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Find out about your transport options for getting to UCL from Heathrow airport.

You can find the main ways of travelling to the UCL campus from Heathrow airport below:


London Underground (Tube)

Directions

  1. At the airport, follow signs to London Underground (the Tube). Heathrow has three London Underground stations – one for Terminals 2 and 3 and one each at Terminal 4 and Terminal 5.
  2. Heathrow Terminals 2 and 3 station is between the terminals, which are a few minutes' walk away via pedestrian subway. Heathrow Terminal 4 and Heathrow Terminal 5 underground stations are in the basements of the terminal buildings.
  3. Once you get to the London Underground station and before boarding a train, you will need to purchase a ticket. Fares are considerably cheaper with an Oyster Card, and you’ll certainly make use of your Oyster Card throughout your time in London, so it is probably a good idea to get one straight away. More information can be found on the Transport for London (TfL) website.
  4. You can purchase Oyster Cards from ticket machines or the ticket office and you will need to load some money onto it. You will need to pay a £5 deposit. If you load £10 on to start with, that will be plenty for this journey. If you have a contactless debit card, you can also use it for your journey in the same way as an Oyster.
  5. Tap your Oyster Card on the yellow pad at the ticket barriers, and head for your platform. You will need to look for the Eastbound Piccadilly line (the dark blue line) platform. This is easy as Heathrow is only served by the Piccadilly line.
  6. Once you're at the platform, get on a train and stay on all the way to Russell Square station.
  7. At Russell Square, get off the Tube and make your way to the exit.
  8. Touch your Oyster Card at the barriers when you exit the station.
  9. Russell Square station is a short walk from UCL’s main Gower Street site. Put the address (UCL, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT) into your phone for easy walking directions from the station.

Please note that there are a couple of other Tube stations which are near to UCL, for example, Euston Square (Hammersmith and City, Metropolitan and Circle lines), Warren Street (Northern and Victoria lines) and Euston (Northern and Victoria lines) - but travelling to these stations would involve changing lines. The above route is the most straightforward way of getting to the main UCL campus from Heathrow.

Cost

For up to date Tube fares please visit the Transport for London (TfL) website.

Duration

  • The Tube journey will take roughly 55 minutes.
  • The UCL Gower Street campus is a 10 minute walk from Russell Square station.
  • Total journey time: approximately 65 minutes.

Tips

  • If possible, try to avoid the peak periods of 8.00 to 9.00am and 5.00 to 7.00pm as the Tube is very busy during this time.
  • Bear in mind that you may have to carry your luggage up/down some stairs.
  • The Tube starts at around 5.00am and closes around midnight, with the exception of some lines on the weekend that run 24 hours. If you will be arriving very early in the morning or late at night, check the Travel for London (TfL) website for exact times to make sure the Tube is running. Visit the TfL webpages to plan your journey.

Heathrow Express train

Directions

  1. If you’re arriving at Terminal 2 or Terminal 3, follow signs to the Heathrow Express station.
  2. If you’re arriving at Terminal 5, the station is at basement level and reached by lift or escalator - follow the signs for Heathrow Express station.
  3. If you’re arriving at Terminal 4, take the free transfer to Heathrow Terminals 2 and 3 (departures every 15 minutes, travel time four minutes) and follow the signs for Heathrow Express station.
  4. Once you’re at the station, and before you board a train, you will need to purchase your ticket. You can do this online beforehand by visiting the Heathrow Express website.
  5. You will then need to board the train to Paddington station.
  6. Once you get to Paddington, you will need to take the London Underground (the Tube) the rest of the way. Look for signs for the London Underground at the station.
  7. Before boarding a train, you will need to purchase a ticket. Fares are considerably cheaper with an Oyster Card, and you’ll certainly make use of your Oyster Card throughout your time in London, so it is probably a good idea to get one straight away. More information can be found on the Transport for London (TfL) website.
  8. You can purchase Oyster Cards from ticket machines or the ticket office and you will need to load some money onto it. You will need to pay a £5 deposit. If you load £10 on to start with, that will be plenty for this journey. If you have a contactless debit card, you can also use it for your journey in the same way as an Oyster.
  9. Tap your Oyster Card on the yellow pad at the ticket barriers, and head for your platform.
  10. You need to look for the Eastbound platform for either the Hammersmith & City (pink line) or the Circle line (yellow line). You can take either of these two lines.
  11. Once you're at the platform, board a Tube and stay on until you get to Euston Square station.
  12. At Euston Square, get off the Tube and make your way to the exit.
  13. Touch your Oyster card at the barriers when you exit the station.
  14. Euston Square station is located on Gower Street, where UCL’s main campus is found (UCL, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT). Walk for two minutes down the road and you will have arrived.

Please note that there are many trains departing from Heathrow Airport for other areas of central London, which may have different fares. These guidelines provide information on how to reach the UCL main campus, but you are advised to plan your journey beforehand as other train routes may also suit your travel plans and bring you closer to your own final destination.

Cost

For up to date Tube fares please visit the Transport for London (TfL) website.

Duration

  • The Heathrow Express journey takes 15 minutes from Terminals 2 and 3, and 21 minutes if you board at Terminal 5.
  • The Tube journey takes 12 minutes.
  • The UCL Gower Street campus is a 2 minute walk from Euston Square Station.
  • Total journey time: Approximately 30 minutes. 

Tips

  • If possible, try to avoid the peak periods of 8.00 to 9.00am and 5.00 to 7.00pm as the Tube is very busy during this time.
  • Bear in mind that you may have to carry your luggage up/down some stairs.
  • The first Heathrow Express train is around 5.00am and the last one is just before midnight. If you will be arriving very early in the morning or late at night, check the Heathrow Express website to make sure it is running.
  • The Tube starts at around 5.00am and closes around midnight, with the exception of some lines on the weekend that run 24 hours. If you will be arriving very early in the morning or late at night, check the Travel for London (TfL) website for exact times to make sure the Tube is running. Visit the TfL webpages to plan your journey.

Taxi

Directions

  • Taxis stop at the ranks outside each Heathrow terminal. You just need to go outside, approach the driver and provide the address of your destination (for UCL - Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT)
  • Alternatively, you can book a private hire minicab which will offer a fixed price to your destination. All private hire minicabs will need to be pre-booked online or by telephone and the drivers should meet you from your flight in the arrivals area, but confirm this with them at the time of booking. A pre-booked minicab can be significantly cheaper than taking a taxi from the ranks at the airport.
  • Transport for London (TfL) has a list of suggested mini-cab firms.

Cost

  • This varies depending on the taxi company, the time of day you travel and how much traffic there is. Roughly, you can expect your journey to cost between £50-£90 but this could be significantly higher if there are delays or heavy traffic.
  • If you book a taxi in advance, they should provide a fixed quote for your journey and this could be cheaper than taking a taxi from the ranks outside the airport.

Duration

This varies depending on traffic, but it should take approximately 60 minutes.