I fly a lot out of Heathrow, and generally, getting to the airport in the quickest amount of time is crucial, meaning I can either spend more time at home, or in an airport lounge, instead of in a bus/taxi for the hour’s drive to the airport. Here’s a review of the Heathrow Express, the quickest way from Central London (Paddington) to Heathrow.
There are Heathrow Express trains leaving every 15 minutes, thus suiting all flight times. The trains also go to all 4 LHR terminals (2, 3, 4 & 5), though tunnels you have to walk through at the airport end to get to your desired terminal seem to stretch on forever. I would allow at least 15 minutes for this walk, which, annoyingly, doubles your journey time.
The pricing is also very steep. Singles start at £22 through online booking, with returns starting at £36. You can’t use an Oyster card for payment, and if you wait to buy tickets on the train, expect to pay a lot more. That said, the trains always seem to be relatively full.
Carriage Classes and Amenities
All classes on the train have access to 4G-enabled WiFi and at-seat power sockets for chargers, or you could buy a Business-First ticket on the train, which will set you back about 50% more than an standard class seat, and offers a separate, more spacious carriage (3-across instead of 4), as well as free reading material. This fare essentially just guarantees you a seat on busy services, and I can’t really justify paying ~50% more for a 15 minute service. However, if you have Star Alliance Gold Status, you can get a free upgrade to Business-First, which is definitely worth doing for no extra cost.
Heathrow Express is not for everyone. Its fares price out a lot of budget-conscious travellers, and the pain of hauling bags around to get to/from Paddington, as well as on/off the train and through the tunnels to the terminal may mean you’re just as well off getting a cab/Uber. An Uber from London to Heathrow would cost ~£35, and could prove a lot less hassled than getting the Heathrow Express, seeing as an Uber is door-to-door. However, if Paddington is easy for you to get to, I would definitely recommend Heathrow Express as a viable and comfortable transit to Heathrow.