Updated: February 2012
Taking the Tube between Heathrow Airport and Central London
The Piccadilly Line connects all Heathrow terminals with frequent services to central London between 05:02 and 00:18 Monday to Saturday and 05:46 to 23:54 Sunday and public holidays. (Heathrow Terminal 4 station closes at 23:58 Monday to Saturday, and 23:49 on Sunday and public holidays). All stations are in zone 6 (central London is zone 1.) London Underground is the cheapest way to travel to and from Heathrow but it takes longer (about 50 minutes to central London).
Fares to Zone 1 from £5.30 cash single (from £2.90 with an Oyster card).
Traveling by Train between Heathrow Airport and Central London
The Heathrow Express is the quickest way into central London.
Heathrow Express operates four non-stop trains per hour to and from Paddington. Trains depart from Paddington between 05:10 and 23:25 and return from Terminal 5 (calling at Terminals 1 & 3) between 05:07 and 23:42 (05:03 and 23:48 on Sundays). Fares from £16.50 single (online price), journey time 15-20 minutes. You can book tickets at the VisitBritain Shop (Buy Direct).
There are three stations at Heathrow: Terminals 1 & 3, Terminal 4 and Terminal 5. Passengers for Terminal 4 must change at Terminals 1 & 3 for a transfer service. Travelcards and Oyster pay as you go are not valid on Heathrow Express.
HeathrowConnect.com also runs a train service between Heathrow Airport and Paddington station via five intermediate stations in west London. Because it has a few stops along the way the fare is a bit cheaper. Journey time to Paddington is 25 minutes and trains operate every 30 minutes (every 60 minutes on Sundays). Trains depart from Paddington between 04:42 (06:12 on Sundays) and 23:03 (23.12 on Sundays) and return from Heathrow Terminals 1 & 3 between 05:07 (06:03 on Sundays) and 23:53. Passengers for Terminals 4 and 5 should use the free transfer service from Terminals 1 & 3 station. Fares from Paddington from £8.50 adult single. Oyster pay as you go and Zone 1–6 Travelcards are only valid for travel between Paddington and Hayes & Harlington.
If you're waiting for a train from Paddington on a Friday, and are in the area before midday, you might like to walk five minutes away to the canal and see the Rolling Bridge.
Coach Services between Heathrow Airport and Central London
National Express operates up to three coaches per hour to and from Victoria Coach Station. Journey time is about 40-60 minutes but remember to allow extra time in case of traffic problems. Online fares are from £5.50 single. Passengers for Terminals 1 and 3 should travel via the Central Bus Station. Some services also call at Terminal 5.
National Express also operate a regular Shuttle Bus services to and from local hotels. Adult single fare £4. You can book tickets at the VisitBritain Shop (Buy Direct).
There is a 'normal' London night bus, the N9, which leaves Aldwych for Heathrow Airport every 20 minutes throughout the night. The fare can be paid for by Oyster card making it the cheapest option at £1.30, or cash fare £2.20, although journey time is long at 70-90 minutes. Use Journey Planner to check times.
By Taxi between Heathrow Airport and Central London
You can usually find a queue of black cabs at all terminals or go to one of the approved taxi desks. The fare is metered, but watch for extra charges such as late night or weekend journeys. Tipping is not compulsory, but 10% is considered the norm. Expect to pay at least £55 to get to Central London. Only use a reputable mini-cab and never use unauthorized drivers who offer their services at airports or stations.