Mad Dash(?) from Heathrow to Gatwick in 3 hours

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03 Jun 2011 12:00 AM by RonArt Star rating. 20 posts Send private message

After 7+ months total (3 with my U.S. government, the rest with the Spanish Consulate in Houston, TX, USA), I've decided to go to Málaga for just 3 months (i.e., without a Retirement Visa). If I do get the visado before I leave, I may stay longer; else, I'll just return stateside and spend my retirement money here (it appears Spain doesn't want it). 

My flight has me landing in Heathrow around noon on a Monday, getting my luggage, getting past customs, hopping on a bus to Gatwick, and getting past customs there. I've got 3 hours and 10 minutes from the time one plane lands to the time the other takes off for Spain. My question is: DOES 3 HRS SEEM LIKE ENOUGH TIME TO MAKE THIS TRANSFER? 

Do you know of someone who has done this? Or, had trouble doing this? All answers will be appreciated. Thanks In Advance. 

-- Ron

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03 Jun 2011 8:47 AM by Jimbofinn Star rating in Chiclana De La Front.... 213 posts Send private message

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3 Hrs 10 mins, phew you are most definately cutting it very very fine.  The trip by road will take on average 40 mins (less any traffic holdups).  If you are lucky,  and a bus is ready & waiting for you when you leave Heathrow (which I doubt) you may be lucky and get there with 2hours to spare (and this is assuming you have been 1st to get your luggage off the carosel and have sailed through customs).  I would then certainly suggest catching a taxi to avoid that type of delay with buses etc., but in short, I think you are clutching at straws and really don't have much chance.  Have you looked at the option of travelling up to Stanstead or Luton and taking one of the budget airlines flights to Spain?  Just a thought.  Anyway good luck in your endeavours and have a great time here in Spain.


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03 Jun 2011 9:38 AM by Goldie Star rating. 154 posts Send private message

Hi, you may not have given yourself a lot of time what if your plane is delayed in the states? at Heathrow some gates are 15 min walk to the customs area, get a taxi from Heathrow costs about £55.

Could you not get the direct flight from the states to gatwick or an internal flight in the states then on to gatwick?

Anyway best of luck.


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03 Jun 2011 10:40 AM by nfm2862 Star rating in Welling, Kent & Al A.... 1461 posts Send private message

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I would say that this is definitely not enough time.

Why not book a flight with Iberia from Heathrow to Malaga?



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03 Jun 2011 2:27 PM by Piltonian Star rating in Madrid. 36 posts Send private message

To add to the general sense of gloom and despondency, your landing time at LHR is just that: the scheduled time of touchdown. You have to add taxi time, time to disembark, the walk/run to immigration, queuing at immigration, being asked questions at immigration, getting to the baggage hall thinking "well, at least the bags must definitely have arrived by now" to discover that someone has kindly decided to hold them back so they do not get lonely on the carousel by themselves, waiting for the bags, getting the bags, leaving through customs.....

In short, with no stacking delays, you should add an hour before you're ensconced in a cab: if all goes smoothly, you will then reach LGW with the required hour in hand. But any flight delays on the way over, air traffic stacking you above Biggin Hill, or a creash on the M25, and youve missed it.

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03 Jun 2011 4:14 PM by RonArt Star rating. 20 posts Send private message

 Thanks all for the replies. The feeling is unanimous. The odds are against me. But again, thanks, I'd rather know the truth. 

 I got this flight from British Airways. I only discovered the glitch upon searching for the shuttle service. The customer representative at BA's Executive Club assured me that it could be done -- that he has done it. I'm like you, I think it is going to be a gamble. I'll post my actual experience in early July. 

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