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What is the easiest and cheapest way to get to Luton airport from Watford?

I know Arriva run a 321 bus service but judging by the timetable, not all services terminate at the airport.

Has anyone walked from Church St, Luton (where those other services terminate) to the airport?

Google Maps tells me it's a 25 minute walk and I'm lightly packed but as I've never walked it, I'm a bit wary of doing it if there are other ways.

I want to avoid taking a train from Watford Junction to London Euston, walking to King's Cross and taking a train to Luton airport from there.

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    Walk the way from Church St. You are being paranoid. And why are you wary of walking to the Luton airport. Luton isn't Somalia, that you will be shot at, at random. – DumbCoder Apr 9 '14 at 8:39
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    @DumbCoder It's just the hassle of walking and I hate crossing big roads and roundabouts without there being any traffic lights or crossings. Here in Watford there are a few major thoroughfares right through town that lack pavements and I don't want to suddenly find myself having to walk on the road. Then again I've not walked it so my concerns might be unjustified. – Nobilis Apr 9 '14 at 8:59
  • if you don't want to walk 25 minutes, use a taxi – MikkaRin Apr 9 '14 at 13:19
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The Google Maps page you link isn't an accurate representation of the walk - your end point isn't really anywhere near the airport terminals. This is a bit more realistic. I'd recommend getting a taxi - £8 or less for the journey would be my estimate. Your concerns about walking are in fact perfectly justified - the route to the airport from the town centre is mostly not along streets with pavement, and while it'll most likely be safe from the perspective of worrying about getting mugged, it won't be a pleasant stroll.

As to getting from there to Watford, you've identified the right bus. Other than that, the train journey you mentioned you're trying to avoid is the only other obvious choice - it'll be quicker, but more expensive.

Source: Lived in Luton for a year, made several trips from the north of town to the airport. Used the train lines in that area extensively.

  • @pnuts £28 is the price for a taxi from Watford, m4d4sb34ns is suggesting getting the 321 from Watford into Church street and taking a taxi from there. I would suggest taking a 100 Saphire bus from Arriva which goes to Stevanage via Luton Airport, the price currently would be around £3.00ish from Luton Bus Interchange, by the main Rail Station, which is now where many of the Arriva services to other towns stop including the 321. This was built recently and Church street is now used more by local buses. Source life long Lutonian. – Sarriesfan Jan 6 '17 at 21:00
  • @pnuts Time wise it's about 1 hr and 10 minutes from Watford to Luton and 8 minutes from the Luton Bus Interchange to the Airport terminal. You might have to wait for a connecting bus though for a short while. The 100 or the A bus service mentioned below would work. – Sarriesfan Jan 6 '17 at 23:32
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    A £7.60 1 day Explorer ticket valid in the Arriva Shires region covering Herts, Beds and Bucks would be all that you need to purchase to cover the journey. – Sarriesfan Jan 6 '17 at 23:40
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As I have done the trip a couple of times now, here's how it goes:

I took the 321 from Watford Town Centre (do check the exact bus stop and times on Arriva's website) and asked the driver to give me a ticket to Luton Airport. It will be a special ticket (as of January, 2016 it costs 5.10 pounds one way) that will allow you to get to Luton (specifically Luton Rail Station Interchange) and then get another bus - service 'A' - that can take you to Luton Airport.

The ride from Watford to Luton is quite long as the 321 passes through loads of villages and St Albans on the way. I'd reserve 2 hours and a half just for the journey to the airport.

This can be done when returning as well, just ask the 'A' bus driver for a ticket to Watford.

01/2016 - EDIT: Luton Airport is currently undergoing renovations. The new bay for catching the A bus is sorta towards the car park (I believe it's bay D now, it was one of the last ones, just past the Greenline bay).

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Somewhat counterintuitive (ie heading off in almost the opposite direction) but Watford to Baker Street by Metropolitan Line is about £12.60 (standard single, may be less) and about 40 minutes. Baker Street to LTN by easyBus is from £2 and takes about 1 hour - so perhaps about 2 hours and £15 in total.

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I've done the walk from Church Street in Luton up to the airport before. It's not going to win any awards for "picturesque walk of the year", but as long as you're fit it's fine. There's a massive hill to walk up, but there's footpaths and lights along the whole way. 25 mins seems a little short to me though, I'd allow a tiny bit longer

However... Church Street in Luton is where almost all the buses go to. As such, there's lots of buses which'll get you up to the airport you can catch from there. Expect to spend a couple of quid on a single ticket.

One other option - it's a 5 minute walk from Church Street to Luton Station, then a couple of minutes on the train down to Luton Airport Parkway, from which you can get an express bus to the airport. Probably only worth doing if you're trying to travel at a time of day when the local buses from Luton to the Airport aren't frequent enough

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Train from watford junction station to St Albans Abbey and walk up the hill to St Albans main line direct to Luton parkway bus included from parkway to Luton Airport about £11

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Denis P Griffin is a new contributor to this site. Take care in asking for clarification, commenting, and answering. Check out our Code of Conduct.
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To avoid the hassle of transiting via Church St, you could opt for a bus-train combination via Radlett.

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Jason Fox is a new contributor to this site. Take care in asking for clarification, commenting, and answering. Check out our Code of Conduct.

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