Whether you have a layover, overnight sleepover or you are just quickly passing through, our London Heathrow Airport Guide is a great place to start planning your visit. Here, you’ll find information on services and facilities available inside the airport – including details about airport lounges, WiFi, mobile charging points, lockers, 24-hour food options, nearby hotels, and everything in between.
The terminal remained at full brightness all night, so no night-time cosiness, and there were quite a few people working, fixing stuff, etc. – Mo.Si
LHR Airport Overview
To help you plan your layover or overnight sleepover, here is a quick run-down about what to expect during your time at Heathrow Airport.
What to Expect
London Heathrow Airport (Code: LHR) has four active terminals (T2, T3, T4 and T5) which are connected by a landside shuttle. Given the airport’s size and traffic levels, it can be a bit complicated to navigate – particularly during tight connections and peak travel periods. The airport has a wide range of services and amenities, with a number of 24-hour options, and unlimited free WiFi. However, it is worth noting that all terminals are not created equal as the services and facilities vary at each terminal. For those travellers looking for a little added comfort while they wait, there are first class lounges (some with showers) that even economy class passengers can pay to access. See Airport Lounges in the guide below for locations and access information.
Sleeping in London Heathrow Airport
As a whole, LHR Airport is reasonably accommodating of airport sleepers. While the airport is very busy during the day, it does quiet down ever so slightly in the evening. If you are going to stay overnight at Heathrow Airport, know that different terminals do have different comfort levels and sleeping protocols. In T2, there is plenty of sleep-friendly seating. However, there aren’t very many places that are private or dimly lit, making an eye mask an asset here. In T3, there are designated rest zones with sofas and lounges. However, overnight, it seems like security tries to round people up into one central area. In T4, the best sleep options are landside, and it sounds like the airside section may close overnight. If you’re trying to sleep landside and you are not an EU resident, you might be sent to T3. If you do end up at a terminal that you are not departing from, be sure to check the inter-terminal bus departure start times so that you get to the right terminal in time for check-in. Explore our guide to sleeping in London Heathrow Airport or read some traveller airport reviews for more tips. For uninterrupted sleep, there are sleep cabins in Terminal 4, hotels connected to Terminals 4 and 5 and many other hotels nearby, connected by shuttles. See the Airport Hotels section below for locations and info.
Due to the current Covid-19 pandemic, all services and times listed below are subject to change. Some services and facilities may remain closed or operate with reduced hours. Airport tips and suggestions in this guide and elsewhere on the site were written before March 2020 and may no longer be valid. If you are planning to sleep in the public area of the terminal overnight, have a back-up plan! We’ve heard from a few travellers at other airports and they were not permitted to stay overnight. We’re not sure if that will apply to this airport, until a reader lets us know the current situation. We will start updating all of our guides in October 2021. To help us with this massive update, you can add or update information or write a review and submit photos and airport tips.
For more airport information continue scrolling down to explore more in our London Heathrow Airport Guide.
In this guide we may refer to locations as “landside” and “airside”. Landside is the public area of the terminal located in the non-secure zone, before security. Airside is the secure area of the terminal that you must reach by going through security. For more information on Europe’s Schengen Area, click here.
London Heathrow Airport Hotels & Day Rooms
- Nearest Hotel: Inside the Airport
- Sleep Cabins or Pods: Yes
- Day Rooms: Yes
- Nearby Hotels with Shuttles: Yes ($ – most require payment)
When the prospect of sleeping on the floor or in a chair isn’t really doing it for you, there is good news for those of you who are looking to sleep at Heathrow Airport in comfort. If you are on a layover, your only option will be the nap rooms offered in a few of the lounges. On the landside, or public area of the terminal, sleep cabins and guest rooms can be booked on a short-term or overnight basis. A number of nearby hotels offer airport shuttles for a fee.
Hotels inside the airport
Inside Airport Aerotel London Heathrow – Location: Terminal 3, Ground Floor, Landside, Arrivals. The hotel offers 82 guest rooms that can be rented in blocks of 6, 9, 12 hours or overnight. Rates from GBP 64.00 – 127 (Solo Plus) – GBP 76 -152 (Double Plus). » Check Rates
Inside Airport YOTELAIR – Cube-style rooms located inside Terminal 4 (landside) near Arrivals on the Mezzanine Level. Day rooms/hourly rates from 4-24 hours are offered (4 hours in a standard cabin starts at £44.00). Transit (airside) passengers will need valid entry into the UK in order to stay at this YotelAir. » Check Rates
Inside Airport Plaza Premium Lounge & No. 1 Heathrow – these lounges have private napping areas with beds. Packages start at 3 hours. Rates for the napping rooms at the Plaza Premium Lounge in Terminal 2A, 2 (Arrivals) and Terminal 4 are: Single Rooms – £60 (3 hours) • £100 (6 hours) • £20 (each additional hour). Double Rooms – £90 (3 hours) • £150 (6 hours) • £30 (each additional hour). See lounge profiles in the Airport Lounges section above.
