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Transfer: Southampton—London (incl. LHR/LGW) train, car, other?


jedco
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2 hours ago, John Bull said:

Assuming your HGI is at T2

This is a very important clarification required. I think @barbarapga said at one point near Heathrow, which might imply the one at Hatton Cross (which is simply called HGI London Heathrow Airport), and advice might change then. Previous suggestions are based on staying at the HGI London Heathrow Terminals 2 & 3, which is on, rather than near, the airport.

 

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5 hours ago, Cotswold Eagle said:
7 hours ago, John Bull said:

Assuming your HGI is at T2 ...

This is a very important clarification required. ...

 

Yes - I had merely assumed that context from the question in the post, but actually you're both absolutely right that this question needs to be asked.

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3 hours ago, Globaliser said:

 

 

Yes - I had merely assumed that context from the question in the post, but actually you're both absolutely right that this question needs to be asked.

Thanks for looking out for me!  I’m staying at T2.

Following directions..I will walk through exit/car park..

Enter Arrivals at T2 and look for the Celebrity agent.

 

Interestingly…Celebrity agent didn’t know which Terminal the bus left from.

I told him that I would check with the folks on cruise critic. 
Thanks again,

Barbara

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15 hours ago, barbarapga said:

Thanks for looking out for me!  I’m staying at T2.

Following directions..I will walk through exit/car park..

Enter Arrivals at T2 and look for the Celebrity agent.

 

Interestingly…Celebrity agent didn’t know which Terminal the bus left from.

I told him that I would check with the folks on cruise critic. 
Thanks again,

Barbara

 

For every LHR to Southampton cruise-line transfer that I've driven, passengers have been picked up at all  live Heathrow terminals. You already know that my experience is now history, but I can think of no reason why that would change.

 

Celebrity's port agent has been Intercruises, but I don't know if that's still the case.

I phoned them today, and was told that no, they don't serve Celebrity - only P&O, Cunard and Princess. But I think that's just for their "cruiseconnect" coach service, which provides domestic pick-ups across the UK for travel from home-town to port. That was reinforced by their suggestion that I try Evesway - not a port agent, but a coach operator offering similar home-town to port transfers 🙄.

 

So I'm hitting the same brick wall as you.

If the port agent is indeed Intercruises, and if you've not phoned them, their Florida phone number is

 +1 305-373-5011

 

But I reckon your best bet is to ask on CC's Celebrity forum, or on the RollCall of one or two recently-returned Southampton or Dover sailings. 

 

Or save that grief and a stack of cash by booking with https://book.nationalexpress.com/ at about £20 pp direct from Heathrow central bus station (5-minute walk from HGI) to Southampton coach station (15 minute walk or £10 max. taxi hop to City Cruise Terminal)

 

JB 🙂

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I read through some of the more recent pages and came out more confused, but maybe I'm over thinking this. Our party will be two adults and a 12 year old and our trip is next summer (2024).

 

1. We fly into Gatwick and then need to get to Gospel Oak, Tufnell Park, or Kentish Town stop. All three are roughly the same walking distance to our final destination. Does one have a more direct route from Gatwick? Do I buy the tickets in advance? Does it matter which website/app I use? This could be tricky given we won't know the exact time we will land, get our luggage, clear customs, etc. 

 

2. We will need to get from one of those same three stops to Southampton for our cruise.  Does one have a more direct route to Southampton on a Sunday morning? Do I buy the tickets in advance? Does it matter which website/app I use?

 

3. For general travel within the area while we are in London, I assume that we would just buy tickets/swipe our card when we are going somewhere versus buying tickets in advance. Would that be an accurate assumption?

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1. Gatwick and Kentish Town are both on the Thameslink rail line, however you will need to change trains at St Pancras International. Catch any northbound Thameslink train from Gatwick (final destination usually Bedford or Cambridge), get off at St Pancras then wait on the same platform for a train that stops at Kentish Town, which is the next station (final destination usually St Albans or Luton).

 

2. To get to Waterloo, catch a Northern line tube train from Tufnell Park. You want a southbound Charing Cross branch train, not a Bank one.

 

3. For both the above journeys, and for all your travel within London, it is easiest to use a contactless debit/credit card or Apple/Google Pay to touch in and out at the barriers for each journey you make. Buying paper tickets tends to be more expensive.

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1 Use a contactless bank card (or phone or smart watch) to open the ticket barriers at Gatwick.  Use the same devide on the ticket barrier at Kentish Town.  Don't buy anything advance or use any app.

