Top Tips For Paying For Public Transport In London

Paying For Public Transport In London

London is home to one of the most extensive public transport networks in the world, hardly surprising given the size of the city. With 12 tube lines running across 249 miles of rail and 700 bus routes, the 900 square mile city is well equipped for the influx of commuters and tourists that descend upon the city every day. Guests of Bayswater Inn Hotel London are well placed to leverage the brilliant central London public transport connections.

Navigating the London Underground is one thing, but paying for it is quite another. You have several options, each of which comes with its pros and cons, which this blog will explore in more detail below.

Contactless Payment Cards

Contactless payment cards operate in much the same way on the Underground as they do when paying for anything in the shops. London Underground barriers and bus journeys operate via touch pads. On buses you only have to tap in, but on the underground you will have to tap both in and out to calculate your journey price.

Oyster Cards

Returning guests of the Bayswater Inn London hotel with breakfast might have seen the Oyster card before. The debit card sized blue top up card is a regular staple of London’s public transport. Instead of paying directly with your debit card, you can top up your Oyster at one of the many machines located around the station. This helps you keep on top of your outgoings and also comes with a range of extra benefits that are unavailable to debit card users.

These benefits include Oyster card link ups with UK rail cards, making for travel deals that are as great value as special offer London hotels. The Under 25, the Under 30 and the Senior Railcards all allow for up to a third off train ticket prices. They can also be attached to your Oyster card so you can enjoy 30% off of off peak travel on the tube and bus. We’ll talk more about the differences in a moment.

Travel Cards

Oyster cards also benefit from being the vessel through which visitors can buy tube and bus travel cards. However, it’s worth noting that the only time these deals are better value for money than single fares is if you buy a week long travel card which you plan to use at least three times a day in 6 days of a week. You can buy travel cards for a day, a week, month and even a year.

Peak Time Pricing

London’s peak times take place between 6.30 am and 9.30 am and in the afternoon between 4 pm and 7 pm. To accommodate the rush of commuters and students between these hours, more tubes run per minute, and this means that fares are raised by a third. Railcard Oyster linkup discounts will not apply to peak times.

London Zones

Guests of London accommodation offers are well situated to make the most of Zone 1 travel, but did you know there are 6 zones in London? Running in concentric rings around the city centre, the more zones you travel through, the more expensive your journey will be.