Europa Gatwick Hotel, Gatwick

britannia hotel europa gatwick

Where not to stay at Gatwick Airport

When EasyJet give you the opportunity to stay over in a hotel because they messed everything up with your return home, well you don’t say no. Especially when it is 11 pm and you are stuck at Gatwick. Being stuck at Gatwick is what you would have to be in order to stay at Europa Gatwick Hotel, here is why. It’s a Britannia Hotel, and if you know, you know.

Outside, the gardens and building look like a Mediterranean hacienda, it looks quite appealing once you ignore all the random car parking.

outside Britannia Europa Gatwick main entrance

We arrived at around to the sight of not only a security guard at the door, but kids running around, as in teenage kids. Not really what you are wanting to see when you just need a sleep.

Even though the room was booked direct by EasyJet, we had to wait for a room to be allocated. So some time for a much needed pint, we were hungry, but there was no food to be had except a vending machine and some crisps. So crisps for dinner it was. Thanks EasyJet.

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Our room was ready, and thanks to reception staff we wouldn’t be near the teenagers. We explained our lovely journey so far and they were like, oof you need a sleep!

So off we went to the lodge area which is at the rear of the building.

parking at Britannia Hotel Europa Gatwick

As you can see it is set in lovely, well maintained surroundings.

britannia hotel britannia lodge outside

The security door isn’t secure and you are greeted by a laundry holder, you know the ones you see when housekeeping are around? Nitpicking I know, but you don’t expect to see stuff just lying about.

So to the room.

britannia hotel europa gatwick

This was for two people, or should we say one person for a night. Imagine staying here any longer? The vintage furniture looked good, but not here. It just added to the unloved feeling. The carpet felt sticky and there was a distinct musty smell throughout the building and even more in the rooms.

Thankfully a kettle with tea and coffee, not salubrious, not even the coffee in a little dish but in its own plastic bag.

britannia hotel europa gatwick kettle

The bathroom had everything we needed, some soap, body gel and towels. It also had some dodgy mouldy sealant and broken fixtures as a bonus. Good point was that the water pressure and temperature was good.

britannia hotel europa gatwick bathroom
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We also had the added bonus of a random drunk wandering up and down the hall, spitting onto the carpet. Just as well that security guard is wandering about….. We attempted to phone reception, but even with decades of telephone experience including as a receptionist didn’t help with working the telephone. Resorting to the age old, head out the door asking if they were OK sorted it out, but it really shouldn’t have. He also tried to open the door the mothers room luckily nothing happened but its still not what you expect.


OK if you are needing somewhere for an early flight and you really arent particular about where you are staying. The Europa Gatwick is about 5 miles away from Gatwick Airport and costs approx £18.50 for a taxi.

Otherwise, avoid.


Europa Gatwick Hotel, Balcombe Rd, Gatwick RH10 7ZR

where not to stay at gatwick airport



I am Emma and with my husband Mark write Foodie Explorers, which is a food and travel website.

I am a member of the Guild of Food Writers and British Guild of Travel Writers.

We have a wide range of judging experience covering products, hotels and have judged, for example, for Great Taste Awards and Scottish Baker of the Year.

Along the way Mark gained WSET Level 2 in Wine and I have WSET Level 2 in Spirits as well as picking up an award with The Scotsman Food and Drink Awards.    

Usually I can be found sleeping beside a cat.

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