Hotels at the airport
Sofitel – Direct access to Terminal 5 via covered walkway, and free transfers to the other terminals. Day rooms are available from 9:00AM to 6:00PM. » Check Rates
Premier Inn (T4) – Within a 10 minute walk of T4. A reader tells us it is accessible via the same covered walkway as the Hilton, but it cheaper. A free bus and train links the hotel to other terminals. » Check Rates
Hilton London Heathrow Airport – Direct access to Terminal 4 via covered walkway. » Check Rates
Hotels near Heathrow Airport
Renaissance Hotel – Located by Terminals 1, 2 and 3. Airport shuttle bus available for GBP 4.50 per person (roundtrip). » Check Rates
Ibis Styles Heathrow Airport – A budget hotel located 10 minutes from Terminals 1, 2 and 3. Average taxi fare is £10 or take the Heathrow Hoppa Bus from Terminal 3. Reviews mention taking City Bus 111 or 140 for free! » Check Rates
Leonardo Hotel – (5 minutes from the airport) Free TFL public buses. » Check Rates
To see more options there is a list of hotels near Heathrow Airport on Tripadvisor that can be sorted by price, distance, traveller rating and popularity.
Pay-per-use, Single Visit Passes & Lounge Memberships
Regardless of what class of service you are flying, there are lounges that you can enter by paying at the door, purchasing a lounge pass or through a lounge membership program. Visit the individual lounge page for more details about the lounge itself and to also find out how you can gain lounge access with just an economy class ticket!
Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge – Location: Terminal 2B – Queen’s Terminal, Airside. Lounge Access: Purchase at the time of your online check-in • Lounge membership programs.
Passes Plaza Premium Arrivals Lounge (Terminal 2) – Location: Terminal 2, Landside, Level 1, Arrivals Hall. Showers and private rest suites are available ($). Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs.
Passes Plaza Premium Lounge (Terminal 2A) – Location: Terminal 2A (Departure Level), Airside, Level 4. Showers and private rest suites are available. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs.
United Club – Location: Terminal 2, Airside, opposite Gate B46. Showers are available. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door with proof of United Airlines ticket • United Club Membership.
American Airlines Admirals Club – Location: Terminal 3, Airside on the Departure level, Lounge area H. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door with proof of American Airlines ticket • Lounge membership programs.
Passes Club Aspire – Location: Terminal 3, near Gate 9. Showers are available. Lounge Access: Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs.
Passes No. 1 Heathrow Lounge – Location: Terminal 3, airside, near gates 13-22. Showers and private rooms with beds are available at extra charge. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs.
Plaza Premium Arrivals Lounge (Terminal 3) – Location: Terminal 3, Ground Floor, Arrivals, Next to bus stops. Showers are available. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door.
Regus Express Business Lounge – Location: Terminal 3, Landside, 1st Floor. Showers are available. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door.
Art & Lounge – Location: Terminal 4, Airside, near Gate 4. Lounge Access: Coming soon.
Passes Plaza Premium Lounge (Terminal 4) – Location: Terminal 4, Airside, 1st Floor, near Gate 1. Showers and private resting suites are available ($). Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs.
Plaza Premium Arrivals Lounge (Terminal 4) – Location: Terminal 4, Landside, Mezzanine Level. Showers are available ($). Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Lounge membership programs.
Passes SkyTeam Lounge – Location: Terminal 4, Airside, Departure Hall, opposite Gate 10. Showers are available. Lounge Access: Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs.
Passes Aspire Lounge & Spa at LHR T5 – Location: Terminal 5, Airside, near Gate A18. Showers are available ($). Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs.
Plaza Premium Lounge (Terminal 5A) – Location: Terminal 5A, Airside, Level 2, next to Gate A7. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door.
Lufthansa Business Lounge – Location: Terminal 2A, Airside, After Passport Control and Security Checkpoint.
Related Pages: London Heathrow Airport Lounges
Airport WiFi / Internet and Mobile Charging
Free unlimited WiFi is available at Heathrow Airport. Connect to the “_Heathrow Wi-Fi” network. If you register for the airport’s free free Heathrow Rewards program, you will receive faster WiFi.
