Close to 20 million passengers fly from Stansted each year, on both charter and scheduled services – in particular, the airport is a major hub for Ryanair, whose flights dominate the third of the main terminal’s three satellite buildings. Architecturally, Stansted is innovative, with an open, single-level terminal designed by Foster and Partners. There’s a great range of high-street stores and Duty Free shopping, and food ranges from great-value pub grub to British tapas and cocktails at Cabin. Stansted Airport station is as central as you could wish for – the platforms are located beneath the terminal building. The Stansted Express service departs from Liverpool Street every 15 minutes, reaching Stansted Airport in around 45. You can also join the train at Tottenham Hale, where there is a connection to the Victoria Line. An hourly CrossCountry service connects the airport to destinations in the midlands, including Birmingham, Leicester and Cambridge.
Find out more about trains to Stansted Airport
It’s a quick journey from the platform to the terminal – lifts and escalators will whisk you to check-in desks in a matter of minutes. If you’re meeting someone, domestic arrivals are to the left as you enter the building, and international arrivals to the right. It’s also well worth buying your train tickets ahead, as ticket machines and counters at the become busy at peak times. With trains departing regularly you’re unlikely to need the waiting room, but you’ll find it on platform one.