London Gatwick

Hi Guys,

Last time I visited the UK was before Brexit and Covid. Now I may need to travel with a connection flight through London Gatwick.

The waiting time between flights should be around 8 hours, so now Im wondering if it is enough time to cross UK border (Spanish passport and fully vaccinated), catch a train to Brighton, tick some local beers (4 or 5 venues) and return to Gatwick on time for my next flight (around 1h30min before departure).

I have no idea of how long could it take to cross the UK border nowadays.

Thanks for your help.

5.5 hours (6.5 minus 2x30min train rides according to Google maps) to clear customs and security otw back in doesn’t leave much time for beer? That sounds stressful/ambitious to me during normal times let alone clearing during a pandemic as I am constantly paranoid about missing flights but I’m curious to see what the locals say though.

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I travelled in and out of Gatwick in November/December last year and one surprise for me was using the North terminal for the first time (I had always used South historically) and that means an extra shuttle to the South Terminal which is where the train station is, so you would need to factor that in (if your flight is before the end of March when the South Terminal reopens)

It depends when you are arriving. In “normal” times it would be doable, but a friend who currently works/travels from London to Brighton at the moment has been complaining about the train service allot recently with last minute cancellations/delays etc to what normally is a fast good service generally.

Also if you arrive before 27th Feb then I would say don’t try it due to engineering works/bus replacement from tomorrow until then.

If its after March you arrive then you are hopefully back to 25min fast trains between Gatwick/Brighton and if you were coming in/out of the South Terminal instead of North this would buy a little more time to make that work.

edit# Being a British passport holder I cant comment on what the border time would be like for you in Gatwick now post Brexit, as it was pretty quick for me then (under 1 hour)

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I get a fit of anxiety even THINKING of having an itenerary like that. I would definitely stay airside and drink the Flying Horse dry.


Horsham and Redhill will be good options.