8 SEPTEMBER 2001, Page 63

Q. May I pass on a tip to readers? I

always take a minicab to Heathrow (from my house in Kensington) for the obvious reason that it is cheaper than a black cab. On the return journey, however, it is difficult to use a minicab because of the nuisance of not knowing at what time you will emerge from baggage collection, where to arrange to meet the driver, etcetera. The thing to do is to make your way to the departures area, where streams of people are being dropped by minicabs, and simply ask a driver, as I do. Will you take me back to central London for £20 including tip?' They always agree.

AC., London W8 A. Thank you for this genuinely useful tip. In safety terms, minicabs are, of course, not a patch on our trusty old black cabs, the drivers of which can be depended on to deliver the most priceless goods to any destination without risk. Incidentally, a minicab firm named Simply Airports (020 7701 4321) operates a perfectly good service to Heathrow from central London. The fee from Kensington is £18.