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Old 03-09-2018, 12:09 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC area
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Is this too risky? We have a 4PM flight from Heathrow to Washington, but will be in Paris on that morning. It seems like you could easily take an early Eurostar train and have plenty of time to get to Heathrow.

Researching online shows many people suggests flying direct to Heathrow, but I think I would prefer to take the train.

Has anybody done this? If so, how much time would you allow?

Thank you.
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Old 03-09-2018, 12:45 PM
 
Location: Phoenix, AZ > Raleigh, NC
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Do it the day before and that ends the potential problem.

Same thing as before a cruise. ALWAYS fly in the day before.
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Old 03-09-2018, 01:17 PM
 
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I've done it several times. Just take an early train, leave your bags in left luggage at St Pancras, and spend some hours in London. It's a 1 hour tube ride to Heathrow or a bit quicker if you do tube to Paddington and the Heathrow Express. If you have to check bags and you're flying BA economy, allow a ton of slack time between the queue to check your bags and the queue for airport security. I never check bags. Like any airport, security is hit or miss. Sometimes, you go right through. Other times, it's an hour.
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Old 03-12-2018, 09:30 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
I've done it several times. Just take an early train, leave your bags in left luggage at St Pancras, and spend some hours in London. It's a 1 hour tube ride to Heathrow or a bit quicker if you do tube to Paddington and the Heathrow Express. If you have to check bags and you're flying BA economy, allow a ton of slack time between the queue to check your bags and the queue for airport security. I never check bags. Like any airport, security is hit or miss. Sometimes, you go right through. Other times, it's an hour.
I was in Heathrow yesterday for a layover. I didn't check either. It took a long time. The security is very strict there - which I guess is a good thing - but they are very thorough so it takes a long time. They were looking through everyone's bags.
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Old 03-12-2018, 10:16 PM
 
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why exactly would you prefer to take the train? If you're just going from paris to london or vice versa the train wins every time. If its to connect to another flight you'd actually have to be INSANE to take the train.

Book a flight, check bags straight through (as long as it isn't BA who refuse to do this on separate PNRs now) and just relax.

Train you're going to have to arrive, then get out of london at rush hour (not TOO bad since most traffic will be coming the other way) by car. If you're going to try by tube it will be hell at rush hour.

All in all, as a londoner, and someone that lives not far from st Pancras and travels to heathrow a LOT, I will repeat again, you would be INSANE to take the train just to connect to a flight at heathrow.

In fact your best route if you insisted on the insanity, would be taxi from st pancras to paddington, then heathrow express.

But again. You'd be INSANE.

Edit: you can just call the airline and pay the change fee to fly direct from Paris to Washington too....its never that much
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Old 03-13-2018, 07:36 AM
 
Location: Washington, DC area
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Originally Posted by Jkgourmet View Post
Do it the day before and that ends the potential problem.

Same thing as before a cruise. ALWAYS fly in the day before.
I would have, but the logistics of the trip just won't work out to allow that. Considering it's a late afternoon flight, I don't see a problem getting back to London. Had the flight been any earlier, I would have made it a priority to be back in London the previous night.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hotjambalaya View Post
why exactly would you prefer to take the train? If you're just going from paris to london or vice versa the train wins every time. If its to connect to another flight you'd actually have to be INSANE to take the train.

Book a flight, check bags straight through (as long as it isn't BA who refuse to do this on separate PNRs now) and just relax.

Train you're going to have to arrive, then get out of london at rush hour (not TOO bad since most traffic will be coming the other way) by car. If you're going to try by tube it will be hell at rush hour.

All in all, as a londoner, and someone that lives not far from st Pancras and travels to heathrow a LOT, I will repeat again, you would be INSANE to take the train just to connect to a flight at heathrow.

In fact your best route if you insisted on the insanity, would be taxi from st pancras to paddington, then heathrow express.

But again. You'd be INSANE.

Edit: you can just call the airline and pay the change fee to fly direct from Paris to Washington too....its never that much
The only problem is we already have a ticket booked with BA and having to deal with airport security and bag check twice doesn't sound all that appealing. Would it still be worth it if you can't check your bags all the way through? It would be way too expensive to re-book the flight. The main reason I booked a round trip from London was it was far cheaper and to fly back to DC from a different city is outrageously expensive.

How much time would we need if we booked another flight on BA, but had to retrieve and re-check the bags again at Heathrow?

We are staying in central Paris, so the time it would take to transit to CDG, get there early enough to check bags, go through customs etc, retrieve and recheck bags would take as much time (or more) as taking the train. Honestly, an early train sounds a lot better.

Last edited by kcmo; 03-13-2018 at 07:47 AM..
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Old 03-13-2018, 08:05 AM
 
Location: Washington, DC area
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
I've done it several times. Just take an early train, leave your bags in left luggage at St Pancras, and spend some hours in London. It's a 1 hour tube ride to Heathrow or a bit quicker if you do tube to Paddington and the Heathrow Express. If you have to check bags and you're flying BA economy, allow a ton of slack time between the queue to check your bags and the queue for airport security. I never check bags. Like any airport, security is hit or miss. Sometimes, you go right through. Other times, it's an hour.
With over two weeks in Europe and I have to carry on expensive camera gear, not checking at least one bag is not really an option. For domestic travel, I don't check bags either. What time should we arrive at Heathrow for a 4pm flight? I was thinking of arriving at St Pancras at 9 or 10 AM.
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Old 03-15-2018, 11:50 PM
 
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Originally Posted by kcmo View Post
It would be way too expensive to re-book the flight.
How much did they say, or are you guessing?

My guess is that it should be about E100 to E200 at most.

If you can persuade BA to incorporate your new ticket into your existing PNR they will through check. Either way, you're going to need to call them.
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Old 03-16-2018, 06:18 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC area
10,850 posts, read 19,507,554 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hotjambalaya View Post
How much did they say, or are you guessing?

My guess is that it should be about E100 to E200 at most.

If you can persuade BA to incorporate your new ticket into your existing PNR they will through check. Either way, you're going to need to call them.
I called them. They want $1000 to add a flight from Paris to London to the ticket. They did say we could check our bags through on a separate ticket so long as it's a BA flight, but a flight to Heathrow is like 3x what the Eurostar cost. I don't see the point in flying to another London airport. We could take a cheap airline from Paris to Heathrow, but would not be able to check bags through and it would still cost more than Eurostar.

I'm really thinking we will just have to take our chances with Eurostar. There are not any decent options. First train gets to London at 8:30 AM. We should be fine.
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Old 03-17-2018, 02:00 AM
 
522 posts, read 374,117 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kcmo View Post
I called them. They want $1000 to add a flight from Paris to London to the ticket. They did say we could check our bags through on a separate ticket so long as it's a BA flight, but a flight to Heathrow is like 3x what the Eurostar cost. I don't see the point in flying to another London airport. We could take a cheap airline from Paris to Heathrow, but would not be able to check bags through and it would still cost more than Eurostar.

I'm really thinking we will just have to take our chances with Eurostar. There are not any decent options. First train gets to London at 8:30 AM. We should be fine.
Sorry I keep forgetting you're on BA, shame its not AA since you could have switched flights to the direct on from CDG.

Do you have any BA frequent flyer miles? the CDG-LHR flight should only be 4500 avios. Horrible spot to be in, and honestly I think you're best off doing the taxi to paddington station and taking the heathrow express train from there.
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