7E72004 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 3587 posts, RR: 2 Posted (9 years 1 week 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 3182 times:
I am seriously considering going to London next spring/summer and am starting to look at various airlines, and options. Can i get some information/advice on what airlines i should take to London and what London airport i should fly into? I am/would probably be leaving from IND. thanks and cheers
The next generation of aircraft is just around the corner!
NoelG From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (9 years 1 week 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 3167 times:
In terms of the best airport, to be honest you've got to pick the best of a bad bunch! Any will involve at least a half hour transfer into the city, LGW is quieter though and imo a better airport to come into. There is a train straight to central London and from the states you have a good choice of DL/NW/US/CO/AA/BA.
LHR is a heap, overcrowded and looking very tired for the most part. They have been renovating parts of it but it is always really packed and to be honest I hate having to fly from there. From the states it's probably BA/AA/UA. It is slightly closer to the city than LGW and has a rail link (The Heathrow Express) but it's very expensive compared to the regular train. I would prefer LGW just for the factor of it being a more modern, quieter airport. I think LHR is about half an hour from central London.
STN is probably the best airport, but you will struggle for flights from the US as it's LCC zone!
You could always fly into MAN, it's at the other end of the country but is a much better airport and it's a 3 hour train ride to London. This way you get to see more of the country, the train takes you through some beautiful countryside. BHX is only an hour and a half by train to London, and again is a nice, if smaller airport. You can get a CO 757 from EWR-BHX.
DeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Reply 3, posted (9 years 1 week 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 3120 times:
While Heathrow is busy do consider the amount of vacation and charter traffic going through Gatwick as the terminal can get very crowded with long lines.
Are you flying First, Business, or Steerage? That makes a difference in which one you select. If flying premium then Virgin or BA are the way to go. If cattle class is your choice then pick your poisin amongst the various carriers.
"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
ACDC8 From Canada, joined Mar 2005, 7643 posts, RR: 35
Reply 6, posted (9 years 1 week 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 3003 times:
Quoting 7E72004 (Reply 5): Thanks for the info...i have never left the US (except to go to Canada) and i want to expand my horizons
Since you've never left the US (except to visit us Canucks ) I would strongly recommend you flying with BA or VS into LHR. The reasoning behind this is because it will be your first trip abroad and I find that flying on a foreign carrier is always a bit more interesting then flying a hometown carrier. It's something new and you get immediate interaction to another country/culture.
I would recommend flying into LHR, despite it's reputation for being a "heap" and passenger unfriendly (even though you'll get used to it) because it is a fascinating airport and it'll give you an opportunity to see aircraft and airlines that you have never seen before and won't see at LGW or STN.
That's how I would do it if it were my first time.
BTW, BA may be your easiest bet because I'm sure you can get an AA flight out of IND and cnx onto BA.
AirScoot From United States of America, joined May 2005, 688 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (9 years 1 week 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 2997 times:
I make the trip once a year. Leaving out of the east coast I do my best to take the day flight (departs 8-9am arrives 9-10pm). I noticed in your profile it shows IND as your home city - I don't know if they'd have any connections to make it though. I'd suggest it since you don't have to have the dreaded "is my hotel ready yet" wait.
With the arrival at LHR in the evening I've noticed that customs and immigration aren't too bad since a good amount of the longhaul have already come and gone (last time I think the only non-EU flight in line with us was a flight from Dubai).
If it's the overnight flight, I'd say go into LGW. Much less hassle.
I'm going back myself in February.. can't wait!
As far as airline - I'd suggest BA or AA for LHR, and AA or CO for LGW.
TinkerBelle From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (9 years 1 week 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 2968 times:
Quoting ACDC8 (Reply 6): The reasoning behind this is because it will be your first trip abroad and I find that flying on a foreign carrier is always a bit more interesting then flying a hometown carrier. It's something new and you get immediate interaction to another country/culture.
Good point. I always fly either BA or VS (actually only flew them once) and I love when the F/A's come around asking 'Tea or Coffee" with that British accent. The British accent itself is worth flying BA or VS.
Quoting ACDC8 (Reply 6): BTW, BA may be your easiest bet because I'm sure you can get an AA flight out of IND and cnx onto BA.
You can fly CO too and they'll get you to VS.
Quoting NoelG (Reply 1): Any will involve at least a half hour transfer into the city
I thought the 'Heathrow Express' will get you to downtown London in 15 minutes from terminal 1 (at least that's how they advertise it)?
AC787 From Canada, joined Mar 2005, 337 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (9 years 1 week 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 2932 times:
Airplane nut and first time to London, its a simple choice, Heathrow all the way. I went to London for my first time this summer and made sure I went through Heathrow.. The amount of planes and airlines really is awseome . Taking the subway from LHR to downtown london was rlly simple and fast.
Whatever airline you choose (Thank God Ryanair is not an option here), I bet you'll have fun. I absolutely love London. There's just something unique about the city but heck, I live in Sacramento so it figures
Vegasplanes From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 778 posts, RR: 2
Reply 17, posted (9 years 1 week 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 2896 times:
Quoting 7E72004 (Reply 5): Thanks for the info...i have never left the US (except to go to Canada) and i want to expand my horizons Smile
If you really want to expand your international horizons, try KL or NW straight into AMS.
Seriously though, I flew AA to LGW, back to US through LHR back in May, both were fine airports, no problems at either. If flying Coach, best bet is the flight time and price that suits you. I believe AA offers the most non-stop destinations of the USA airlines to LHR or LGW.
