geoffm
Posts: 2082
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 5:58 am

Paddington Check-in Closed

Sun Jan 09, 2005 8:26 am

This is probably old news, but good old a.net search failed (as usual) to find anything.

Anyway, check-in at Paddington station for the Heathrow Express train service to LHR finally closed in the last few weeks. When it was opened, there were numerous check-in desks for probably most of the airlines serving Heathrow. That withered away to just a couple of desks for Star Alliance airlines. Finally, the Sock Shop has ruled supreme and even Star Alliance has closed. Any sock you like can now be bought in the former check-in area. Along with Marks & Spencers, a coffee chain (probably Costalot), etc, etc.

It's a shame but it just wasn't worth it. If you had baggage, you had to check-in there far earlier (2 hours I think) otherwise they'd tell you to check-in at the airport.

Geoff M.
 
TonyBurr
Posts: 1060
Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2001 1:00 pm

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sun Jan 09, 2005 9:36 am

I am really sad to hear this. Checking in at Paddington was great! If you had a late flight you could check in, drop your luggage off and spend the day in the city and then just head out in 15 minutes to the airport. It saved a lot of lines at the airport.

I have not seen this before, so am glad you posted this.

Very sad indeed!
 
buckieboy
Posts: 269
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2004 1:31 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sun Jan 09, 2005 10:17 am

Yes,

Perhaps sad for some, but I would gesture, this is just a question of economics  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

In these PC friendly times, I should state that I avoid LHR as much as possible: not that I dislike the British so much; more that I just find transfers through AMS, FRA & even CDG far more agreable.

Cheers

BB
I'm taking orders from bottles of wine
 
antares
Posts: 1367
Joined: Fri Jun 18, 2004 4:49 pm

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sun Jan 09, 2005 10:28 am

As an occasional user of the Heathrow Express, is there any news as to when it will extend further into London, and whether a station for the final stop has been chosen.
 
MCMAHONSMR
Posts: 316
Joined: Sun Dec 17, 2000 4:21 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sun Jan 09, 2005 11:16 am

Sorry to hear that this service has withered away to nothing. I used it twice . . . Was travelling on late evening flights to DUB and while I only had handbaggage it was very convenient to have boarding pass in hand while sitting on the train. Notably it was a "Star Alliance" boarding pass . . . do they still issue those?

SPM
 
milan320
Posts: 818
Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2005 2:25 pm

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sun Jan 09, 2005 1:24 pm

I'm not surprised. To be honest, of all the times, I've flown out of Heathrow and took the Heathrow Express, I've never seen any of the check-in desks open. Maybe I was unlucky. Seemed like a really good idea to have it though.

/Milan
I accept bribes ... :-)
 
ba97
Posts: 348
Joined: Sat Apr 10, 2004 9:42 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Mon Jan 10, 2005 12:59 am

When I flew AC I lived off that check in. I had a routine down of Heathrow Express, stay at Hilton Paddington. When leaving, I could role out of bed in shorts and check in, go back upstairs and snooze until I needed to throw on clothes and zip to Heathrow already checked in. When I switched to BA it was open for them for a while but after One World vacated, it was replaced by on line check in for me. I still could relax in the morning I was leaving, check in on line and leave my bags at the Hilton until zipping to Heathrow. I still missed the amazing stress relief the Paddington check in offered. Over the last year you could see the neglect of the area. If carriers have not replaced it with a similar set up of on line check in and dedicated lines, it makes one rethink how to manage travel to reduce stress.

The worst thing that could happen now is taking out the Heathrow Express and those prairie dogs from Africa, or what ever they are, on the videos. I would seriously go through problems relaxing without staring at the screen and listening to the music.
there is economy class, business class, first class...then Concorde..pure class
 
trident2e
Posts: 1286
Joined: Sun Dec 28, 2003 3:38 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Mon Jan 10, 2005 1:46 am

Antares - Are you serious mate? It takes us Brits at least 20 years to extend a bit of rail into central London - and that's no joke, the Crossrail project has only just been approved having first been proposed in the early 80s!
 
geoffm
Posts: 2082
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 5:58 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Mon Jan 10, 2005 3:21 am

Antares, apart from the Crossrail scheme already mentioned (Paddington to Stratford in east London), there is a plan to start services to St Pancras (to connect with Eurostar and domestic long distance trains to the north). Whether that comes to fruition will be interesting as the railway line needed to access it is (a) partially unelectrified and (b) badly congested.

Geoff M.
 
antares
Posts: 1367
Joined: Fri Jun 18, 2004 4:49 pm

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Mon Jan 10, 2005 4:33 am

Damn. Sounds like one for the grandchildren to check out.

Narita and Hong Kong remain my favourite airport-rail-city experiences.

If you guys think its bad in London though you ought to check out the rail link in Sydney. That has to be the dumbest thing going, in that it goes onto a city circle link that means you can't even make it across the harbour without fighting your way through two of the most crowded, poorly designed, ill ventilated and over crowded underground station you could want to run into (Wynyard and Town Hall.)
 
User avatar
N328KF
Posts: 5810
Joined: Tue May 25, 2004 3:50 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Mon Jan 10, 2005 5:29 am

Two times I've taken gone through Paddington to LHR. The first time was when BA still had a presence there. That was great. The second time, it was just Star, and I had flown AA. I hated dragging my luggage along with me to the airport. Oh well.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
trintocan
Posts: 2728
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2000 6:02 pm

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Mon Jan 10, 2005 7:21 am

It is sad to hear that but yes, the last few times I went to Paddington (trains from Cardiff terminate there) the area did look very neglected. The impetus for it was lost after 11 September 2001 because US carriers (AA and UA) provided much of the business there and after those events they were not allowed to have off-airport check-in. The other airlines continued for awhile but, once oneworld left, the writing was on the wall.

