London Gatwick Airport
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City has three major
international airports: Heathrow,
Around 90 airlines fly
from Heathrow to over 180 locations worldwide,
carrying nearly 68 million passengers and 1.3 million tonnes of cargo
each year. Heathrow has five terminals, two main runways, and a cross
wind runway. Heathrow provides a wide range of facilities including
those for business, children and disabled travellers. It also offers a
full range of 1st class services. Heathrow
is about 15 miles west of the city. If you have a lot of
luggage, it would be better to take the Airbus A1/A2 to Central part of
Terminal 4 is quite a distance away from Terminal 1/2/3. When you are
leaving city at the Heathrow, please make sure
the terminal for your flight.
Passengers facilities at Heathrow include bureaux de
change and cash machines throughout all four terminals, along with
public telephones, wall-mounted pay fax machines, Wifi internet access,
left luggage and lost property offices, a chapel, health centre and
postal services. Heathrow also has many pharmacies.
passengers will find bureaux de change booths before and after security
in each of the four terminals at Heathrow as well as
conveniently located cash machines. Travelex currency exchange booths
generally open from 05:30 to 22:00, while ICE exchange booths usually
open slightly later, closing about 21:00.
There is a left luggage facility and postal services in the Arrivals
and Departures areas of all four terminals at Heathrow,
apart from the Departures area of Terminal 3, which does not have a
left luggage facility. Left luggage offices generally open from 06:00
to 23:00 and there is also a central lost property office on-site.
from the Heathrow
Public transport to and from the Heathrow is reliable and frequent.
There are plenty of coaches, taxis and regular trains, including the
Heathrow Express. Alternatively there are plenty of parking
companies, car hire providers and hotels nearby.
Airbuses run every 20 minutes and the journey takes about 60-70
minutes. The tickets cost £6 single and £10 return.
A taxi ride to Central part of city costs about £30-50. Just
the signs at the Heathrow to get to the Underground station, Bus stop
the taxi point. Heathrow has the Heathrow
Express service to Paddington station.
Gatwick is about 28
miles south of
the city. The Gatwick Express runs a train service between the Gatwick
and Victoria station in central part of city 24 hours a day (every 15
from 5:30am-8pm, every 30-60 minutes other time). The journey takes 30
minutes and tickets cost £8.90 single and £17.80
return. The Flightline 777 Bus also runs a daily service
(6:35am-11:25pm) from the Gatwick to Victoria Coach Station. Tickets
cost £7.50 single and £11 return.
from the Gatwick
By Taxi -The journey time
from central part of city is 60-70
minutes. Expect a fare approx of £65 to Central part of city
A number of train services run direct to Gatwick Station. There
are direct services from Victoria station: Gatwick Express
trains run every 15 minutes from 05:00 to 23:45 and hourly overnight.
Journey time is 30 minutes. Fare: £10.20 one way,
return/round trip is £19.50. Same day return (valid from 9.30
am) is £11.70. Connex South Central's service from Victoria
at 35 minutes takes a little longer but is cheaper. There are four
trains each hour, Monday to Friday, with hourly service overnight.
Fare: £8.20 one way, £16.40 return/round trip. An
off peak day return is £8.30. Trains from King's Cross
station are Thameslink trains run from Bedford, Luton and St Albans
through King's Cross Thameslink, Farringdon, Blackfriars and London
Bridge stations to Gatwick. There are four trains an hour during the
day. Journey time from King's Cross is 45 minutes. Fare:
£9.50 one way, £10.50 day return/round trip.
There is a frequent Airbus service, the A5, from Victoria coach
station. The first service departs 06.35, the last at 23.25.
During the day there is an hourly service departing Victoria at 25
minutes past the hour. Journey time is around 90 minutes. The A5
service serves both North and South Terminals. Fare: £8 one
way, £10 return/round trip. There are direct Speedlink bus
services from Heathrow, Stansted and Luton and services from
major towns and cities in the UK. The Coach Station is at the South
Terminal. Principal services also drop off at the North Terminal.
Stansted is the
fastest-growing in terms of traffic in Europe and is the main home of
the leading low-cost
scheduled airlines, dealing with over 20 airlines and flying to more
than 124 destinations. Terravision operates a dedicated, direct coach
service between Stansted and Victoria. Services
run up to every 20 minutes, with first service from Victoria at
3am and last service departing from Stansted at 0.40 am. Tickets are
conveniently priced at £8.50 one way and £14 return
with direct connection to Victoria in approximately 75 minutes.
