London Heathrow to Eurostar station

We are arriving at London Heathrow Airport @ 13:05. How long will it take us to get to the station to catch the Eurostar train to Paris? I have been advised to be at the station 30min. early. What is the fastest way to get there? Where do you catch the Eurostar in London?

Posted by Southam
Windsor, Ontario, Canada
912 posts

Why not just fly, since you're at a big international airport anyhow? British Air has afternoon flights to both Orly and Charles de Gaulle airports from Heathrow. When you add in the time, hassle and expense getting into London (St Pancras station, by the way) and going through airport-style security for a train that can be quite costly itself, a plane ticket could be as cheap and certainly less effort. It might have been even cheaper if you had bought it as an extension of your flight into Heathrow.

Posted by Ronald
Amarillo, TX, USA
11 posts

That is perfect advice and makes sense. We are from a small town and have never ridden a train and this is one of the things we wanted to do on our vacation. Now it looks as if we might not be able to make the connection after we have purchased tickets on the train. Do you have an idea of the time or distance between the airport and the train station? It would help us decide whether to buy air tickets and "eat" the train tickets. Thank you.

Posted by Ronald
Amarillo, TX, USA
11 posts

That is perfect advice and makes sense. We are from a small town and have never ridden a train and this is one of the things we wanted to do on our vacation. Now it looks as if we might not be able to make the connection after we have purchased tickets on the train. Do you have an idea of the time or distance between the airport and the train station? It would help us decide whether to buy air tickets and "eat" the train tickets. Thank you.

Posted by Laura
Virginia, USA
2899 posts

You need to allow at least one hour to get through immigration and customs at Heathrow. Then, it takes about one hour to get from Heathrow to St Pancras on the tube. This is the most direct route. You take the tube (Piccadilly line) from Heathrow to Kings Cross/St Pancras. You do need to make sure that there are no engineering works taking place on the tube that weekend. You can check this on tfl.gov.uk. I see a couple of weekends where there is work on the Piccadilly line. Other options include a car service to St Pancras, the Heathrow Express to Paddington with a transfer to tube or taxi. Then you need to be at the Eurostar station about 45 minutes before your train departs. You need to be checked-in at least 30 minutes in advance and you go through airport style security and French immigration in the London station. This doesn't allow for a delayed flight or an exceptionally long immigration line.

Posted by Laura
Virginia, USA
2899 posts

One more question ... what date are you arriving and what airline are you flying?

Posted by Ray
Portland, Oregon, USA
1353 posts

hi, heres my 0.02. if you have your heart set on taking a train, then is say JUST DO IT. yes, you can do a flight to there, but if one of the reasons for your travels is to experience europe and the difference, then again, JUST DO IT. Of course, if you didnt plan enough layover time to get to the train, then it maybe worth it to just fly over. But that is something you will need to evaluate for yourself. If you havent bought your tickest give yourself some buffer time +. It will give you a chance to catch your breath and realize where you are and where youre going. when i travel and am not sure how long it will take for a transfer i always try to give myself 2-3 hours. Its not the best way to see places, but it allows me to recoup, enjoy the people watching and get my head in order for the next place. Just another comment. If your final destination is Paris, there is nothing stopping you from taking the reverse trip into LOndon for a day and then back to Paris. anyway, thats how im seeing this. one last personal comment. I can understand why you 2 want to try the train system over here, because until i started to travel for work many years ago, i was ignorant of how AWSOME the train system was over here and how much ours SUCK! unfortunately, i have to travel over to europe to ride the trains, but so be it since i am hooked. one last comment. Think about getting RS book on London or France. It covers your questions about getting from LHR to London to Paris. happy rails = happy trails.

Posted by Swan
Napa, CA
2858 posts

By Underground (the Tube) it takes an hour from LHR to St Pancras. After passport control and customs, it takes a few minutes to walk to the Underground station, buy tickets, catch a train. The train will start at almost empty at LHR, so you will have a seat and a place (near the door) for your luggage. Time involved getting to the train does depend on how long it takes to get through passport control and make your way to the Tube. I think I would allow about 4 hours from time of arrival by plane before scheduling a Eurostar trip to Paris. If your plane is much delayed, it could take longer. What I do is stay at a hotel in the Kings Cross/St Pancras area for one night. Then I take a train to Paris the next day. That way, it isn't so important if my plane is delayed. Plus, it gives me that first day to recover from the jetlag of the plane flight. I usually have enough energy to browse around London some before getting a good night's sleep. St Pancras Station is a shopping mall as well as a train station. You can buy lunch or dinner supplies there, have a meal in the station, shop at Boots for any pharmacy-type supplies, and people-watch. Look for the Eurostar area and be sure to enter that area at least 30 min before your train departs. Follow the monitors and the crowd to get to your train.

Posted by Nigel
East Midlands, England
8755 posts

Hi Ronald, It sounds like your Eurostar tickets are already bought? What time are they for? Which airline will you be flying in on? What day of the week do you leave Texas or arrive in London?

Posted by George
Independence, KS, USA
532 posts

We always fly into Heathrow and we much prefer the Eurostar to Paris. We came back from Istanbul last spring to LHR and allowed 4 hours to catch our prepaid Eurostar to Paris. We allow plenty of slack time in case of flight delays, immigration mad house, and a wait for the Heathrow Express. We take a taxi to St. Pancras from the stations where the Heathrow Express ends up, to save the hassle of the tube with luggage. WE made it with 90 minutes to spare which allowed us to purchase sandwiches and two carnets of metro tickets at the departure lounge at St. Pancras. Don't miss the great Eurostar ride in to central Paris. A taxi from Gare du Nord to just about any hotel in central Paris is around 20 euros plus 1 Euro for each bag. go with your original plan to take the train.

Posted by Rebecca
Nashville, TN, USA
645 posts

If at all possible, I would fly into London a day earlier and spend the night at a hotel near the train station, as Swan said earlier. It is a shame to pass through London and not stay a day or two, or even three. There is so much to see there. What is the rest of your trip plan, after you go to Paris? Just curious. Have a great trip.