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London Transport Frequently Asked Questions


For a map of the travel zones in London Underground and National Rail  please click here

What is cheaper for my upcoming trip to London, the London Travelcard?, or the Visitor Oyster Card?
It really depends on how long you plan to be in London and how frequently you plan to use public transport. If you are in London for more than 4 days and plan to use the tube and buses on a daily basis then a 7 day Travelcard might be the most cost effective option. If you plan to stay in London for a shorter time an Oyster Card might be preferable.

I’m confused about which type of Travelcard I should purchase. Please Help!
This depends on exactly which parts of London you intend to travel in as London is divided up into travel ‘zones’ and there are 6 zones. A Travelcard entitles you to unlimited journeys within the zones you have a Travelcard for. The heart of central London such as the West end and city of London are in Zones 1-2. Heathrow Airport is in zone 6, so if you wanted to travel from Heathrow Airport into central London (by taking the Piccadilly Line) you would need to purchase a zones 1-6 Travelcard. The journey time from Heathrow Airport into central London takes around 45 – 50 minutes.

Is a 7 day Travelcard valid for flexible days, or consecutively?
A 7 day Travelcard(s) is valid on consecutive days only.

Where can I purchase a Travelcard?  
You can purchase many different types of Travelcards on our online shop for either 1 day of travel or for one week (7 days). It is only possible to purchase a 7 day paper Travelcard online and not at any London Underground Stations.

Why do you ask for the ‘start’ date on a Travelcard?
A Travelcard is a paper ticket which gets validated with a date stamp when we are fulfilling your order. The Travelcard is valid for it period of validity from this start date only and cannot be used before or after that date. If you are purchasing a weekly Travelcard(s), two dates are stamped on the Travelcard(s) – one for the start date and one for the end date.

Will the Travelcard have my name on it?
No, your Travelcard will not have your name written upon it.

I have received my 7 day Travelcard order and I have read that is says “valid only when shown with a photo card”. What is this and where do I get one from?
You can now ignore this as it is an old policy on 7 day travelcards whic no longer applies so you will not need an accompanying photo card.

My London Travelcard(s) has arrived but are stamped with the wrong date, what should I do?
Please refer to our Terms and Conditions .

I have just placed my order but I have ordered the wrong tickets?
If this is the case, please inform us immediately by sending an email, and we will cancel your order and you can place a new order for the correct product(s) We will not replace, exchange, or refund any Travelcards after they have been dispatched from our warehouse so it is very important that you that you advise us of any issue with your order prior to dispatch.

Can a travelcard be shared with someone else when traveling together?
One Travelcard is required for each person traveling.

Is there a family Travelcard available?
No, family travelcards do not exist. However, you can buy both adult and child Travelcards from our website.

Can I use my Travelcard(s) to travel on the Emirates Air Line (Thames Cable Car)?
Please note you cannot use your London Travelcard on the Emirates Air Line. Passengers with a Travelcard must buy a boarding pass at one of the terminals and you will need to queue up.  You will need to be in possession of a Visitor Oyster Card to use the Emirates Air Line.

Are there discounted ticket prices for Senior Citizens?
We are unable to offer discounts for Seniors (excluding London residents).

Are there discounted ticket prices for Students?
There are student discounts available but these have to be applied for more than a month in advance (via Transport for London) and each application is subject to a £10.00 administrative fee.

I have read somewhere that there are group tickets available. Where can I get these?
Group Day Tickets can only be purchased from a London Underground train station and not in advance online.
The Group Day Tickets can be used on the London Underground, London Overground, Docklands Light Railway and some National Rail services. Group day tickets cannot be used on London buses. While using this ticket, the individuals must stay in groups of 10 or more.

Buy a Travelcard


Visitor Oyster Cards

For a map of the travel zones in London Underground and National Rail  please click here

I am coming to London for a long weekend. How much credit will I need on my Oyster card?
For a 2 day trip to London we advise that you purchase a £20 Oyster Card.

