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tolondonwego Sep 25th, 2005 09:29 AM

Taxi from Gatwick to London?
I'm trying to decide whether to hire a private car or take a taxi from Gatwick to the Marriott County Hall (near the Eye). I'm traveling with my mother who is not able to take the tube/rail.

Are taxis easily accessable? Much hassle involved? What is the cost for 3?

Thanks for any advise.

flanneruk Sep 25th, 2005 09:50 AM

What do you mean by accessible?

Can you hire a taxi at Gatwick? Of course.

Or do the taxis on the public ranks at Gatwick conform to the best standards of accessibility? No. Taxis at Gatwick haven't been determined by London's Public Carriage Office (Heathrow, and most other British airports, have PCO-compliant cabs), and public taxis at Gatwick are unmodified ordinary cars, which may be difficult for some people with mobility difficulties to get into. PCO-compliant cabs can take the wheelchair-bound without their needing to get out ofthe chair.

A taxi off the rank at Gatwick into London will probably cost you £82 per taxi, or a bit less on Sundays. It'll take 3 people. A pre-booked car will cost about half that.

If your mother has problems getting into ordinary cars, you'll need to get a peoplemover or whatever from the pre-hire companies, but they will cost a good bit more, and rival the cost of a taxi from the ranks.

ben_haines_london Sep 25th, 2005 10:22 AM

Would you like to give rail a second thought ? For just a five euro tip you can ask the airline to book you a passenger trolley from the foot of the plane steps via baggage collection to the front of the airport hall.

If you ask the Gatwick express line customer relations staff they will meet your party from the front of the airport hall and run them to the train, and from the train at Victoria to the taxi rank in front of Victoria station. I did it a month ago, and felt quite lordly as I swept past lines of people waiting for passport checks and so on. You can phone them in British office hours, at transatlantic rates, on 0044 845 850 15 30, and ask for disabled customer services, or write to them at
Customer Relations
Gatwick Express Ltd.
52 Grosvenor Gardens
I am afraid that their site at shows that you cannot e-mail them. To be sure, you should ask the rail staff to collect you at the airport exit beside the rail ticket office an hour after scheduled touch-down, but of course tell them your flight details. Again, you pay the men at Gatwick and Victoria a five euro tip each.

Whether you go by car or train, I expect you know the meticulously researched book Access in London, by Gordon Couch and others, 1996, 7 pounds 95 in Britain, ISBN 1 89916318-2. More is on tg/detail/-/1899163182?v=glance

Please write if I can help further. I am pleased to find that my misfortune is your fortune, in that I can advise you from experience.

Welcome to London.

Ben Haines
[email protected]

Intrepid1 Sep 25th, 2005 12:23 PM

What a wonderful and helpful reply from Mr. Haines and I am glad to hear that he shares the views of some of us that pushing someone around an airport in a wheelchair deserves a tip, too!

Viajero2 Sep 25th, 2005 12:32 PM

I took the Victoria Express from Gatwick to Victoria Station ($12/pp one-way) and think this was actually much easier and acesible than taking a taxi!

janis Sep 25th, 2005 12:34 PM

Even w/o Ben's excellent information - I would find the train preferable. A car/cab will take twice as long - or easily even more - as the train.

With the info about assistance available at both ends - the train is a no brainer . . . .

tolondonwego Sep 25th, 2005 02:17 PM

Thanks to everyone, especially Mr. Haines, for the excellent advise. We've decided the Gatwick Express is the way to go!

Robespierre Sep 25th, 2005 04:15 PM

Just as a footnote: Gatwick Express has a special fare that will allow three or four people to travel for the price of two.

kswl Sep 25th, 2005 04:51 PM

A few years ago we hired a limo service to pick us up at Gatwick. It was necessary because we were carrying a ton of luggage for several special events. The price wasn't too bad, considering there were four of us, but we were caught in the morning traffic and it took almost three, painful hours to get to Covent Garden. :'(

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