My husband and i are both sixty and are eligible for the senior discount with the railcard. I know we can use it on the express train from Heathrow, does anyone know if there is an additional discount with either the Oyster card or the daily travel pass? Three weeks and counting for London, can't wait!!
Fares for the Heathrow Express are on their website. Oyster Cards are not valid on it, nor are Travelcards. Senior Railcards which cost £28 per person for 12 months entitle the holder to a 34% discount on their full price fare. At £28 per person for the year you need to spend over £82 during the year to break even with a Senior Railcard. On the same route from Heathrow is the somewhat slower Heathrow Connect which stops once or twice and is significantly cheaper. The Heathrow Express is the most expensive train in the UK per mile. The least expensive route to/from the airport is the Underground which do accept the Oyster Card, are fast and efficient. Where are you staying in London, Margaret?
Last year I bought several train tickets online for Southern England. I paid about 1/2 price by ordering early. I took my receipt to a train station in England and had tickets printed. I used Heathrow Connect to get into London. It takes a little longer than the Express, but costs about half as much. Buy tickets at Heathrow; there is a ticket window and ticket machines. I don't know if there is a senior discount on the Oyster (I doubt it) but there are deals to save money. Check with the tfl website (Transport for London). Riding buses saves money and is more scenic, less strain on the legs from climbing stairs. I like to sit in the front of the top level and look down on the passing scene. Taxis aren't very expensive, especially when used by two people. When I am moving my luggage I like to take a taxi from the train station (Paddington). It saves hauling my bag and myself up and down stairs.
We took a bus from Heathrow to Victoria Station last summer, before the Olympics. The drive took 3 times as long as the web site says because of all of the road construction. Enjoyed talking to several passengers and the driver, while sitting, waiting for the traffic to move. Other than the long bus ride, the trip was cheap and actually enjoyable because I got to see parts of London. I was a tourist and was looking forward to seeing London.
"If you buy a Senior Railcard you can set the discount entitlement on a standard adult Oyster card to get 34 per cent discount on: Off-peak pay as you go single fares for journeys on Tube, DLR, London Overground and National Rail services in London The off-peak daily price cap for journeys on Tube, DLR, London Overground and National Rail services in London You can also buy discounted Off-Peak Day Travelcards at anytime on weekends, Public Holidays and after 09:30 Monday to Friday." http://www.tfl.gov.uk/tickets/18343.aspx You have to get the discount set at a booking office. You will need to carry the railcard on the journeys.
Although Senior Railcards can be used on Heathrow Express, you can only obtain the discount by buying your ticket at the ticket office at either Heathrow or London Paddington station. You cannot get the discount if booking online. This seems nonsensical, particularly as (so far as I know) all other rail companies operating in the UK allow the railcard discount to be obtained when using the online booking process. I have asked Heathrow Express (who operate the Paddington to Heathrow service) for an explanation. If I receive one, I will post it on this site.
Yes other rail companies let you use the Senior Railcard when booking on line. My OH uses his on his regular trips to Liverpool to travel first class because with the cheap advance fare plus a further third off with the card it is very affordable. As Nigel says no saving if you are only going to be in London.
Although Heathrow Express doesn't itself sell railcard-discounted tickets online it is possible to buy them from other ticket sellers. Maybe not much use to people visiting on arrival though, as they would have an issue of getting those tickets. HEX used to ignore the restriction on Senior Railcard discount only being valid after 10am weekdays in the Network Card area; not sure if it still does as its current website is silent on this matter.