Gatwick South Terminal Guide
If you are flying from Gatwick South Terminal and want to know what to expect, then you are in the right place. In this article we will give you all the tips you need to ensure your trip goes without a hitch.
Continue reading to find out more about the ways you can get to and from the South Terminal as well as your parking options with an updated price table. Learn about all the duty-free shops and restaurants, and how to gain access to one of the lounges. Last but not least, check out the full list of all the essential facilities that are available in the departures, check-in, and arrivals area.
If your flight departs from the North Terminal, we also have you covered with our dedicated Gatwick North Terminal guide.
*All flights are currently operating from the North Terminal due to the Covid-19.
About Gatwick South Terminal
Gatwick South Terminal opened for the first time in 1958. Back then, it was the only terminal, and home to 11 aircraft stands. Gatwick was among the first airports in the world to have an undercover walkway that allowed passengers to wait in an enclosed area before boarding the plane. Between 2008 and 2014, South Terminal underwent a facility reconstruction that cost £1.2 billion. The new facilities include 19 new security lanes and a specially designed entrance for passengers with physical disabilities. Τhe works also included a lane dedicated for 1st class and business class travellers.
The South Terminal hosts major airlines, such as British Airways, Norwegian, TUI and Vueling, that operate both short and long haul flights. Due to COVID-19, passenger traffic has dropped significantly resulting in the temporary closing of the South Terminal. As of June 2020, all flights are operating from the North Terminal.
Travelling to Gatwick’s South Terminal
Gatwick is one of the most well-connected airports and you will have no trouble finding the right transfer option for your budget and convenience from South Terminal Gatwick.
With direct rail connections to over 120 train stations, Gatwick Airport is by far the best connected airport by train in the country. Located at the South Terminal, the Gatwick railway station is only a short walk away from departures and arrivals. From there, you can also take the free shuttle to the North Terminal and back. Train tickets are available at the station, at the information desk in the arrivals hall, and online. Visit the official airport website to see live train schedule updates and check out our rail trips for further information.
Some of the main options are:
- Gatwick Express: London Victoria, Brighton
- Southern: London Victoria, London Bridge, Clapham Junction, Brighton, Southampton, Eastbourne and Portsmouth, and more
- Thameslink: central London, Brighton, Bedford, Luton Airport Parkway
- Great Western Railway: Reading
By Bus & Coach
If you are headed to a nearby town or even further afield, a bus could be the most convenient transportation option. Every day, buses and coaches depart from Gatwick Airport to over 100 destinations within the UK. Often the routes are direct but some may require you to stop and change to a connecting bus. If your flight arrives late at night, a bus may save you from spending extra money on alternative means of transport.
There are local, regional and national services and even an Airport Transfer Service that will drop you off and pick you up from the airport hotels. Most buses operate from the lower forecourt of the South Terminal Gatwick Airport. You can purchase a ticket from the terminal’s ticket desks, online, or onboard. Almost all coach services are wheelchair accessible. For more specific accessibility information, contact the operator.
Taking a taxi to Gatwick airport is always the most expensive option. It is, however, the most comfortable and when you choose a trusted company, you will know in advance the standard charges for the journey. A saloon car ride that can carry up to 4 passengers costs £60-£90 for a single trip. People carriers and minibuses with a capacity up to 8 passengers, can charge from £70 - £110 one way. This is an estimation of the fares from the airport to central London. They can vary depending on peak hours and the number of luggage you carry.
The taxi ranks are outside the arrivals hall. At Gatwick South Terminal, you’ll spot them at Arrivals level 2. Follow the exit to long and Short Stay car parks, then pass the cash machines and Moneycorp Bureau De Change.
The driving distance from central London to Gatwick is around 28 miles (45km). It is easily accessible via the M23 Junction 9 and to A23 London-Brighton road. Connection to the national road network is also simple via the M25. Once you approach the airport, remember that Gatwick Airport South Terminal is in a different address than the North. Set RH6 0NP as your end destination on your GPS.
See below the distance between Gatwick and some major cities:
- London - 28 miles
- Brighton - 28 miles
- Reading - 65 miles
- Southampton - 91 miles
- Cambridge - 96 miles
Gatwick South Parking
Parking at Gatwick South is possible in both on-site and off-site facilities. There are some differences between the two that play a decisive role when parking at the airport. Official airport parking facilities are within walking distance to the terminals but are significantly more expensive than off-site car parks. Gatwick Airport has four official facilities:
- Short Stay, ideal for picking up and dropping off passengers
- Long Stay, a more budget-friendly option for long term parking
- Premium, mostly for business travellers that are away for a few days
- Valet Parking for the ultimate convenience and having your car waiting for you ready upon return
*Long Stay car park and Valet Parking will reopen on 1 April 2021.
The off-site privately owned car parks are serious competition for the official car parks, as they offer competitive rates, complementary services, such as a free shuttle transfer, and high-quality security measures with a Park Mark accreditation. On our website, you can find prices starting at £4.64 at one of the independent off-site car parks! See a quick comparison of on-site and off-site facilities and then add your travel dates on the search bar above to find out the exact prices for that period.
|Parking Service||Price Per Day||Price per week||Price per 2 weeks||Transfer Time||Rating|
|Cambridge Hotel||£4.64||£32.48||£64.89||6 minutes||8.5|
|Cophall Parking||£5.06||£35.42||£70.86||10 minutes||9.1|
|APH Parking||£5.22||£36.54||£73.05||12 minutes||9.3|
|Ace Parking||£5.89||£41.23||£82.40||2 minutes||9.5|
|Short Stay South*||£7.36||£51.52||£103.00||5 minutes||N/A|
Rates are based on the last price update for April 2021. *It is not possible to book official products via Parkhero.
