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Going from Canterbury to London.

Madrid
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Going from Canterbury to London.

Hi everybody!

We' ll spend Christmas in Canterbury, and I was trying to realize how to go to London during the stay (coming back to Kent every every evening).

Of course, you have the train form the East station to downtown London (1,5 hour trip), but I was also thinking about getting closer to some London suburb in the A2, and then to catch the train/tube to downtown, in order to save both time and money.

Do you recommend that option? Which place would be the best for leaving the car (for free, if possible)?.

Many thanks.

UK
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1. Re: Going from Canterbury to London.

When in Christmas, exactly Less? Some days over Christmas London is closed, (25th totally, not even transport, and mostly also on the 26th), and I wouldnt recommend going in on the 24th or the 27th either, unless you like crowds, packed trains and packed roads.

I presume you are staying with relatives or friends or have a really really cheap place to stay? Because otherwise it makes no sense at all to commute in as you are doing every day. It also makes no sense to drive nearer and then train, the money you spend on car hire, petrol, plus the hassle will far outweigh any small savings on the train. It wont save time either, trains go faster than cars.

Cotswolds
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2. Re: Going from Canterbury to London.

Possibly not cheaper (well certainly not ...) but definitely quicker will be to drive to Ebbsfleet (near Gravesend) and get the new high speed commuter service* (17 minutes to St Pancras).

Otherwise I doubt that driving part way will help much

*At some stage this will serve Canterbury - not sure when though

Madrid
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3. Re: Going from Canterbury to London.

Thank you very much for the advices.

We're going to be there from 22 to 28 December. You are right, I'll be there with my wife and 3 children, and we lodge in the Regency Villas at Broome Park Estate, that is the "timesharing holidays" thing.

So the car hire will be for the whole week, not only for commuting these days to London, that wouldn't be an extra.

IAW your comments, my best option is going there 23-24, or the weekend (26-27). I will evaluate the Ebbsfleet option, specially if I finally buy the "London Pass+transportation" for two consecutive days.

In that case, the commuter service could be for free, but not the train from Canterbury. Let's see...

UK
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4. Re: Going from Canterbury to London.

I think it depends why you are going to London. general sightseeing or particular places, maybe there is a certain museum or art exhibition you are planning to go in?

If so, if there are particular places you want to visit, you should double check if they are open on 26/27, the same goes for particular shops.

If its just general sightseeing I think it will definitely be quieter on 26/27.

There will be restricted train times on 24, 26 & 27 (none at all 25th) so check before booking. The fast train from Ebbsfleet sounds good, I wasn't aware of that.

On the 23rd, trains will be running normally, it will be busy, especially shopping, but better than 24th when things start to close down early plus you have the crush of very last minute shoppers.

Cotswolds
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5. Re: Going from Canterbury to London.

A bit more digging shows that the high speed commuter service will serve Canterbury West from 13 December with a journey time to St Pancras of approx 1 hour. Off peak service is hourly - more frequent at peak times

Albufeira, Portugal
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6. Re: Going from Canterbury to London.

Yes, Canterbury West will have the new high-speed train to London from December 13th. I suspect it would be worth it for the ride itself. I agree, having been a regular train user in Kent for more than 30 years, here is absolutely nothing to be gained by driving tong towards London, paying car parking charges at a closer station and then taking a train into the city.

Cautionary notes: On December 24th, last trains run at or around 8pm and by 10pm everything everywhere is closed.

There is no public transport at all in Kent/London on December 25th and just about everything is closed, so there is no reason to travel.

Over the past few years transport on the 26th has been virtually non-existent outside London, despite there being a full programme of football matches and horseracing plus shops being open.

I don't know whether trains will be running from Canterbury on the 26th, so to get to London (or anywhere else) driving may be the only option. You will need to check on the website of the local train company www.southeasternrailway.co.uk for the information about trains over the holiday period..

Monday 28th is a public holiday, so trains will be running to Sunday times ie one train every hour.

I hope that helps.

Albufeira, Portugal
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7. Re: Going from Canterbury to London.

Sorry for the terrible typing in the first paragraph above. Sticky keyboard, very slow response from site when typing and oh for an 'edit post' option!

Madrid
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8. Re: Going from Canterbury to London.

Thank you very much everybody for your replies...just a final question: parking in downtown London is free on sundays?. In that case, and just for sightseeing, I would be there on Sunday the 27th.

London, United...
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9. Re: Going from Canterbury to London.

Where is 'downtown' London? We don't refer to London with that term as they do in the USA etc.Sorry-a bit pedantic, I know!

Madrid
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10. Re: Going from Canterbury to London.

Dear Juka,

Your comment is not pedantic, it is just unnecessary.

By any chance, I've studied American English in my country. In addition to that, I've been living recently in the States for one year.

That is why I'am used to American words that, sometimes, don't mean the same in Britain. It is not something deliberate, it is just natural.

In any case, I'm sure that you know the meaning of "downtown" London, so you could had provided me the information requested instead of replying making jokes about idiomatic considerations.

My best regards to all the great British.