LHR on AA from:
LGW on AA from:
Also lot of secondary markets served a few time weekly by BA or VS:
Jacobin777 From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 14968 posts, RR: 60
Reply 18, posted (9 years 1 week 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 2862 times:
if you are flying from IND, fly to either ORD or JFK and take either BA/AA/UA...but I would go with BA because of the following.....
Quoting ACDC8 (Reply 6): Since you've never left the US (except to visit us Canucks Big grin ) I would strongly recommend you flying with BA or VS into LHR. The reasoning behind this is because it will be your first trip abroad and I find that flying on a foreign carrier is always a bit more interesting then flying a hometown carrier. It's something new and you get immediate interaction to another country/culture.
remember however, unless you add BA miles within 3 years, your miles expire, with AA however, they last a long time!
Gilesdavies From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2003, 3036 posts, RR: 2
Reply 19, posted (9 years 1 week 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 2848 times:
I might sound like a broken record...
But I would go US Airways.
If you fly via their Charlotte Hub connections are really easy and a delight to connect at.
Also you will get an A330 with US Airways to LGW on both their PHL and CLT services. You get 33-35 inches of legroom, the seats in Y are real comfy and you also have the advantage of the on-demand seat back TV's.
The service is nothing to shout about, but the aircrafts are great.
Also Gatwick is by far your easiest airport in London to fly into if coming from the US, you will clear passport control and baggage reclaim quickly and regardless of what people say about LGW it never feels as crowded or as claustrophobic as LHR.
The railway station is a 2 min walk from the arrivals hall, and will get you to London Victoria railway staion in 30ish mins and is far more central and convenient than London Paddington where the Heathrow traims terminate.
Another real alternative could be Birmingham... Continental operate two 757 services a day from EWR. The airport is far smaller than any London airport and so easy to get through. To be honest Birmingham is over 100miles from London but the railway station is right on the airports doorstep and are 2-3 trains an hour to London usually taking about 1.5hrs. If you wanted to explore other places like Stratford-On-Avon (Shakespeares home town) this is only 20-30mins drive from the airport and also you can get direct trains to Oxford from the airport.
Richardw From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 3754 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (9 years 1 week 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 2849 times:
Fly into LHR with an arrival time of about 10am and you'll get to see lots of airliners from many of the world's airlines. It is quite a fantastic sight. Lots of BA B744s & B777s. SQ B744s, QF B744s, TG B744s. VS, AA, UA , AC, CX, Air NZ aircraft.
Xpat From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 634 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (9 years 1 week 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 2814 times:
If you want inexpensive (at least when I traveled) and basic but solid service try Icelandair. Granted, you'll have a 1-1.5 hour layover in Keflavik (tiny airport) but that just adds to the adventure. As people have mentioned above, fly into LHR despite the "mad house" atmosphere it is a very exciting airport. And then catch the "Heathrow Express" to Paddington station in 15 minutes and you're all set. There are some great B&B's and small hotels around Paddington. Quite a central place to stay.
Icelandair's US Gateways are:
The only thing we have to fear is the sky falling on our heads. -Asterix
7E72004 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 3587 posts, RR: 2
Reply 23, posted (9 years 1 week 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 2752 times:
I would like to try an international/foreign carrier...no offense to the US carriers, i would liketo try something new I would just have to fly a US carrier from IND to one of the hubs WHen is the best time to go...spring/summer??
The next generation of aircraft is just around the corner!
TinkerBelle From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (9 years 1 week 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 2734 times:
Quoting 7E72004 (Reply 23): would like to try an international/foreign carrier...
In that case, you might wanna consider VS. BA is alright too but VS have the best IFE out there (The IVOD). You can pause, rewind or forward your movies not to mention VS's sexy F/A's in red as compared to BA's dull blue uniforms (not that it matters much though)...lol. Ooh, another thing......if you're flying steerage, you get free alcohol on international carriers whereas US carriers will charge you $5 for a beer.
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: I just did my first UK visit last month. Wonderful visit! I just wish our dollar was worth more. Being a wedding, I insisted on finding a nonstop goin
: Took BA TPA-LGW. Flew steerage. Seats were a tight fit..service was excellent. Arrived around 8am--quick trip through customs and we were on our way.
: Yeah, that is so true! Whenever I get to the states I prefer a US carrier, so I could easely shift over to the US english and get adapted again to th
: I too was in the same boat as you until this past August. I live in Miami (MIAA) and I absolutely did NOT want to take an overnight flight, so I flew
: I'd be willing to try that, but we did an overnight (7:30pm EDT departure, 8:00am BST arrival). Popped an Ambien as dinner rolled our way. Finished e
: Or in retrospect, the pound worth less
: I probably won't be flying first class as i don't have enough miles or simply cannot afford the luxury It would be nice but at least i would be able t
: How about flying Aer Lingus if you want to fly a foreign carrier, they offer excellent connections through Dublin to London and also Ireland has an a
: Since you are flying across the pond for the first time, my opinion is simple and based on experience: 1. BA--> They have the most consitent and relia
: While summer is the best season for London, it also is the busiest season for travellers, leading to high airfares, high hotel prices and cramped (tou
: It seems to me that you can't pre-reserve a specific seat when flying coach in BA and VS. Is this correct? For me, being able to pick my seat at the t