OYSTER CARD LONDON: ALL ABOUT HOW TO USE THE UNDERGROUND AND DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THE CARDS
The cheapest and fastest transport to move around the city is the underground with Oyster card (without card you’ll pay £ 4,90 for one journey) you can also use on buses, but you must know that the traffic in London is very busy and in my opinion, you’ll waste too much time. In this mini guide I’ll try to explain you just the most important things that can be useful for you as a tourist, in order not to create too much confusion with too much information.
NB: in London I never used tram or buses, so I don’t have enough information to give you, excepto for the fares you’ll find below in the post.
The maximum you’re going to spend by underground to reach the central zones (zone 1 and 2) is 7 pound per head per day, this is the Daily Price Cap in 2019, that is the upper limit to spending in a day, even if you continue travelling; the last year it was 20 cents less!
Until 10 years old the card i s free, between 11 and 15 you pay the half: this point isn’t so clear to me because someone says that for this kind of ticket can’t be purchased in London, but you have to require it a month before leaving sending a ID photo of the guy to the site Transport For London, while other sites like this one say that you can ask the man in the underground to obtain the discount. You should informed yourself because in our case, even if our daughter was 11, could use the underground without paying: it depends on wthe person you find.
All Oyster fares for wvery means of transport (munderground, DLR, Overground, trains) according to the different zones you pass and “Daily Price Cap” (updated to 2019):
YOU COULD BE ALSO INTERESTED IN: TRAVEL TO SOUTH ENGLAND – HOW TO SPARE, TO OBTAIN DISCOUNTS ON THE ATTRACTIONS AND OUR ITINERARY
OYSTER: HOW TO GET IT AND HOW YOU CAN RECHARGE
To the machines in the underground to obtain the card and to recherge it. To save time I asked one of the employees, always at the turnstiles ready to help you in case of need: he got the cards for us! Then, just to see your remaining credit, you simply place the card on the circle yellow reader on the lower right. You can recharge your Oyster in three ways: I chose the first one, “Pay As You Go”.
♣PAY AS YOU GO: you can charge with an amount you want and every time you pass through the turnstiles, your amount for that destination will be deducted (in general you’ll travel within the zones 1/2, the central ones; the more you are far from the centre zones, the more the deducted amount erases). Valid on all means of transport: bus, underground, DLR, trains (except trains from/to the airport), and on ferry boats but only of the “Thames Clippers” company with discounted fares.
♠TRAM & BUS PASS: for unlimited travels only on tram and buses.
♥TRAVELCARD: this is a pass (subscription) you can charge on your Oyster Card but it’s available only for a week, a month or a year not less, and you don’t charge it every time like in the case “Pay as you go”. So if you stay in London less than a week, the “Pay as You Go” option is better, if you stay longer the Travelcard is more convenient. Valid also this one on buses, underground, DLR, ecc… and on the ferries of ALL COMPANIES.
There’s also a travelcard you can use just for one day but it’s a simple paper ticket, it isn’t the pass I’ve just told you above that can be recherged on Oyster! There’s no difference if you have the pass on your travelcard (valuable MINIMUM for a week) or the single day paper ticket: both permit you to move with every means of transport, but the paper ticket has the National Rail symbol, like the train tickets, so you can obtain the 2X1 offer for the attractions in London. It depends on what you want to do and understand what it’s more convenient for you!
♦CONTACTLESS: it’s also possible to use a credit card to debit the amount of the travel, but the card has to be released only in the UK.
OYSTER: HOW YOU CAN USE IT
Every time you travel, you must pass the Oyster on the yellow reader, in the way the picture’s showing you. This operation has to be made when you enter from the turnstiles to go to the platforms, and also when you gou outside.
HOW TO GET BACK THE REMAINING CREDIT AND THE DEPOSIT OF £5 FOR EVERY CARD
Always to the machines in the underground. You place the card on the yellow reader on the lower right, like if you’re verifying your remaining credit, in the end click REFUND and CONFIRM.
Attention: to have the money back, you must have no more than £10 on the card and you have to use the biggest machines on the left, because the other two narrow don’t work for the “refund”.
VISITOR OYSTER CARD
There’s also another card, the “VISITOR OYSTER CARD”: it’s similar to the Oyster I’ve just told you, and it can be used also to have discounts on restaurants, shops and the cable car Emirates Air Line, but seems to be a tourist trap:
- it’s not economically convenient because you can’t buy it in London but you can only receive it at home, so there’s a shipping cost (not refunded)
- the cost of 5 pound per card won’t be refunded, while in the “classic” Oyster the £5 are apart on the card and you’ll have them back at the end of your holiday;
Cart valid on all means of transport and TOWARDS APT HEATHROW, GATWICK AND LONDON CITY, except Luton and Stansted . FOR MORE INFO CLICK HERE
UNDERGROUND LINES IN LONDON
The underground lines in London are 11. Here their names and colours:
Plus there are other two, completely integrated in the underground net:
- DLR (Docklands Light Railway): it covers the East areas of London and you can catch it at the following tube stations: Bank, Tower Hill, Shadwell, Stratford, Bow, Heron Quays, Canning Town, Canary Wharf. It also reaches London City Airport. The DLR trains don’t have a driver, but there’s a ticket inspector who can drive the train in case the computer doesn’t work.
- LONDON OVERGROUND: it covers the West zone of London travelling on the surface. It often travels in the 2 zone where are the most attractions.
Using the underground in London isn’t so easy: at first impact it’s a chaos, you need to get used to. The simplest lines for us were the yellow (Circle Line) and green (Discrtict Line) that are together, while the most difficult was the black line (Northern Line).
In the underground there are references to the cardinal points to understand which direction to follow in the tunnel: EASTBOUND, WESTBOUND, NORTHBOUND, SOUTHBOUND.
I can’t orient myself even at home, think how I could orient myself in the London underground! No fear: there are usually two panels one close the other: they both have a list of the various stops. You just verify under which of the two panels your destination is insert, and read at the top of the panel which of the four directions you have to take; in the end you follow the signs for that destination. This way you can’t make mistakes!
In the end I suggest you to have an underground map on hand because sometimes the tube is so crowded that you can’t even reach the map on the walls!
THANKS TO READ UNTIL HERE: how can you help me?
I would be very important for me if you could write two words about houw you’ve found the article leaving your rate. You’ll find the button [CREATE YOUR OWN REVIEW] at the bottom of this page.
Otherwise, if you don’t have time, you could simply leave a comment here below my post, a like on the social networks or share this article to let it know to as many people as possible.
IF YOU NEED MORE INFO WRITE ME TO: email@example.com
IF YOU WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT ME: click here
TO SURF THE BLOG AND FOLLOW IT BY MAIL: click on the three stripes above this article on your left, as the photo below shows. You’ll find categories, our itineraries, general info about the blog.
THE MEANING OF TRAVEL FOR ME
In the last years I follow what Dalai Lama says:” At least once a year go to a place you’ve never been before”.
After years of sufferings and sacrifices, I’ve decided that life is too short and too unpredictable to continue waiting to do what I like and what makes me happy.
I like exploring the world where I live, take photos of it in general but also in its details, film it to hold back those subtle emotions that you could forget over time, and in the end share with you what I’ve seen and felt through my articles.
Travel is for me Love – Freedom – Gratitude
Submit your review