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Heathrow Express prices slashed to £5.95+ for advance bookings

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For many years, the price of the Heathrow Express train from Paddington Station to the airport was seen as a bit of a joke unless you were spending someone else’s money.

There was a period when 2-4-1 deals would be liberally available over the Summer, but those dried up.  Modest cash discounts or free First Class upgrade offers came and went but few people were convinced.  The number of business travellers using it dropped in the recession and never fully covered.

Heathrow Express

Heathrow Express is now fighting back.

The first move was to make travel free for children under the age of 16I wrote about this here.  This was enough to tempt me back on board twice over the Summer when I couldn’t face a Friday night peak-time drive to the airport.  It is worth noting that this deal is valid in First Class as well as Standard Class.

The latest move is even more aggressive, especially when combined with free child tickets.

Heathrow Express tickets have always been flexible.  A one-way ticket or the outward portion of a return was valid for three days from the date printed on it.

The company has now introduced ‘named day only’ tickets at substantial discounts.

Here are the new prices as outlined on their website here:

Book 90 days in advance :

Standard Class – £6.99 single, £11.90 return

First Class – £9.99 single, £18.00 return

Book 30 days in advance :

Standard Class – £10.75 single, £17.50 return

First Class – £14.75 single, £26.50 return

Book 7 days in advance :

Standard Class – £16.10 single, £26.25 return

First Class – £22.10 single, £39.75 return

Note that – whilst your outbound travel date is NOT flexible – the return portion is.  You can use it on any date within one month of your outbound journey. This means that, even if your plans change by a day and you end up wasting the outbound, your inbound ticket would still be valid.

You can even collect Heathrow Rewards points at the standard rate of 1 per £1 on these fares.

£5.95 – which is what you’d pay each way on a return 90 Day fare – is cheaper than the cash cost of a one way Underground ticket, albeit you pay less if you have an Oyster card or use contactless payment.

£18 return in First Class for an adult and two children, which is the trip I made back in May, seems very reasonable to me even if you must book 90 days in advance.  UberExec, by comparison, which is of comparable comfort is now £60 from West London.

Comments (24)

  • Jonathan says:

    So no one else has to try, the new advance fair doesn’t work with the 20% MasterCard discount or DUO2 £20 saving.

    At £35 return for 2 (for the 30 day advance), it’s still much cheaper than the previous £50 return post-discount rate.

  • Heathrow Express slashes prices ... if you book in advance. - Miles from Blighty says:

    […] HeadforPoints has identified that the Heathrow Express has slashed its advance purchase fares. In fact, what was probably the most expensive 15 minute train journey in the world, has introduced advance purchase fares. Until now, there were walk-up fares, and you could purchase books of tickets, but the saving was small. Buying on the train attracted a £5 penalty. […]

  • Me in London says:

    It seems they have now realised Crossrail is approaching…

  • RIccati says:

    A typo?

    A full price outward HE ticket is valid for 3 MONTHS from the day printed.

    • AndyS says:

      you’re both right!

      How long does my ticket remain valid?
      Validity of tickets bought online

      Single tickets are valid for three months from travel date shown on ticket.
      Return tickets are valid for three months from travel date shown on ticket; once you make the outbound journey, the return is valid for one calendar month.

      Validity of tickets bought from ticket offices or machines

      Single: Valid for three days from date of purchase
      Return: Valid for one calendar month from date of purchase
      Carnet: Valid for 12 Months from date of purchase

  • Andy says:

    What will happen to HX when crossrail opens as crossrail will be more convenient if travelling to the West End, City and Canary wharf.

    • flyforfun says:

      I suppose if you are running really late, you could swap from crossrail at Paddington to HEX and save about 10 minute (theoretically).

      Also, I thought crossrail is only going as far as T123 and T4. For 5 you need to transfer, so some BA pax may not want to change (!) and save a few mins and still take the HEX.

  • oyster says:

    HEX is the single most useless rail line in the world. And it’s shockingly overpriced. And the way Heathrow force it on unwaring tourists is scandalous. I am ashamed to be British when I see the way they advertise and push it as the ‘only’ way to get to central London. I sometimes feel like hanging around in T5 to advise tourists against this rip off, though I’m sure HAL would soon move me on for ‘security’ reasons. Not that Paddington is anywhere near central London, so most people need to pay a tube fare on top anyway.

    It would have to be virtually free before I’d use it, because the time saving versus tube from my house in SE London/Kent ranges from 10 minutes to MINUS 5 minutes. Imagine that, paying extra for a slower journey.

    Did I mention I don’t like HEX?

  • Kevin says:

    Great deal, although they don’t appear when going through the BAEC account if you wanted the 100 avios points.

  • signol says:

    Would this then make it cheaper than Connect?

    • AndyS says:

      Yes, unless you use a railcard and are just going one way . where the connect would be 6.65 against 6.99

      • RIccati says:

        Can you confirm that it’s possible to book Heathrow Connect with a railcard for £6.65 on a week day (Mon-Fri after 9.30/10 am).

        Confused by minimum fare rule for railcards.

        • AndyS says:

          Hmm, I am not entirely sure to be honest. Depends on the railcard. Young Person seems to have minimum before 10am; network has minimum all day and not valid at all before 10 (weekdays only, weekends and b/h no restrictions), senior seems to have limitations in south east “in the peak”, but disabled no limitations! Very confusing!

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