I know that the only way to get this offer is to use the travelcard associated with the trains. I am arriving at Heathrow and plan to take Heathrow Express (can't use the travelcard for this trip). Is there anyway to jump on the train, go one stop and get off in order to validate or are these trains really located outside of the city and is more a waste of time to go through in order to save $60?
The Heathrow Express goes non-stop from the airport to Paddington station. You would need to pay full fare for the HEX ticket and then buy your National Rail travelcards when you get to Paddington.
However, why you are taking the HEX? When you factor in the time it will take you to get from Paddington to your hotel, there are other ways that will be nearly as fast--and a lot cheaper.
Unless your hotel is in Paddington there is no reason to take the HEX. The best way to get into the city from Heathrow is the tube, and it's only 4 pounds each way (cash or Oyster Card). We took the HEX only because it was thrown in with our London Plus Pass (which we ended up not needing). Next time it's the tube as we stay in the Earls Court or Gloucester Road/South Kensington area.
I think I figured it out. The train from Waterloo (we are staying at Premier County Hall) to Hampton Court will qualify for 2 for 1 discount with travelcard. I already have my 2 for 1 vouchers printed. Now I need to adjust my itinary a little bit. Please let me know if I am wrong.
A National Rail travelcard is good for the Tube and Docklands Light Railway--not just National Rail trains--in the zones covered by the card and on the entire London bus network. You don't have to wait until you go to Hampton Court to use one. For example, if you want to visit the Tower of London one day and go to Hampton Court the next, buy travelcards as needed and present the appropriate 2for1 vouchers.
as another option there is an airport shuttle you could consider more than the tube but id you hotel is close by a better option. ck Hethrow website for your best options.
The Travelcards are based on zones, Heathrow is in Zone 6 and virtually everything including hotels and nearly all the sights is in zone 1/2.
The difference in price between a Zone 1/2 Travelcard and a Zone 1/6 Travelcard is so great it doesn't make finnacial sense to purchase a Zone 1/6 Travelcard just to cover one journey from Heathrow or to Hampton Court.
Just buy an extention fare on the odd occassion you gout of the zones. You can also use buses in all zones even though you only have a Travelcard for Zone 1/2.
From Heathrow, there is a train called the Heathrow Connect that is a stopping train that goes along the same track as the Heathrow Express to Paddington.
Its a lot cheaper than Heathrow Express, just takes 10 minutes longer. Still twice the amount of the London Underground or the National Express coaches to Victoria, both 4 GBP
Heathrow connect is what I used from Paddington to Heathrow, it took about 25 minutes. I paid 6 pounds 90 for it in December. It usually leaves from Platform 12 (check marquee) twice an hour from Paddington Train station - not tube station.