How to get from Stansted Airport into central London

With the most scheduled flights to and from Europe out of all six London airports, many travellers to the English capital will pass through Stansted (airport code STN). However, what many of them might not realise is that London’s third busiest airport isn’t technically in London – it’s in the county of Essex, 61km (38 miles) northeast of the capital. The journey from Stansted Airport to London can be as quick as 45 minutes, but much, much longer if you’re heading to, say, West London and need to cross the city.

Because of its location, Stansted Airport is most easily accessed by travellers heading to the eastern side of London – specifically, those who want to end up somewhere near Liverpool Street Station, where the direct express train from the airport terminates. For everyone else, the best option is likely a National Express coach, which stops at 18 locations around London.


Airport transport options to get from Stansted airport to central London

Related articles:
How to get from Heathrow Airport into central London
How to get from Gatwick Airport into central London
How to get from Luton Airport into central London
How to get from London City Airport into central London
How to get from Southend Airport into central London

Stansted Airport to London top travel tips:

  • The transport type you choose will mainly depend on where you’re heading to in central London. It’s a huge city, and the cheapest or quickest option may not necessarily take you near where you need to go. Plug your destination into the Rome2rio search bar to find out the fastest way to get there.
  • The Stansted Express is the only direct train from Stansted to London, and the most reliable method of transport to the airport as it doesn’t have to contend with road traffic. Journey time is only 45 minutes and trains leave every 15 minutes at peak times.
  • Book online in advance for the cheapest Stansted Express fares. If you’re travelling in a group of three or four, you can get savings of up to 50%.
  • Many people will not find the Stansted Express terminus at Liverpool St Station convenient; this part of East London is more geared towards business than tourism. The train also stops at Tottenham Hale in London’s northeast, from where you can connect to the Victoria Line on the London Underground.
  • If you’re heading anywhere that’s not East London, chances are that the coach will be more convenient for you. However, be aware that traffic, especially at rush hour, may make this quite a slow option.
  • National Express has a dynamic pricing system, meaning tickets are cheaper the earlier you book (fares from London Stansted to London can be as low as £3.50 in advance). If you’re booking tickets last minute or on the day, Airport Bus Express’ flat-fee structure may well have the edge on price.
  • If you need to transfer from Stansted to Heathrow, Gatwick or Luton, a National Express coach is probably your best bet. There’s no direct train service linking the airports. To travel between Stansted and Southend Airports, take the X30 bus; it takes around 90 minutes and you can buy tickets on board. To get to London City Airport, take the Stansted Express into London, from where you can connect to the Tube/DLR.

Popular routes:
Stansted Airport to London by train
Stansted Airport to London by Stansted Express
Stansted Airport to London by coach
Stansted Airport to London by taxi
Stansted Airport to Liverpool Street station
Stansted Airport to Tottenham Hale station
Stansted Airport to Victoria station
Stansted Airport to Paddington station
Stansted Airport to St Pancras station
Stansted Airport to Heathrow Airport
Stansted Airport to Gatwick Airport
Stansted Airport to London City Airport
Stansted Airport to London Luton Airport
Stansted Airport to Southend Airport

Where can I stay near Stansted? Search for hotels near Stansted here

Looking for things to do and see in London? Find the city’s top attractions and how to get to them here

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