Getting from Gatwick Airport to London’s city centre
Even though Gatwick Airport is located in the county of West Sussex, it’s also classed as London’s second-largest and busiest international airport, with 35 million passengers using the airport every year. The airport’s two terminals (as opposed to Heathrow’s five) can make it a less hectic option to fly in and out of, while the transport links into London city centre make transfers to final London destinations hassle-free.
Travelling into central London by train is most people’s preferred method of public transport.
The fastest and most expensive option is the Gatwick Express
– a non-stop train service going direct to London Victoria train station with a journey time of just 30 minutes. Trains run every 15 minutes for the most part of every day, with the first trains departing Gatwick Airport at 04.35 and the last train departing at 01.35. Similarly, the first train departs London Victoria to Gatwick at 03.30 every day and the last train departs 00.32. Gatwick Airport train station is located in the South Terminal. The free airport shuttle train service between the North and South terminals runs 24 hours a day and the journey between terminals takes just two minutes.
Adult tickets on the Gatwick Express cost £19.90 for a single journey, or £34.90 for a return journey. Buying your tickets online in advance will save you money and if you’re travelling with another person, you can save 25% by getting the Web Duo Anytime Return deal
There are also a number of regular train services that run between Gatwick Airport and central London. There are around four trains per hour from Gatwick Airport to London Victoria and the service runs more or less around the clock. The journey time is approximately 50 minutes and a single ticket costs around £14, or a return ticket £23.
There are also several trains to London Bridge and St Pancras International train stations throughout the day. The London Bridge service runs between 05.00 and 00.40, with a journey time of 35 minutes, single fares starting from £10 and return fares approximately £19. The service to St Pancras International runs 24 hours a day with the same fares as the London Bridge Service. Booking in advance on The Trainline’s website
will often secure you cheaper fares.
There are several coach companies operating from Gatwick Airport to central London, and this is the cheapest transport option from the airport. It’s always best to book tickets in advance to ensure the most competitive prices and to reserve your place on the coach. Remember to build in plenty of time to pass through passport control and baggage reclaim. While most bus providers will allow some flexibility if you arrive late, you will only be allowed on the next service if it’s not already booked up.
The cheapest coach transfer provider is easyBus. More of a minibus service, the easyBus operates 24 hours a day in between Gatwick Airport and Earls Court in west London. The non-stop buses depart every 15 minutes during peak times and single fares cost as little as £2. The service departs from both North and South Terminals and the journey takes just over an hour, depending on traffic. Booking in advance via the easyBus website
will get you the best deals.
The other main coach transfer provider from Gatwick Airport is National Express. These are full-sized coaches that depart from both North and South terminals and arrive at the bus station in London Victoria. Coaches run throughout the day and night and a single fare starts from £7 per person, while the journey time is approximately 1 hour 35 minutes. Booking in advance via the National Express website
can secure cheaper fares. If you’re travelling in a group of three or four people, there is a special offer where each person can pay as little as £5, and no advance booking is required.
As Gatwick Airport is 30 miles outside of London and traffic tends to be heavy, travelling by taxi into central London is the most expensive option. That said, it may be the most comfortable choice if you have a lot of luggage. Journey times vary depending on your final destination and the time of day you travel, but will take just over an hour on average. Taxis charge by the meter, although some minicabs companies offer fixed fares into London. Taxi fares are likely to cost between £60 and £100. You can catch a taxi from the airport’s taxi rank on the day, or book a minicab in advance using a number of taxi firms, such as Road Express 24/7
or Airport Pickups London
Transfer from the Airport - online Booking
Hiring a car for your London stay is another pricey option, as parking in London is difficult to find, very expensive and you have to pay a daily congestion charge of approximately £10 per day to drive around in the city. Excellent public transport in London further reduces the need for a car. If you do want to rent a car, however, all the usual car rental companies have offices at Gatwick Airport. The price of the car rental itself is fairly cheap, starting from £12 per day. You’ll get a cheaper deal if you book in advance through a car price comparison website such as Rhino Car Hire
Airport Transfer with a Private Car Service
The most comfortable and relaxing way to get from Gatwick Airport to the city center is by a private airport transfer. Pre-book your transfer online before you fly and there will be a chauffeur waiting for you once you land, in the arrivals hall. The driver will be driving a premium black vehicle for you can relax while being driven to your apartment or hotel.
This is an ideal service if it is your first time in London and you are nervous about getting to your apartment or if you apartment is not accessible by public transportation. This service is also about the same price as a taxi.
Our recommended company for this service in London is myDriver Airport Transfer London.