Additionally, there are free internet kiosks in every terminal. Locations (as of this update) are: Terminal 2, Check-in Zones A/B and C/D • Terminal 3, Check-in Zones A and F • Terminal 5, Arrivals and Check-in Zones G and D • Terminal 4, Check-in
Free Power Pole charging stations are available before and after security in all terminals. Use them to charge up to eight electronic devices. They are compatible with UK and European plugs as well as USB cables.
Airport Services and Facilities
- Mail & Fly – Packed too much liquid or forgot to take that knife out of your bag? Heathrow has a Mail & Fly program, which gives you the chance to ship your items in a dedicated box. The fee is £6 plus postage and packing.
- SIM Cards & Mobile Phone Rentals – Eliminate roaming charges and take advantage of local rates by picking up a local SIM Card. SIM Local offers SIM cards and mobile phone rentals. Locations: Terminal 3, Arrivals, Ground Floor • Terminal 5, Arrivals, Ground Floor. Pay Phones.
- Postal Services – Send your last minute postcards to friends and family from the airport’s post office. Location: Terminal 3, Landside, first floor. Hours: 9:00AM – 5:30PM (Mon – Sat) • 9:00AM – 1:00PM (Sun). Stamps are also sold at WHSmith stores and coin operated stamp machines throughout all terminals. Mail boxes are available in all terminals, both landside and airside.
Duty Free and Shopping – World Duty Free has 17 locations throughout every terminal, most are open for all flight times. In addition, there is no shortage of shops for every time of shopping requirement. The locations of M&S Simply Foods in T2 and T5 are open according to flight schedules. Family Services
- Baby Changing Facilities – Available in most washrooms, both Landside and Airside.
- Children’s Play Area – Fun and colorful Stay & Play areas offer slides, climbing toys, and activities for children up to age 9 years old. Locations: T2A, airside, Departures lounge, Gate 16 • T3, airside, Departures lounge, behind Dixon’s Travel • T4, airside, Departures lounge, Gates 1- 6 • T5A, airside, Departures lounge, Gate A7. Hours: 6:00AM – 9:00PM.
- Kids Eat Free – Many of the airport restaurants participate in the Kids Eat Free program on a rotational basis. Look out for signs at the restaurants or inquire at an Information Desk.
- Reserve & Collect – Heathrow offers pre-order service for baby milk through Boots. Simply place your order 2 days before your travel and pick it up once you are through security, freeing up space in your hand luggage for other essentials.
Food & Drinks
- Food & Drinks – There are many food concessions throughout the terminals. Below you will find the 24 hour food options at Heathrow airport.
- Terminal 2 – Landside: Costa Coffee (Before Security)
- Terminal 4 – Landside: Caffe Nero
- Terminal 5 – Landside: Costa Coffee (Arrivals)
- Water Stations – The airport has over 100 water fountains, both Landside and Airside, so you can refill your water bottles.
Information Desks – Have any questions? Visit one of the airport information desks for assistance. Locations: Available in all Terminals. During off hours, use the courtesy phones to ask for help. Airport Ambassadors area also available to help. Look for the purple uniforms. Luggage
- Baggage Trolleys – Need a hand with your luggage? Baggage trolleys are available free of charge.
- Luggage Storage & Lockers – Excess Baggage Company provides storage facilities. Rates per item: £7.50 (up to 3 hours) • £12.50 (3-24 hours) • £20 (24-48 hours) • £27.50 (48-72 hours) £5 (for every 24 hours beyond 72 hours). Maximum storage time is 90 days. There are no lockers. Hours: 5:00AM – 11:00PM.
- Terminal 2 – Arrivals, next to lifts for Heathrow Express. Hours: 8:00AM – 10:00PM.
- Terminal 3 – Arrivals.
- Terminal 4 – Arrivals and Mezzanine levels.
- Terminal 5 – Arrivals near UK arrivals.
- Luggage Wrapping – Protect your bags from theft and damage by having your bags wrapped in plastic by Excess Baggage Company. Rates: £12.50 per bag. Kiosks are located landside in the Check-In and Arrivals areas of all terminals. Hours vary per location.
- Medical Services – There are no clinics or First-Aid post at the airport. If you have a medical emergency, use one of the airport’s internal phone and dial 222 for an ambulance.