At the South Terminal
Gatwick Airport South Terminal offers many services that aim to make your stay as stress-free as possible. It has an extensive list of duty free shops, lounges, and other amenities that every traveller would look for in an airport.
South Terminal Premium Security
You can skip the annoying long queues at security checkpoints by purchasing a premium security access. For only £5, when booked online, and £6, when purchased on the spot, you can skip the queues, avoid the stress of whether or not you'll catch your flight, and spend time roaming around duty free shops, restaurants, and lounges.
Upon arrival at the airport, follow the signs to the Premium Gatwick lane. Show your confirmation email or pay for access. Online bookings are open until two hours before your flight. The premium security access service runs daily from 04:00 to 20:45.
South Terminal Lounges
Spend some quiet time before your flight at a Gatwick South Airport lounge. The airport hosts several lounges, some are handled by airlines and others by official airport lounge chains.
In the South Terminal, you can pre-book or pay the entrance fee at the airport. Choose among My Lounge, Club Aspire Lounge, No1 Lounge, Clubrooms or British Airways Lounge. Access at the British Airways lounge is permitted only to first and business class travellers. In all the other lounges, you can enter regardless of traveller status, but you have to follow the smart casual dress code. Some of the most common amenities include complimentary food and drinks, free unlimited Wi-fi access, working spaces, and great runway views. The lowest prices start at £24 per adult and can go up to £42.
If you are looking for more information about entrance fees, services and opening hours, read our complete Gatwick Airport Lounges guide.
*All lounges are closed until further notice, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Duty Free at the South Terminal
Whatever it is that you need, you’ll find it in one of the Gatwick South Terminal duty free shops. Most of them are branches of national and international retail chains, popular in the UK and the duty free sections of many UK airports.
Did you forget to pack an essential item in your bags? No need to worry as you can buy it here; from electronics, souvenirs, books, beauty and fashion products, to alcohol and tobacco. Gatwick South Terminal hosts some major brands, such as Jo Malone London, Well Pharmacy, Hugo Boss, Harrods, Dixons, World Duty Free and more.
For your convenience, you can choose between two services, the “Collect on Return” and the “Reserve From Home”. As the name of the first service suggests, you can buy an item and collect it later when you return from your trip. The other option allows you to choose and reserve a product online so that you can ensure that they have it in stock. When you arrive at the airport, you can go to the duty free store, pay and pick up your product. The official Gatwick Airport website has the updated list of all the duty free shops that offer one or both services.
Food and Drink at the South Terminal
At Gatwick South Terminal, you have plenty of food and drink options before and after security. Most of them open around 7:00 a.m. and close around 10:00 p.m. Even when you’re on a tight budget, there are many fast-food chains or healthy snack bars where you can have a proper meal at a low price. Your choices aren’t limited to these two options. A host of local and international cuisine eateries, gourmet restaurants, cafes and bars are located across the airport. You can sit in or takeaway, especially if you’re in a rush.
You’ll find the following restaurants only in the South Terminal: Caffe Nero, Itsu, Giraffe, Grain Store, Joe’s Coffee House, Nando’s, The Beehive, The Flying Horse, The London Bar, Wondertree.
*Due to Covid-19, only Caffe Nero and Boots are open in the South Terminal before security.
Facilities at Gatwick South Terminal
Gatwick South Terminal offers several facilities that every passenger would need. You can find these services in three different locations, South Terminal Check In, South Terminal Departures, South Terminal Arrivals.
Bureau de Change: The money exchange counters are in
- Level 2 check in area, one near London News Company and another near the WHSmith store
- Lower level and Level 3 at South Terminal Departures
- South Terminal Arrivals, one opposite the M&S Simply Food store and another near the Costa Coffee.
Cash machines are
- in the South Terminal check in area, one near the Moneycorp Bureau de Change and another near the check-in Zone H.
- in South Terminal Arrivals, close to the exit for Long & Short stay car parks.
- In the check in area next to Boots Pharmacy
- In the Arrivals, next to the Airport Concierge
Wi-fi is available and free across the airport for the first 90 minutes. There are also dedicated internet kiosks, but they charge 10 pounds per minute.
Luggage trolleys are free to use, and you can get one from:
- the forecourt in the Departures
- baggage reclaim in the Arrivals
Before the arrival gates, there is a private storage facility that charges £9 per item. The service is open 24/7.
The special assistance information desk is located next to the VAT Refund office at the check in area.
In case your phone’s battery ran down or you don’t have enough call credit, you can use one of the public pay phones which are in the:
- check-in area in Zone J
- departure area, level 3 before security
Many toilet and baby changing facilities are located throughout the airport:
- In the check in area, opposite Boots and zone A
- In departures on all three levels, and additional shower facilities on level 1 and 3
- In arrivals, opposite Boots
A multi-faith prayer room is available on level 3 before security.
Parking at Gatwick Airport is made easy with the help of Parkhero. As a leading airport parking comparison site, we help travellers flying from Gatwick and all major UK airports to find affordable and secure parking facilities a just minutes from the terminals. We are dedicated to collaborating with the most trustworthy car parks that cater to your airport parking needs.
At the top of the page, you can use the search bar to enter your travel dates to begin your search. Within seconds you will get a page with all the available options for your search query. You can read a brief overview of the most important car park features and then click on the one you like the most. Complete your order without any additional fees and without having to create an account. In a few minutes, you’ll receive a booking confirmation email that will grant you access to the car park.
Airport parking is that simple with Parkhero!
Please note that the information above is provided for reference only, and does not constitute as travel advice. For the most recent and relevant information about Gatwick Airport, you should check the official website at: www.gatwickairport.com.View informative-posts View all blogposts