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Travelling from Gatwick Airport to Kensington

Travelling from Gatwick Airport to Kensington

Gatwick Airport is some 50km south of central London on the border of Surrey and Sussex and is London's second largest airport. The distance is not a problem as there a several ways to travel into the centre of London within an hour.

The Gatwick Express

The Gatwick Express train
The most popular service is the fast train, the Gatwick Express. This runs every 15 minutes from the rail station within the airport and takes 30 minutes to get to Victoria Station in central London. Descending to the platform with lots of baggage can be an issue but you can request help from the station staff. 

London Victoria - Gatwick Airport

Monday to SundayFromUntil
First trains 03:30 04:30  
Then every 15 minutes 05:00 23:45
Last trains 00:01 00:32  

Gatwick Airport - London Victoria

Monday to SundayFromUntil
First trains 04:35 05:20  
Then every 15 minutes 05:50 00:35
Last trains 00:50 01:35  

Tickets can be purchased at Gatwick from the ticket office or the ticket machines just before you go down to the platform and its all clearly signposted.  They accept cash and cards. At the barrier you will also be able to purchase a ticket from a Gatwick Express Customer Service Host who staff the entrance all day. They are clearly identifiable in their bright red jackets and have mobile ticket machines.

Gatwick Express Entrance

The Gatwick Express entrance in the South terminal at the airport

On-board the train, there is a trolley service operates between 06.00 and 20.00 Monday to Saturday and 06.00 until 19.00 on Sundays serving drinks and snacks. 

The Gatwick Express website offers a 10% reduction on Standard Anytime Returns purchased on-line and 10% off all single tickets purchased on line. Avoid paying extra at the train station.

If you are staying in the central areas then you only need to buy a Zone 1 and 2 ticket. For stays of longer than 3 days you should also check out the Oyster Card which is a pay as you go pass to all London transport and will save you money.

On arrival at Victoria, it's final stopping point, you can easily transfer to the tube system and take the Circle and District lines westwards to South Kensington (2 stops), Gloucester Road (3 stops) or High Street Kensington (4 stops).

Map Gatwick Express to Kensington

Tube map showing connections between Victoria and Kensington

You could always get a taxi from Victoria Station.  The taxi stand is clearly marked but usually incurs a wait as many people use this facility at Victoria. The cost to Kensington is dependant on traffic and the number of persons in the cab so allow for a £20 charge.

Victoria Station taxis

Victoria Station in central London showing the taxis

The Thameslink Train
A cheaper, but slower, alternative to the Gatwick Express is the regular train service, the Thameslink.  This operates until 11.30 pm and travels into St Pancras (48 min), London Bridge (29 min) and Blackfriars (37 min). From Blackfriars you can change to the Circle and District line and travel directly to South Kensington (7 stops),  Gloucester Road (8 stops) and High Street Kensington (9 stops). Tube travel time will be around 20 minutes.

A taxi ride into Kensington from Gatwick Airport is expensive and can be very slow if the traffic is heavy.  The only advantage would be ease of travel. The rough cost would be around £80 - £110.  This varies according to the time taken and the number of passengers and baggage on-board.

You could also book a private car with driver. He will meet and greet you and assist wi carrying your luggage to the car. The cost will be around 10% less than a taxi.  If this appeals to you then check out Addison Lee. They are London's  largest private car company and offer a very professional service in good quality vehicles.  Again this may be a slower way to travel into London compared to the Gatwick Express but it is obviously the most effortless mode.

National Express coaches travel from the airport into Victoria. They are modern vehicles complete with wifi.

Last Resort
Sometimes travel connections go wrong and you can get stranded. If for whatever reason none of these service a available then a final resort is to take the Heathrow transfer bus run by National Express (40 mins)  from Gatwick to inside Heathrow Airport and then take the  Piccadilly tube line direct to Kensington (40 mins).

In conclusion, we advise you to use the Gatwick Express train and then a taxi or tube to Kensington.  Total journey time from the airport to your hotel should be around 90 minutes.

For groups of 4 or more, it may be cost effective and simpler to book a private car. This is especially true if young children and lots of luggage are in the equation.

Fare Comparison: Gatwick South to High Street Kensington 

We checked the various costs, ignoring any short term special offers, return ticket deals or off peak travel

Prices as at October 2013

All prices in £GBP

1 adult

2 adults

2 adults and 2 children under 12

Gatwick Express + tube




Addison Lee private car




National Express and tube




Taxi all the way





Gatwick Airport Links

Buy tickets and check prices for the Gatwick Express

First Capital Connect Train

Pre Purchase an Oyster Card or Travelcard

Get a quote or book Addison Lee private car online

National Express Coach - Gatwick to London

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