- Pharmacy – Boots has 12 locations across all terminals, before and after security. The landside locations in Terminal 5 dispense medications. The landside locations in Terminal 3 and 5 offer travel vaccinations as well malaria prevention treatments (Hours:5:30AM – 10:00PM Daily).
Mobile Charging – see “Airport WiFi / Internet and Mobile Charging” above. Money
- ATMs / Cash Machines – Need cash? ATMs are available. Fees may apply, so be sure to check your bank’s fee schedule and your daily withdrawal limit if you are travelling internationally. You may also want to notify your bank of your travel plans. Locations: Landside and Airside in all terminals.
- Currency Exchange – Travelex offers currency exchange services in all Terminals both. The airport suggests you use the order-online and pick-up service. Location: there are 35 options both landside and airside. Hours: vary by location with most being open at least 5:00AM – 10:00PM.
Postal Services – Send your last minute postcards to friends and family from the airport’s post office. Location: Terminal 3, Landside. Hours: 9:00AM – 5:30PM (Mon – Sat) • 9:00AM – 1:00PM (Sun). Stamps are also sold at WHSmith stores and coin operated stamp machines throughout all terminals. Mail boxes are available in all terminals, both landside and airside. Prayer
- Chapel – St. George’s Chapel – There is a chapel located between Terminals 1 and 3. It is underground, so you need you descend the stairs. Hours: 07:30-20:00 The prayer room is located street level.
- Prayer Rooms – Multifaith prayer rooms are available in all Terminal as follows:
- Terminal 2 – departures (after security), near Gate A21 • 2B (after security), between Gates B34 and B35.
- Terminal 3 – departures, Level 1 (before security) • departures, near Gate 24 (after security).
- Terminal 4 – check-in Zone G (before security) • mezzanine floor (before security), near Yotel • departures (after security), near Gates 3 and 4.
- Terminal 5 – check-in Zone A (before security) • departures (after security), near Gate A8 • T5B (after security), near Gate B34 • T5C (after security), near Gate C52.
Rest & Relaxation
- Hotels – see “Airport Hotels” above.
- Lounges – see “Airport Lounges” above.
- Rest Zones – The airport offers rest zones with reclining chairs in several terminals. Terminal 3 has a dedicated rest zone with sofas, lounges, snack machines and more. Location: Terminal 3, Airside, Gate 24/25.
Take precaution even when sleeping in the rest zones. In December 2019, a traveller at another airport reported that money and credit cards had been stolen from their bag even though the bag was right beside them. Protect and lock your bags as you would sleeping elsewhere in public.Showers, Salon & Spa
- Hair Salon – Bradley Smith Hair Express Bar offers a range of hair and beauty services for both men and women. Location: T5, Arrivals. Hours: 7:00AM – 7:00PM.
- Showers – Showers are available for a fee in the lounges listed below. For more information, see Airport Lounges above.
- Terminal 2 – Plaza Premium Lounge, landside • Plaza Premium Lounge, airside • United Club, airside.
- Terminal 3 – Club Aspire, airside • No. 1 Traveller Lounge, airside • Plaza Premium Lounge, arrivals, landside • Regus Express Business Lounge, landside.
- Terminal 4 – Plaza Premium Lounge, airside • Plaza Premium Lounge, arrivals, landside • Sky Lounge, airside • The House, airside.
- Terminal 5 – Aspire Lounge & Spa, airside, departures lounge.
- Spa Services – Be Relax Spa (Terminal 5, Airside. Hours: 8:00AM – 10:00PM Daily) • No. 1 Lounges* (Terminal 3, Airside. Hours: open for all flights) • Plaza Premium Lounges (4 locations offer spa services, see lounge section above for more details). * If you spend more than £25 on treatments at the No. 1 Lounge you are entitled to use the shower facilities.
Smoking Areas – There are no designated smoking areas once you get past security. if you are in transit, smoking is not permitted during the connection process. You will have to exit the terminal and pass through security control to return to the departure lounge. WiFi – see “Airport WiFi / Internet and Mobile Charging” above. Related Pages: Things to do on a layover at London Heathrow Airport
Things to do at Heathrow Airport
Art Gallery – Location: Terminal 5, Landside, near Premium Check-in counters.
Observation Areas – The best spots to watch the action on the runway are the following:
- Terminal 2 – From the Wondertree in the Departure Lounge.
- Terminal 3 – Views are available from most of the departure gates and are especially nice from the No. 1 Traveller Lounge.
- Terminal 4 – At Gates 15 and 16, there is a 270-degree panoramic view of the Southern Runway and is equipped with binoculars and touch screens to track flights.
