Train to Bath

Hi, We're landing at Heathrow and traveling right to Bath and region for the following week, retuning to London for a few days before catching the Eurostar to Paris. I'm wondering if I need (or is a good idea) to purchase our train ticket to and from Bath in advance online from here or if it's pretty quick and easy to purchase a ticket to Bath once we get from Heathrow to Paddington Station? I'm thinking of purchasing a round trip ticket verses two singles. Any thoughts? Thnaks!
Chris

Posted by Norma
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
3409 posts

There is National Express coach (bus) service from Heathrow to Bath which you might want to investigate.

Posted by Marco
Oxford, United Kingdom
780 posts

You haven't stated at what time you are arriving or what terminal - each has an affect. The coach service is roughly two-hourly through the day; there are additional services that require you to take a back-tracking connection from Bristol which pushes the journey time towards nearly four hours. If a direct one is convenient however, it does save the trouble of needing to change at all. You can take the Railair coach to Reading to pick up the train to Bath; there shouldn't be much difference in time and it should be cheaper. The exception to the former might be if you were arriving at T4, as you would need to go to another terminal for pick up. Journey times are 2-2.5 hours. As to whether buying train tickets in advance for the outward leg or not it comes down to your risk assessment. If you miss the train you have booked an advance on through flight being late etc you can of course buy a walk-up ticket - but maybe you'd prefer to buy an unrestricted ticket anyway. Coming back from Bath to London buying an advance ticket doesn't have the same uncertainty, although there may be some consideration of buying a CIV ticket if you are connecting directly to Eurostar. (In case you aren't aware, you can buy various types of tickets in advance but the cheapest actually called an advance only allows you to travel on a specific train. CIV tickets are to London International and as well as including the underground transfer, whould require Eurostar to accommodate you on a later train if you have been delayed.)

Posted by Kristen
Chicago
270 posts

Hi Chris, I am travelling in September and I have a similar itinerary so I thought I would share what I am doing. I am taking the National Express Coach fro Heathrow to Bath. It leaves from several terminals, including terminal 3 where I fly in (I am on American). I did purchase the ticket online and I printed it out. And I believe you can pay a little extra to be able to make the departure time a little more flexible. I didn't do that though. I am taking the train back to London though because it is more direct into the city. I also purchased that one online but you get an e-ticket number and print out the ticket at the station, sort of like a flight. From everything I read, it is significantly cheaper to purchase the tickets in advance. Good luck!

Posted by Steve
WI
73 posts

Chris, my wife and I did this in June 2012. We went from Heahtrow to Paddington, and then walked up to a window on a Thursay afternoon and picked up a train ticket to Bath without trouble. We were singles though, and didn't need first class for the short trip. It is really easy to pick up the tickets, and I think trains leave every 20 or 30 minutes to Bath. Have a great trip!