Eating in Stansted
The cheapest way to survive in Stansted is - of course - bringing your own food with you. However, compared to central London, food is still affordable. Several restaurants, snack bars and cafés are avaliable in the public area (landside), mostly offering Italian cuisine and/or sandwhiches. A nice exception is O'Neills, an Irish pub offering also some irish and english dishes. Some of the shops, including Caffé Alba near zome J/K, are open all night. My favourite was Pret, a chain which is known for its fresh hand made sandwhiches. Prices for these sandwhiches also beat most of the others. Another good offer, although not as tasty as Pret, is Boot’s “Meal Deal”. It includes a pre-packed sandwhich, a small snack (muesli bar, crisps or fruit) and a drink for 3,49 GBP. Since the opening of a Burger King Restaurant in 2008, also “classic” fast food is available in Stansted.
A poem from Locklainn (many thanks)
Lochlainn posted this on the Misc Forum about Ryanair - the main user of Stansted. thanks again.
They say there's no point in relyin'
On the airline called after ould Ryan
Their flights get the chop with a frequency
Way beneath all the standards of decency
And some say the biggest disgrace is
The hick little airports and places
So far from the big destinations
That Ryanair use as their stations
Not to mention the fact they won't feed ya
Unless of your shekels they bleed ya
And their magazine's dog eared and tatty
And their cabin crews' manners are ratty
And their livery's jokes are just sneery
A bit like their boss man O'Leary ...
But despite all these claims so ballistic
It pays to review the statistics
Where you'll find that of all the flights chopped
In a year, it's Aer Lingus who've dropped
In the reliability table
Down to bottom, and nor were they able
Most times to provide explanation
For this frequently met situation
And neither will they nor BA
Admit to the devious way
That they stop Ryanair from landin'
In airports that they have a hand in
Or the way they consign Ryanair's workforce
To the nethermost parts of their airports!
So to all you Ryanair detractors
I implore ye to review these factors
And remember this question profound -
"What the hell do ye want for a pound?!?!?!"
Stansted - an Airport in Essex
After a disastrous failed first attempt to fly to Germany with RyanAir from this airport back in August, due to Al Quaida fckin things up for thousands of passengers, I had another opportunity to fly to Germany just after Christmas and this time had a lot more success.
Stansted is much smaller than the other London airports and it's very easy to find your way around. Check in was very quick, it's still the "One Piece of Handluggage" only policy so my small shoulder bag had to go inside my rucksack - thankfully it was still under 10kg. Oh and they provide transparent plastic bags for carrying liquids on board. Nothing over 100ml though or else it must go in to the hold luggage.
For all the practical information you could need about Stansted click the link.
It's got shops, cafes and all the usual airport facilities .. including lengthy queues through security... make sure you give yourself plenty of time for getting through them... budget airlines wait for no one, and when push comes to shove.. which it inevitably does with RyanAir or Easy Jet, it's first come first served. "No frills" also means "no courtesy."
walking to stansted airport.
"an interesting alternative to stansted express."
airline tickets these days are so cheap that taking the train to the airport is sometimes costlier than taking the plane abroad.
i was joking with that issue when i decided that i was going to walk from central london to stansted airport to catch my flight back to denmark after a weekend of partying with vt friends in london.
i ended up walking 85 kilometers even if the actual distance is quite a bit shorter, as i got lost a few times.
that was fine to me though.
a healthy walk is good after a weekend of drinking with bradbrown.
"meeting people along the way."
on my way to the airport i met many friendly people who took interest in my trip.
most of them were polite, friendly and they helped me with directions, while trying not to tell me that i was a complete idiot.
the cute little bargirl on the photo is a good example of that.
she managed to show me directions towards the airport and serve me beer, while trying to decide if she should laugh or cry at me.
"the long road to stansted."
i started in busy morning trafffic on sunday and by monday afternoon i was out in quiet countryside.
walking to the airport is a nice way to see the city disapear.
Stansted - Home of the No-Frills flight
"Gateway to Europe ?"
Luton might argue the point, but with Ryanair and Easyjet both flying all over Europe from here, Stansted Airport gets my vote. Manston was a new challenger for the south-east, but only had one airline, EUJet and a fraction of the flights, so had a long way to go to catch up. Sadly the company owning both Manston and EUJet went bust, so the future of Manston is very much undecided.
There is loads of information about Stansted on VT, and I'm not going to repeat here a lot of facts that have been given elsewhere, although some of them have found their way into my tips. Lets just say that if you live on this side of London, it's the gateway to Europe.
"Ryanair and Stansted"
A few years ago Ryanair started flying from Stansted, and the operation took off (sorry) in a big way and outgrew the facilities. So they built a whole satellite wing just for Ryanair, with its own access route - you don't get to go on the train - you have to walk. You do get a different view of the apron though as you trudge down the escalator, over the bridge, along the corridor, up the escalator, over the bridge, down the corridor .......
.......... until you finally reach the departure gate, and wait for the flight to be called. No allocated seats on Ryanair, so everyone stays close to the gate to try and get on first. Eventually the flight is announced, "please wait to be called forward", but someone twitches, and there's a rush to form a queue ......
......... where you stand for another fifteen minutes until they let you board. Such is life on the no-frills flight ! At least Ryanair are now letting the third of the flight with the lowest boarding card numbers on first, so if you get there before the check-in opens you stand a chance of geting a decent seat on the plane.
You get what you pay for - NO FRILLS ! But why spend loads on the flight when it's only a couple of hours - save it for a decent hotel. Of course there is a downside - queues at the gate because the seats are unreserved, no nasty free airline food, the seats in the newest planes don't recline AT ALL, but what do you expect if you can occasionally grab a flight for under a fiver + taxes i.e. return for two = £ 55 ( say 75 euros) from Stansted to Jerez - a 2.5 hour flight.
I can't tell you much about the area near Stansted, where to stay or where to eat - as we live so close we've never had more than breakfast on the way through - and that particular cafe in the airport has now closed. But there are one or two nice pubs in the area, so I have written tips on those.