- Terminal 5 – Views are available from most of the departure gates. The Gordon Ramsay Plane Food and wagamama offer particularly good vantage points.
Related Pages: Things to do on a layover at London Heathrow Airport
The airport is open 24 hours. However, each terminal operates different hours for its airside (secure zone) areas. A reader let us know that the airside area of Terminal 2 is closed from approx. 11:00PM – 4:00AM. We do not have the hours for the other terminals. If you know, click here to update this airport guide.
London Heathrow airport is served by the following airlines: Aer Lingus • Aeroflot • Aeroméxico • Air Algérie • Air Astana • Air Canada • Air China • Air France • Air India • Air Malta • Air Mauritius • Air New Zealand • Air Serbia • Alitalia • American Airlines • All Nippon Airways • Arik Air • Asiana Airlines • Austrian • Avianca • Azerbaijan Airlines • Beijing Capital Airlines • Biman Bangladesh Airlines • British Airways • Brussels Airlines • Bulgaria Air • Cathay Pacific • China Eastern Airlines • China Southern • Cobalt Air • Croatia Airlines • Delta Air Lines • Egyptair • El Al • Emirates • Ethiopian Airlines • Etihad Airways • Eurowings • EVA Air • Finnair • Garuda Indonesia • Gulf Air • Hainan Airlines • Iberia • Icelandair • Iran Air • Japan Airlines • Kenya Airways • KLM • Korean Airways • Kuwait Airlines • LATAM • LOT • Lufthansa • Malaysia Airlines • MEA • Oman Air • Philippines Airlines • PIA • Qantas • Qatar Airways • Royal Air Maroc • Royal Brunei Airlines • Royal Jordanian • SAS • Saudia • Shenzhen Airlines • Singapore Airlines • South African Airlines • SriLankan Airlines • Swiss • TAP Portugal • Tarom • Thai Airways • Tianjin Airlines • Tunisair • Turkish Airlines • Turkmenistan Airlines • United Airlines • Uzbekistan Airways • Vietnam Airlines • Virgin Atlantic • Vueling.
Airport Transportation: Getting To/From The Airport
Bus and Coach
Heathrow Airport has a central bus station, open 24 hours and is located just a short walking distance from Terminals 2 and 3. Some buses and coaches make stops at Terminals 4 and 5 as well, but a free shuttle service is available for those who need to reach the central bus station from Terminals 4 and 5. Here are some notable bus and coach services:
- Coaches – National Express, Megabus and other operators run services from Heathrow to more than 500 destinations.
- Local Buses – An extensive bus network operates around Heathrow and to destinations in west London and the Thames Valley.
- Buses to rail stations – Luxury coaches and buses connect Heathrow with the national rail network at Feltham, Watford, Woking and Reading.
- Hotel Buses – Direct bus services operate between Heathrow terminals and a large number of hotels near the airport.
- Group travel by coach – If you’re dropping off or collecting a group from Heathrow, this step-by-step guide will help you and your customers enjoy stress-free travel.
To plan your route, visit the London Heathrow Airport website.
The following car rental agencies have desks in the Arrivals Hall at Heathrow: Alamo • Avis • Budget • Enterprise • Europcar • Hertz • National • Sixt.
See Airport Hotels above.
Heathrow Terminals 4 and 5 are connected by trains and buses available free of charge. As for Terminals 2 and 3, there is just a quick walk between them.
Fully-licensed London black taxis are available at the taxi ranks located outside of each airport terminal.
Trains on the Piccadilly Line can get to Heathrow in under an hour from central London. Wait time is always ten minutes or less, even during off-peak times. Heathrow has one Underground station just a few minutes walk between Terminals 2 and 3, and one station each in the basements of Terminals 4 and 5. For fares, schedules and further information, visit the Transport for London website.
The Heathrow Express transports passengers between the airport and Paddington Station in 15 minutes. Trains depart every 15 minutes. For current fares and information, visit the Heathrow Express website.
The Heathrow Connect provides a slower train service than the Heathrow Express, stopping at several stations in West London on the way to and from Paddington Station. Heathrow Connect trains depart every 30 minutes and take between 31 to 49 minutes travel time in one direction.
Last updated: 2020-10-21
This guide is for informational purposes only to assist with your planning. All information, including rates and hours, are subject to change at any time without notice. The information in this airport guide is based on information collected and/or received from the airports, lounges, hotels, transportation providers and their web sites. We are not representatives of any of the above mentioned service providers. To report errors or to add/update any items mentioned in the guide: update the airport guide or write a review.