We will be visiting Europe for the first time in April 2022. We will arrive at Heathrow at 9:30 AM on a Saturday. What is the best way to travel from Heathrow to the Holiday Inn Kensington High Street? I know a black cab is quite expensive, but it seems the simplest for jet-lagged, inexperienced Europe travelers. Any advice?
Define best? Fastest, cheapest, easiest, most comfortable? You can take the tube with one change.
My “best” is defined as most convenient and fastest for a 1st time Europe traveler.
Depending on which terminal you arrive and the status of the traffic on the day you arrive, it maybe as quick or quicker to use public transport.
London Underground Heathrow to Earl’s Court on the Piccadilly line then change onto the District line to High St Ken then your hotel is just a few minutes walk. It’s about an hour.
It is an easy Tube ride from Heathrow to Kensington, about 15 minutes. We would then just walk to the hotel from there, but that is me/us. A nice walk would help wake you up. Just have your own instructions written down for the walk and check out the necessary stores/restaurants along the way. If you have large luggage or have a hard time with directions, pick up a cab around Kensington, but it looks hardly worth it as the walk is not far and it is a pleasant enough area. You can review a tube map before you go for specifics.
The travel website rome2rio provides detailed options, timeframes, and cost estimates. Simply enter your point of origin and your destination into the transport field. Transportation methods using train, bus, underground, taxi, connections, and walking, etc. will populate. Have a wonderful trip.
Heathrow Express to Paddington Station ( 15-20 minutes)
Then 11 minute tube ride to High St Station and then a 3 min walk to hotel ( or a cab from Paddigton the last 2 miles to the hotel)
If you decide to take the tube, it will be about an hour not 15 minutes.
Piccadilly line to Earls Court, take the lift up to the District line. Make sure it is the District line heading towards "Edgeware Road"
Or, you can arrange for a car service which will be less than a black cab. That goes from terminal to hotel.
Change from the Piccadilly Line to the District Line at Barons Court, then you will arrive at Earls Court on the same level as the High Street Kensington / Edgware Road District trains. A couple of cross (or even same) platform changes beats changing level.
There are some others, and other posters may have more information.
I always use the tube when arriving back at Heathrow, that's what works best for me. But I don't know how much luggage you have to wrangle, nor the make-up (ages, limitations etc) of your group - so don't know what will work best for you..
I generally use Heathrow express (the further in advance you buy ticket-the less expensive) and then follow the markings on the floor at Paddington straight to the taxi stand for a delivery the rest of the way to my hotel after a flight. The remainder of the trip I take the tube. That is as a solo traveler.
You may find that for the two of you, car service may be the same cost and more convenient.
One thing I do before riding an unfamiliar transport system is to watch you tube “how to” videos on the topic. You may find this helpful to do in advance of your trip.
At the risk of losing brownie points in the "intrepid tourists club", I'd say it Is an easy choice. Book a car service such as one of those named above. It will be cheaper than just jumping in a black cab, but still have the convenience and simplicity of door to door transport. It won't be the cheapest option, although as there are at least two of you that does "spread" the cost. There are good times for saving money when travelling - but I think making this journey (involving at least one change by public transport after arriving on an overnight long haul flight) isn't one of them.
Use the Transport for London website (tfl.gov.uk) not Rome2rio for any transport queries including live updates.
2nd don't use Rome2Rio
their results are often useless
If you want easiest at a price that less expensive than a black cab, use a pre-booked car service. You will get a fixed price and the driver will meet you at the airport and take you to your hotel. One of the prior posters provided links for a couple of frequently mentioned services above.
Using the tube in London is very easy as long as you are comfortable carrying your luggage up steps. This will be the cheapest option. You would take the tube to Earl’s Court and then transfer there to the District Line and go one stop to Kensington High Street. There are steps between the platform and the exit. The Holiday Inn Kensington High Street is only a block away from the tube station. Basically, you turn left as you exit the station onto the High Street and then your first left on the side street (Wright’s Lane) and walk to the end. I stayed at this hotel many years ago before it was part of the IHG chain.
While there are other options, these are the two I think would be your best options given where you are staying.
edit: Marco’s suggestion to first change to a District line train at Baron’s Court and then change again at Earl’s Court is a good one as it would avoid having to switch levels at Earl’s Court.
Thank you for all the advice! A car service feels like the best choice in our situation. I agree with Nick that there are times to save money, but jet-lagged after a long haul flight isn’t that time.