2 You do need a paper ticket for the rail journey from Waterloo to Southampton.  If you are able to select the exact time now, you can buy an "advance ticket" (it's a particular ticket type, not just any old ticket bought ahead of time) which is cheaper than the walk up fare.  But you can only travel on the train you book

3 To emphasise.  Use a contactless card/phone/watch to cover any travel on London's transport network.  Buying a paper ticket for travel within London is always much more expensive.  (And isn't possible at all on buses)

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6 minutes ago, njkruzer said:

I was told each person needed their own but weren't traveling with a child.

Each person definitely needs their own, but it's worth knowing that each device or card is treated uniquely.  So, for example, a phone and the card that it "contains" can each be used by one person - so two people in total.

But I was wondering about child fares.

Edited by fruitmachine
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A child (which for London transport is age 11 to 15) can travel half fare, but to do this they would need an oyster card.  I don't normally recommend this as it costs £7 to obtain (and you don't get it back).  But if you are making lots of journeys with the child, then buy one as the savings will make it worthwhile.  You need to find a staff member by the ticket machine who will add the discount onto the card.  (It lasts for two weeks, so if you visit London again in the future, the child discount flag will have expired)

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A further complication with a child is you cannot apply the child discount for Oyster at Gatwick.  It has to be a station managed by Transport for London (and Gatwick isn't).  That swings the balance and it may be better to go to the manned ticket window and buy a paper ticket for the initial journey into London.  Explain to the ticket agent at the railway station (it's attached to the airport terminal) where you are going and any other travel you plan on arrival day and they will sell the cheapest fare - which may be a groupsave travelcard (but the agent will know best)

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2 hours ago, Island2Dweller said:

A further complication with a child is you cannot apply the child discount for Oyster at Gatwick.  It has to be a station managed by Transport for London (and Gatwick isn't).

 

What happens if the child uses an Oyster for the journey in to London before the Young Visitor discount is set on the Oyster, and the discount is set later on the same day? Will the daily cap simply be applied at the 50% rate, even though the Gatwick --> London journey was initially charged at adult rate? Or will the system ring-fence that journey at adult rate and only apply the 50% cap to travel made after the discount was set?

 

There's one small point of detail to mention about Kentish Town, which I think probably will not concern Ronaldo807 but they may see it mentioned: At the moment, Kentish Town Underground station is closed. It closed in late June 2023 for "up to a year" because the escalators are being replaced and other refurbishment work is being done. However, this does not affect Kentish Town National Rail station, which is the station involved in the route from Gatwick that gumshoe958 described.

 

Also, in relation to the journey to Waterloo: I have a suspicion that neither Kentish Town Tube nor Tufnell Park Tube have step-free access, and I am fairly confident that the Northern Line at Waterloo does not. All this may be a consideration for travelling to Waterloo with luggage.

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2 hours ago, Globaliser said:

 

What happens if the child uses an Oyster for the journey in to London before the Young Visitor discount is set on the Oyster, and the discount is set later on the same day? Will the daily cap simply be applied at the 50% rate, even though the Gatwick --> London journey was initially charged at adult rate? Or will the system ring-fence that journey at adult rate and only apply the 50% cap to travel made after the discount was set?

 

There's one small point of detail to mention about Kentish Town, which I think probably will not concern Ronaldo807 but they may see it mentioned: At the moment, Kentish Town Underground station is closed. It closed in late June 2023 for "up to a year" because the escalators are being replaced and other refurbishment work is being done. However, this does not affect Kentish Town National Rail station, which is the station involved in the route from Gatwick that gumshoe958 described.

 

Also, in relation to the journey to Waterloo: I have a suspicion that neither Kentish Town Tube nor Tufnell Park Tube have step-free access, and I am fairly confident that the Northern Line at Waterloo does not. All this may be a consideration for travelling to Waterloo with luggage.

I didn't realize the underground was closed so thank you for pointing that out. How far is the rail station and the underground?

 

Would it be better to take a taxi/uber to Waterloo?

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9 hours ago, Ronaldo807 said:

I didn't realize the underground was closed so thank you for pointing that out. How far is the rail station and the underground?

 

Would it be better to take a taxi/uber to Waterloo?


The tube isn’t closed, just Kentish Town station. You can still use Tufnell Park if that’s convenient. 
 

But yes, with luggage and a child in tow it may be simpler just to cab or Uber it to Waterloo.

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24 minutes ago, kckitties said:

We are 2 senior ladies arriving at LHR Terminal 2 on October 20 at 05:55 am.  What is the best way to travel to Comfort Inn Victoria?

 

Thanks in advance!

Any particular difficulties with hauling your luggage around for a bit and hopping on and off subways?

