The Best Way to Get from Southend Airport to London (2023)
As you plan your first trip to London, there are a million decisions to make and things to learn. You need to decide how long you’re going to visit, where you’ll stay, and what you’ll do. You might be budget-conscious and be looking for ways to save. Heck, you even need to decide which airport you’re flying in to – there are six in the London area!
One thing you might forget to figure out is an important one: how to get from the airport to London, at whichever airport you will arrive. Some people fly into London City Airport, which is a good alternative compared to other area airports – but as it’s your first trip, you still might have questions.
If you’re putting the final touches on your London itinerary, know you’re flying into City Airport, and are curious about how to get from the airport to London, you’ve come to the right place. Below is a guide to London’s various airports and a breakdown of your options for getting from City Airport to London.
London Area Airports Explained
When it comes to cities, London is tied for the most airports in the world (along with New York City). It has a total of six airports. London airports sit in strategic parts of the city, and each serves different purposes, which I’ll cover in this section.
- London Heathrow is London’s largest aviation hub and sits only 14 miles west of central London. Depending on which method you choose, it takes 15-55 minutes to reach Central London. I have a guide for how to get from Heathrow to London, if you’re flying into that airport instead.
- London Gatwick is 30 miles south of London and takes 30 minutes to reach Central London. If you’re comparing flights into Gatwick, check out my guide.
- London Stansted is 42 miles northeast of central London. It takes about 50 minutes to reach Central London; if you’re comparing flights to Stansted, I have a guide to your travel options there too.
- London Luton is 28 miles north of London, and despite only having a single runway, Luton is one of London’s busiest airports and covers primarily commercial flights within Europe. You can get to Central London in as little as 25 minutes, and I have a guide if you’re considering flights into Luton instead.
- London City Airport is a slightly smaller airport and sits just 10 miles east of central London; you can reach Central London from City Airport in just 20-25 minutes. I also have a guide in this series for getting from City to Central London.
- London Southend is the furthest at 42 miles from central London and takes 50+ minutes to travel from. While it is small, Southend has become quite an important hub for London’s aviation. It mainly uses budget airlines to fly to and from short-haul destinations across Europe, mainly in France and Spain.
Now let’s dive into the specifics of getting from Southend Airport to Central London – which is what you really want to know!
How to Get from Southend Airport to London
Southend Airport is 42 miles from the center of London; it’s the furthest of the airports in the London area from the central part of the city. Since Southend Airport is smaller and less busy, there are fewer ways to get from London to the airport.
One way to travel from Southend to London is by train. Greater Anglia line operates direct train services from Southend Airport to Liverpool Street Station (close to the Shoreditch). The journey takes around 50 minutes, with up to six services an hour during peak times. Tickets start from just £20.10.
You can also reach the airport via local buses or coaches. The X30 runs between Southend to Stansted Airport; you’ll find the bus stops just a short walk from the main terminal. The journey time is about 1 hour 40 minutes (the X30 has 23 stops along the way), and prices range between £10-16 for one-way tickets.
You can also book a taxi to get to the city. Andrews Taxis is Southend Airport’s official taxi service. Their offices sit in front of the terminal building, and they charge approximately £110 for a ride to Central London. The journey time is about one hour.
The Best Way to Travel Between London & Southend
The best way to travel from London to Southend is via the National Rail with the Greater Anglia line. As you probably guessed from the options I listed, the train is the cheapest alternative, and it is also the fastest way to reach the airport. That seems like a pretty simple choice, right?
Have any questions about how to travel from Southend Airport to London? Let me know in the comments below!