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Getting to London From Gatwick (June 2nd)

With the news that trains will likely not be running on this day, I am hoping to gain some clarity on the fastest way to get to London from Gatwick (landing around 12pm from Bergen, Norway). I have never actually been to Gatwick before. I was a bit surprised that the National Express Coach approaches 2 1/2 hours to go from Gatwick to London Victoria. I can handle what I assume would be a rather hefty taxi ride (100 pounds or more?), but will the taxi ranks at Gatwick be utter madness with the trains being down? I see ride services are possible at Gatwick but will the drive time to London swell with what I can imagine will busier than normal traffic? When I land, I prefer to go, not wait around. I enjoy the tube. Are there any local bus/coach connections that can get me to the nearest tube station which I could take from there? The thought of sitting in a coach (or taxi) for 2 1/2 hours is slightly worrisome to me on what will be my last full day across the pond. I have the ability to push my flight up to June 1st but not sure if that makes sense either. My hotel is not yet booked on this night, but I was leaning towards being near Earls Court Tube Station. Any comments and insight is appreciated. Thanks.

Posted by
24 posts

The Earl’s Court station is a 200 meter walk from the Premier Inn Kensington (Earl’s Court). Stayed there 7 nights 1st week April. If eating breakfast there do so before the tourist rush 8-8:30 - it can be a madhouse!

Posted by
6364 posts

2 June is an RMT (guards) Union Strike day, not ASLEF (drivers).

On RMT strike days a reasonable service level has been provided. Until announced otherwise I would assume that will be the case on 2 June.
As your fallback- The tube network south of the Thames is not as good as north of the river. There is no useful tube station. The local bus company is called Metrobus but they don't run a bus from the airport which is of any use to you.
If you can get the first 16 miles into Croydon you have the Croydon Tram to Wimbledon, then the District line to Earls Court, but no sensible local bus connection gets you there.

But if there were no main line trains running then the fastest route to Earls Court may well be National Express to Heathrow then the Piccadilly Line to Earls Court, but are you aware that the 1340 and 1435 coaches from Gatwick to London actually stop at Earls Court (a 1 hour 50 minute journey- so maybe 20 minutes longer, if that, than the via Heathrow routing)?

Posted by
33107 posts

Gatwick to central London (or return) on rubber tyres is never any fun, even when there isn't a strike.

The motorway (M23) from Gatwick towards London ends just past the M25 so the last 20 miles is on ordinary, busy, crowded slow roads with traffic lights and 30 mph, and several 20 mph, limits.

It is never fast. On a strike day take an extra helping of patience. Maybe two.

Posted by
6364 posts

PS- almost all the other National Express coaches from Gatwick call at Hammersmith on their way into London (about a 35 minute shorter journey than Victoria)- 2 tube stops from Earls Court on the Piccadilly.

Posted by
370 posts

Thank you for the replies. Good to know that there may be some train service from Gatwick into London (I will keep my eyes open). I actually considered the National Express to Heathrow then take the Piccadilly Line to Earls Court, so it sounds like I wasn't totally off base since it made it to your posting. With over a dozen trips to the UK, I still get more information from being on this site compared to the information I give out. Thanks.

Posted by
358 posts

I have travelled on 3 or 4 of the previous strike days from or to Gatwick - trains ran each time as it is a priority route and there is no reason to think it will be any different. Some will be cancelled, others delayed but many will run. It's actually much less of an issue heading into London as you can always jump on anything and sort it out via the Underground on arrival

Posted by
6364 posts

By the way, for the sake of completeness, the way to get from Gatwick South Terminal to Croydon by bus, if you really had to, is by Metrobus 460 to Redhill (a 25 minute journey), then on the Transport for London (even though Redhill is in Surrey) bus 405 to Croydon- a 45 minute journey.
I saw that route yesterday, but have just had it confirmed to me in a You Tube Video of someone doing London to Paris by citybus services in 24 hours, that this is the correct route. As recently as 1999 the London bus route 405 ran all the way from Croydon to Gatwick, and beyond.
At least you have been given every alternative.