Edited by d9704011
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43 minutes ago, kckitties said:

We are 2 senior ladies arriving at LHR Terminal 2 on October 20 at 05:55 am.  What is the best way to travel to Comfort Inn Victoria?

 

Thanks in advance!


I rarely recommend National Express coaches for journeys between Heathrow and central London as the train or tube is normally faster and more convenient.

 

But in your case, your hotel is just around the corner from the Victoria coach station so it’s the easiest way unless you prefer a cab (which would be quicker but cost a lot more).

 

Coaches run at least every 30 minutes from the Heathrow Central bus station, which is a short walk from T2. Booking in advance online is advisable, and during the booking process you can add a ‘Change & Go’ upgrade for £5 which allows you to use any coach within 12 hours of the one you booked, if there’s room. 

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On 8/6/2023 at 1:35 AM, Ronaldo807 said:

I didn't realize the underground was closed so thank you for pointing that out. How far is the rail station and the underground?

 

We don't know the date of your cruise, but as I said, I suspect that this will not affect you because you're asking about "next summer (2024)". I mentioned it in case you see references elsewhere to that Underground station being closed - if you do, don't panic.

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This is a UK train transfer question (albeit not from London).  We are spending a few days in Bath prior to our cruise this Fall and are planning on taking the train from Bath to Southampton.  That would be on South Western Railways.  How necessary is it to purchase in advance?  does the price increase much?  If advisable to purchase in advance, is there a way to do e-tickets if live in US because it does not appear as if I can register an account with them from the US whcih I believe is required for e-tickets.  Any information is appreciated.

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26 minutes ago, cruise2relax said:

We are spending a few days in Bath prior to our cruise this Fall and are planning on taking the train from Bath to Southampton.  That would be on South Western Railways.  How necessary is it to purchase in advance?  does the price increase much?

 

It isn't necessary to buy a ticket in advance, because UK trains generally do not sell out in the usual sense and you should always be able to buy a ticket for immediate travel.

 

However, it can be cheaper to buy in advance. Just as a random test, a walk-up fare for travel this afternoon would be £32.70. But the cheapest advance purchase fares for as far ahead as you can currently book (27 October) are £12.50. (Note that cheap advance purchase fares do not always go on sale when the train itself goes on sale.)

 

26 minutes ago, cruise2relax said:

If advisable to purchase in advance, is there a way to do e-tickets if live in US because it does not appear as if I can register an account with them from the US whcih I believe is required for e-tickets.

 

I think that a few people have reported problems with South Western Railway sometimes not accepting non-UK addresses. But one workaround is that you should be able to buy the same ticket from pretty much any other train operating company, at exactly the same price; and there are plenty of them that will happily accept a non-UK address. They should all do e-tickets in exactly the same way.

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1 minute ago, Globaliser said:

 

It isn't necessary to buy a ticket in advance, because UK trains generally do not sell out in the usual sense and you should always be able to buy a ticket for immediate travel.

 

However, it can be cheaper to buy in advance. Just as a random test, a walk-up fare for travel this afternoon would be £32.70. But the cheapest advance purchase fares for as far ahead as you can currently book (27 October) are £12.50. (Note that cheap advance purchase fares do not always go on sale when the train itself goes on sale.)

 

 

I think that a few people have reported problems with South Western Railway sometimes not accepting non-UK addresses. But one workaround is that you should be able to buy the same ticket from pretty much any other train operating company, at exactly the same price; and there are plenty of them that will happily accept a non-UK address. They should all do e-tickets in exactly the same way.

Thank you very much.  It is October 29th we need so I will check in a few days as that advanced fare is worth it.  Also check out other line for ticket purchase.

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3 hours ago, cruise2relax said:

It is October 29th we need so I will check in a few days as that advanced fare is worth it.

 

If you don't see the cheap fares when booking opens, then just leave it for a while and check back to see whether any Advance fares have been loaded for your date. £32.70 should be a ceiling on how much you have to pay, however late you book, so don't feel pressured into buying a ticket at that fare.

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On 8/7/2023 at 1:22 PM, Globaliser said:

 

If you don't see the cheap fares when booking opens, then just leave it for a while and check back to see whether any Advance fares have been loaded for your date. £32.70 should be a ceiling on how much you have to pay, however late you book, so don't feel pressured into buying a ticket at that fare.

One more question since you have been so very helpful.  I am noting that the weekend (saturday and sunday) of October 28/29 is showing no direct trains at all.  The trains they show have either 1 or 2 changes and are 2+ hours.  I checked other weekends in case it was a weekday versus weekend thing, but alas it is not.  It appears to be just the weekend we will be there,  Am I missing something?  Will they be scheduled later?

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