Are there any time restrictions when using the Visitor Oyster Card?
You can use the Visitor Oyster Card at any time. Please note that prices vary depending on what time you travel. Travelling during rush hour tend to cost a little bit more than travelling off-peak. Rush hour is Monday to Friday between 06.30 to 09.30 and 16.00 to 19.00. Off Peak is all other times including public holidays.

Can more than one person share a Visitor Oyster Cards between them when traveling together?
No. One Visitor Oyster Card is required per person when traveling.

Can I use the Visitor Oyster Card as soon as I buy it?
Yes, once you have received your Oyster Card it is ready to use.

Will the Oyster Card have my name on it?
No, your Oyster Card will not have your name written upon it.

Do I need to provide a passport photo to buy a Visitor Oyster Card?

If you purchase a Visitor Oyster Card from our website, you do not need to provide a passport photo.

Can I top up my Visitor Oyster Card Online?
At present you cannot top up your Visitor Oyster Card online. However, you can top up your Oyster card ONLY at Tube stations and at almost 3800 Oyster Ticket Stops throughout London.

Is the Visitor Oyster Card valid from Heathrow?
Yes. Heathrow Airport is in Zone 6 and you can use your Oyster Card on the Tube (by taking the Piccadilly Line) into central London.

I bought a Visitor Oyster Card a couple of years ago, can I still use this when I come to London?
Yes, this will still be valid for you to use - You can top it up when you get to London at the ticket machines or ticket kiosks at any London Underground Station.

Can I use my Visitor Oyster Card(s) to travel on the Emirates Air Line (Thames Cable Car)?
Yes you can, the cost per journey is £3.20 but be advised that the Thames Cable Car fares will not be included in the Oyster daily capping.

Can I get a refund of any unused credit at the end of my trip to the UK?
If you send the card(s) back to the address below, you can get a refund of any remaining credit. Please remember to include a covering letter explaining why you are returning them. You will then be sent a cheque in GBP.
TfL Customer Services, 14 Pier Walk, 4th Floor, London, SE10 0ES United Kingdom

Buy a Visitor Oyster Card

Example Travel Costs for the Visitor Oyster Card and the Travelcard in GBP

Visitor Oyster Card and the Travelcard costs

Prices in red are available exclusively through VisitBritain Shop. Note: tickets must be used before 30th April 2015.

London Transport

London Underground
The Underground, commonly known as the Tube, is London’s metro system. Central London has a large concentration of stations, and many popular attractions are served by a nearby Tube station. The Underground also extends in all directions to suburban areas. All major National Rail stations are served by the Underground, as is Heathrow Airport.

London Overground
The Overground is a network of suburban rail routes that mostly serve the areas just outside central London but also extend to the far north and south of London. A recent extension means that the network now forms a full circle around the city centre, and many stations interchange with the Underground and DLR.

London Buses
London has more than 700 bus routes, with around 7,500 buses and nearly 20,000 bus stops. Route information is displayed at bus stops and on buses.

Tramlink is south London’s tram network. It connects to the Overground at West Croydon and the Underground at Wimbledon, in addition to various National Rail interchanges.

The Docklands Light Railway, usually abbreviated to DLR, is a light rail system serving the east and south-east of the city. It has interchanges with the rest of the transport network at various points, notably at Bank which has connections to five Underground lines. London City Airport is in Zone 3 on the DLR.

Transport for London manages eight piers on the River Thames, offering a variety of commuter, ferry and leisure services. Leisure services are aimed at visitors and many stops are near major attractions.

National Rail
National Rail services are not operated by Transport for London – the organisation that operates all the above services – but Oyster Cards and Travelcards are valid on National Rail services within the Transport for London travel zones. London’s major National Rail stations are Paddington, Euston, Kings Cross St. Pancras, Liverpool Street, London Bridge, Charing Cross, Waterloo and Victoria; all are located in Zone 1.

Emirates Air Line
The Emirates Air Line is a cable car crossing the River Thames in east London. The cable car runs between Emirates Royal Docks on the north of the river, to Emirates Greenwich Peninsula (near the O2 Arena) on the south.