Victoria provides connection to Underground, Rail and
Megabus services and is located close to major tourist areas such as
Nottinghill and Paddington.
Rail: The Gatwick Express
train (tel: 0845 850 1530;
website: www.gatwickexpress.co.uk) runs regularly between 0435 and 0135
to Victoria Station (journey time - 30 minutes). There is also a
Thameslink (tel: 0845 748 4950; website: www.firstcapitalconnect.co.uk)
service, which runs to King’s Cross (journey time - 50
minutes) as well as other stations. Information on all
rail travel is available through the 24-hour National Rail enquiries
line (tel: 0845 748 4950; website: www.nationalrail.co.uk).
Coach: There are more than 400 express coach services operating daily
from the coach stations at both terminals. The main coach station is
located on the ground floor of the South Terminal, with most services
operating from here. Principal routes also stop at the North Terminal
station. National Express (tel: 0870 580 8080; operates most of the
services. National Express coach 700 coaches operate to Heathrow, from
both terminals. The National Express Shuttle coach 25
runs to Victoria Station. The Gatwick Flyer (tel: (01708) 730
555; website: www.gatwickflyer.co.uk) runs to destinations east of
city, and coaches operate from the South Terminal station only. There
are coach information and ticket desks located in the Arrivals
concourse of both terminals. Taxi: The official Gatwick taxi
service is provided by Checker Cars (tel: 0800 747 737; website:
www.checkercars.com). Booking desks are located in the North Terminal
arrivals area, and the northern entrance to the South Terminal, and
cabs wait outside the terminal buildings.
terminals have bureaux de change and
ATMs. There is a post office and a 24-hour Internet café in
the South Terminal. Wireless Internet connection is also available
throughout the Stansted.
Left-luggage facilities are available in both terminals. A lost
property service is also operated by the Excess Baggage Company (tel:
(01293) 502 014 South Terminal or (01293) 502 013 North Terminal).
Other facilities: These include baby changing rooms and showers, a
children’s play area, a medical centre offering vaccinations
(tel: (01293) 507 400) and prayer rooms.
When you first arrive
in city, pick up a free tourist map
transport ticket offices, tourist/cir/information centers, The Oyster
Card is city’s travel
smart card. It’s the quickest and easiest way to travel on
city’s public transport system. It is like a travel credit
card which you can top up as and when you need.
quickest way of getting around in city is by Underground
(i.e., subway, also called the "Tube" in the UK). City has one of the
most comprehensive underground systems in the world (and also the
oldest in the world, built 120 years ago). The tube runs from 5:30am to
midnight Mon-Sat, and from 7:00am to 11:30pm Sun. During the rush hours
(8-9:30am, 5-6:30pm, Mon-Sat), the tube can be very crowded. There are
11 tube lines; each has its own name and color on the tube map. On most
platforms, there are information displays showing the destination and
due time of the next train. Some of the tube line (e.g., northern line)
has two branches, and the displays also show which branch the train is
going to (e.g., Morden Via Bank means the train goes to Morden via the
City also has an extensive bus network (over 17,000 bus stops all
over City). However, it is often difficult to know when you should
get off if you do not know the area well. After midnight, night buses
are the only public transport in City. All night buses have the
prefix N and most of them start from Trafalgar Square.
Travel through the capital in style in a traditional Black Cab (also
called a Hackney Carriage). Nowadays, they're not all black,
but they retain their distinctive shape and can all accommodate 5
people and wheelchairs. Drivers are required to pass a
rigorous geography exam of City’s streets called 'The
Knowledge'. Cabbies are renowned for their discretion and tales
of life in the capital.
Minicabs are a cheaper and more flexible alternative to the
traditional Black Cab. The drivers might not have
the same broad knowledge of the streets as the black
cab drivers, but in the age of satellite navigation systems they rarely
If you are determined not to be completely reliant on public transport,
or want to explore the surrounding countryside, then a car is the only
viable option. Most hire deals include insurance and taxes but check on
booking, and be careful to avoid high insurance excesses.
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