A new train service to LHR is being started by First Great Western which will stop at intermediate stations (Ealing Broadway, Southall, Hayes & Harlington) on the way to the airport, thus enabling passengers living in those areas to get quicker access to the airport. Heathrow Express will continue its nonstop services. I did not know of plans for the Express trains to travel on to other London terminii.

TrintoCan.
Hop to it, fly for life!
 
flylondon
Posts: 390
Joined: Thu Feb 19, 2004 12:37 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Mon Jan 10, 2005 7:48 am

A new train service to LHR is being started by First Great Western which will stop at intermediate stations (Ealing Broadway, Southall, Hayes & Harlington) on the way to the airport

No its being operated by Heathrow Express under the Heathrow Connect brand which means it will be incredibly expensive.
 
Feroze
Posts: 663
Joined: Fri Dec 17, 2004 11:05 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Mon Jan 10, 2005 8:00 am

Heathrow Connect is a joint FGWL and BAA venture:
http://www.alwaystouchout.com/project/67

Feroze
 
ba97
Posts: 348
Joined: Sat Apr 10, 2004 9:42 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sat Jan 15, 2005 11:15 am

Another train from Paddington?
So from Paddington, there is no benefit to taking Heathrow Connect. You are paying full nickel and you can only get to T4 on the HEx.

so is there a benefit in time from the intermediate stops? for example coming in from Oxford of Maidenhead and hopping of Thames Link
there is economy class, business class, first class...then Concorde..pure class
 
Feroze
Posts: 663
Joined: Fri Dec 17, 2004 11:05 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sat Jan 15, 2005 5:27 pm

Heathrow Connect will not be advertised as a Heathrow train on the departure boards at Paddington station....only at intermediate stop. It is to benefit those especially at Ealing Broadway.

Feroze
 
Feroze
Posts: 663
Joined: Fri Dec 17, 2004 11:05 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sat Jan 15, 2005 6:07 pm

Ba97,
In addition, a new "Airtrack" scheme is proposed...

"Airtrack would run to/from the new station at Terminal 5, currently under construction for the Heathrow Express....Infrastructure work required involves a new chord at Staines to connect the Virginia Water line to the Windsor branch; a possible new station on the north side of the bridge over Staines High St; a new line across Staines Moor and Stanwell Moor, using a former railway alignment, followed by a short tunnel into a new interchange station at Terminal 5."

http://www.alwaystouchout.com/project/60

Regards,

Feroze
 
gilesdavies
Posts: 2281
Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2003 7:51 pm

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sat Jan 15, 2005 7:57 pm

Does the Gatwick Express at Victoria still have check in?

Im not surprised at the check-in being closed at Paddington. I have never travelled on the Heathrow Express, but Paddington is the London Terminus I use to get home from back to Banbury, and when I have used the shops there, the check-in is empty and the Star Alliance staff are usually twiddling their thumbs with boredom.
 
Feroze
Posts: 663
Joined: Fri Dec 17, 2004 11:05 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sat Jan 15, 2005 8:35 pm

Gilesdavies,

The quick answer to your question is.....no!

The check-in usually was empty at Padd. That added to the convenience

Feroze
 
ba97
Posts: 348
Joined: Sat Apr 10, 2004 9:42 am

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sun Jan 16, 2005 6:12 am

Feroze
Thanks for that news
The one thing of 2 that I like about CDG is the TGV connection (the other the hotel between the terminals). With Heathrow getting more direct connections it opens up so much more. Getting a train link to Waterloo, to the Eurostar, Surrey, Oxford... Now...if a connection direct to Gatwick...
The several times I have ended up in downtown Paris without notice but needing to fly home from LHR, I wanted to Eurostar but the link from Waterloo to LHR was painful (Bakerloo, HEx) but taxi to CDG, fly to LHR was worse.


Cheers.
there is economy class, business class, first class...then Concorde..pure class
 
trintocan
Posts: 2728
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2000 6:02 pm

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sun Jan 16, 2005 8:35 am

As I understand the plans for the new train services to LHR, the Heathrow Express services will run to T1/2/3 and then T5 when that is complete while the stopping services run in conjunction with FGWL will stop at T1/2/3 and T4. The thing is that the stopping services are pure FGWL services until Hayes & Harlington but become Heathrow (read BAA) services from there so the boards on the intermediate stops will carry them as LHR services but not those in Paddington. In fact a person in the know could use the stopping services to LHR but will have to pay full Heathrow Express fares and be barred from using TravelCards while anybody travelling to the intermediate stops from Paddington can use TravelCards.

Ultimately BAA is effectively providing direct competition to the Tube as Ealing Broadway is a major Tube stop with both District and Central lines serving it. To use the Tube to LHR from there is a slog as one must change to the Piccadilly at Acton Town, having used the District line to get there.

TrintoCan.
Hop to it, fly for life!
 
N1120A
Posts: 26468
Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2003 5:40 pm

RE: Paddington Check-in Closed

Sun Jan 16, 2005 8:49 am

>for example coming in from Oxford of Maidenhead and hopping of Thames Link<

Thameslink does not go into Paddington, it is the Bedford-Brighton service that crosses London and also goes to Gatwick. It only goes to KX/St. Pancras, Farringdon, Blackfriars, London Bridge, etc., not Paddington. There is Thames Trains which has been replaced by First Great Western Link that goes into Paddington. They are the ones who run the Oxford and Maidenhead services
Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss

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