling jet lagged from the overseas flight.

Please take this advice in the kind and helpful spirit in which it is given. We don't want your mother/daughter trip to turn into a mother/daughter nightmare. If you need advice on what to do in London you will get loads of helpful information from the Fodorites.
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Jun 13th, 2019, 03:46 PM
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Hi again -- I notice you are brand new . . . Welcome to Fodors. The only problem is, new members are on a sort of 'probation' that limits how often you can post for the first few days. So -- I'd take some time and read over/digest the responses to both of your threads and come back with your new thoughts/questions when you can post again tomorrow.

Let us know what your interests are, your daughter's age, etc.
janisj is offline  
Jun 13th, 2019, 07:02 PM
  #16  
 
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I get the impression this isn't a trip to London . The OP found a cheap ticket that ends up in London but they'd rather be in France.

OP. Spend the first day in London. Get over jet lag. Take the train to Paris the next morning. If you buy the train ticket in advance it won't be that expensive. Take the train back.Spend the last night in London.

Don't expect to see much of London but it's the least risky way of trying to make a connection
Traveler_Nick is online now  
Jun 13th, 2019, 08:48 PM
  #17  
 
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>>I get the impression this isn't a trip to London . The OP found a cheap ticket that ends up in London but they'd rather be in France.<<

Not sure how you sussed that since the OP specifically says >> We want to spend the last few days of our trip in London.<<. Not 'have to' but 'want to' . . .

But let's wait til she can post again tomorrow for some clarifications . . .
janisj is offline  
Jun 13th, 2019, 09:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Ihope2travel View Post
. Found last minute great deal..
That doesn't sound like the important thing was London.
Traveler_Nick is online now  
Jun 16th, 2019, 07:11 PM
  #19  
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Greetings - thanks for your replies. We will be leaving NYC on July 9 and arriving in Heathrow airport morning of July 10th. We are leaving Heathrow around dinner time on July 17th to fly home. When I originally booked the flights, I thought we’d stay in London. However after I booked, my daughter and I started talking and we think it would be fun to also visit a French city together. She took a college class in Paris last summer, and when I was in college many years ago, I also did a study abroad in France. This will very likely be the only overseas trip I’ll get to take with my daughter. When I go back again, it might be with my husband or maybe another one of my children. My daughter really wants to see Bastille Day in France again. I haven’t decided if we will do this or not. I did notice air fare prices to Annecy came down.

We we would like to see many of the typical sites: London Bridge, Trafalgar Square, Malty Street Market (not sure what this is yet - DD mentioned it), Sky Garden, experience afternoon tea (we really want to do this!), explore Covent Garden, Tower of London, changing of guard (maybe - sounds too crowded - like we may not even be able to see), West Minister Abbey, etc... maybe see a concert/play, and go window shopping, etc... I’m sure we won’t see everything, but that’s okay. And truthfully, I have been doing some reading since booking our flights. I’m getting kind of concerned about the violent crime in London.

Any suggestions on on where to stay in Covent Garden? What about the LSE student hall in Covent Garden? Is there security here? In general, what kind of room can we get for around $200 a night in London? However, if we find more reasonable accommodations, then that is $ we will be able to use elsewhere. My daughter stayed in the FIAP in Paris last summer and said that it was fine (also had security), but it had no air conditioning. I just want it to be clean and safe. Are there certain areas in London you would not stay overnight?


Ihope2travel is offline  
Jun 16th, 2019, 08:12 PM
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OK -- >> . . . typical sites: London Bridge<< London Br. Is a modern semi ugly span -- can we assume you mean Tower Bridge?

Malty Street Market is fun but it is pretty small - and only runs on weekends. Could she possibly mean Borough Market?

>>what kind of room can we get for around $200 <<. $200 = approx £150 which is difficult in Covent Garden -- unless you stay at someplace like the Travelodge or HUB which -- depending on the date could be well within your budget or over (rate tend to be very date specific so you'll have to check)

>>What about the LSE student hall in Covent Garden? Is there security here?<<

>>Are there certain areas in London you would not stay overnight?<<

Yes lots - but none in central London that I would avoid for security reasons. I wouldn't stay in some areas because they might be inconvenient for what I want to see/do that trip.

LSE is a fabulous budget option . . . IF you can get in. They are very popular and do book up far ahead. Not sure what your security concerns are - They are flats and you'd have your own room/key -- no different security issues than normal hotels.

But you are still trying to squeeze in a LOT in 7 days and have huge logistics problems.. A little less than 7 days actually. Arrival day 10 July is pretty much a non-day -- maybe some light outdoors sightseeing but not much else. Then you must be in London by the evening of 16 July.

Paris is doable but you won't have almost any time for London- especially if you must be in Paris on Bastille Day. You would only have the 15th and 16th in London. You'd fly on to CDG on the 10th and take Eurostar to London early morning on Monday the 15th (IF you can get seats -- that will be a busy travel day).

If you try to fit in London before Paris, then you have an extra hotel change in an already too short trip for Paris/London - you'll want to return to London by the evening of the 16th. Plus you may find Eurostar tix are pretty expensive at this late date.
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