Fares changes for 2015

The new fares take effect today and thus many of the pages on this site need updating.  I have made some changes already and will be expanding others when I am sure of the detail.  I will not be amending any comments or replies prior to 2015.

39 thoughts on “Fares changes for 2015”

  1. Hi
    A lot of the publicity for the new fares suggested that the daily caps for will be a 20% of the cost of the weekly travelcard but this doesn’t seem to be correct when I look at the 2015 fares PDF. I travel between zones 2-5 so a week travelcard is £31.90 but the daily price cap is £10.90, which is higher than suggested.
    Please can you clarify…have I misunderstood?

    • Hi Shai,

      The problem is that there are no daily caps which exclude zone 1. The £10.90 is actually zones 1-5.

  2. your customer service centre told me the flexibl fares don’t come in until April?
    Is this correct or are they working now

    • Hi Keith,

      I have no idea what you’re talking about, sorry. This site is independent of TfL and as such has no customer service centre.

  3. Hi Mike
    Thanks for your helpful site. I will be travelling from waterloo to basingstoke for a couple of months and will also need to use zone 2 underground for door to door. What ticket should i buy? Thanks a million

    • Hi Sara,

      If you are commuting then you should get a Basingstoke to London zones 1-6 travelcard route via Woking. This covers any travel within zones 1-6 but the extra over a SWT season costs less than 10 single zone 1 journeys. A quirk of the fares system means that travelcard zones have to be the destination on a season, but you can use it either way round.

  4. I’m a little confused regarding the new fares. Last Saturday I made the following return journey:

    One bus journey, then East Croydon to Victoria on Southern and Victoria line to Kings Cross. For this I was charged £10.60.

    Yesterday (Thursday) I walked into Croydon before getting Southern to Victoria and the Victoria line to Oxford Circus. On the return leg I did the same train journey and then caught the bus home. The outward train journey began in the afternoon peak and ended off-peak after 7.00pm. For this I was also charged £10.60. According to the TFL website the all-day cap for zones 1-5 is £10.90.

    Can you elaborate?

    • Hi Phil,

      No, that has me stumped as well. I’d be interested in the detailed journey history to see what it thought it was charging at each stage.

  5. Thanks Mike. My journey history shows the following (all payments using contactless).

    Saturday 10th:

    06:52 bus journey £1.50
    07:07-07:43 East Croydon-Kings Cross LU (Tube) £4.60
    18:59-19:33 Kings Cross LU (North)-East Croydon £4.50
    19:45 bus journey £0.00

    Thursday 15th:

    18:55-19:30 East Croydon-Oxford Circus £4.60
    22:46-23:18 Oxford Circus-East Croydon £4.60
    23:32 bus journey £1.40

    On both days it says “Some journeys were cheaper or free today because you reached a daily cap”. But as I posted earlier the all-day cap for zones 1-5 would appear to be £10.90 rather than £10.60.

    I’m now also intrigued as to why the return from Kings X to Croydon was 10p cheaper than the outward leg??!!

    • Hi Phil,

      How odd. It looks like there might be an error in the daily cap for zones 1-5. The return from KX was 10p cheaper because that’s when you hit the cap; likewise the bus was cheaper on Thursday by the same amount.

  6. Doh! sorry I should have realised where the cap was hit without having to ask that question! (It’s getting late in the day!)

  7. Hi Mike,
    Thanks for all your help, this is a great site.
    My question is, I want to get from Reigate to Epsom by bus (as it may be cheaper) I know the 460 Bus goes from Reigate (at stop U) via Tadworth all the way to the Epsom Clock Tower in about 40min..but I’m not sure if Oyster Cards are accepted on this bus? Can you help?

    • Hi Eileen,

      It doesn’t accept Oyster cards, and it takes nearer an hour from Reigate to Epsom, and it’s only hourly.

  8. Looks like someone may have been tinkering as was charged £10.90 for my travel on Saturday.

  9. Hi,

    I travel from Surbiton to High St Kensington via Wimbledon using Oyster most days. Depart after 9.30 am (£5.10), Return from HSK around 5.45 pm (£3.40). Last year this journey cost £8.50 per day . Since January it has been costing me £11.70 per day (£5.20/£6.50). I don’t understand the explanation that the Oyster Helpline gave me today. Please can you help me. This is a huge increase which I need to reduce urgently.

    • Hi Sara,

      I feel your pain. The main reason for the increase is the change to the pricing of the off-peak daily cap. Last year it was £8.50, this year it is £11.70. The other problem is that your journey involves both NR and TfL services and is thus subject to the premium charge for mixing modes on a journey involving zone 1.

      There are some ways to reduce the daily cost but they all involve a change to your journey. One option is to split the journey at East Putney which is dual zoned 2/3. You’d need to get off at East Putney and touch out and back in again. Fares would be £2.40 + £2.30 + £2.90 + £3.40 = £11.00. Another would be to change at Vauxhall which has special fares because it’s dual zoned 1/2 and the NR part ends at zone 2 with the TfL part only in zone 1. Fares are £4.90 + £6.30 = £11.20. You’d need to change Underground trains at Victoria.

      I guess these savings aren’t really enough, so to reduce it further you have to think outside the box a bit. If you get off at Earls Court having arrived from Wimbledon you haven’t actually used zone 1 at all. Fares from Surbiton are £2.60 and £4.00. Can you walk from there? A bus each way would add £3.00 making £9.60 total. You could also change at Clapham Junction onto the Overground to Kensington Olympia for the same fares as Earls Court.

      Hope that helps a bit.

  10. Oyster PAYG I travelled from Crayford [I Live In Kent] to Surbiton off peak and was charged £2.45 with my SNR
    No problems. Returning I check in at Surbiton at 15.38 I see the card took £3.45 gave me £1 back at WAT took £5.05 at WAE and returned this at CRY total £2.45. My query is since the fare from Surbiton to London after 9.30 if always off peak
    if I check in at Surbiton at 18.45 and at WAE after 19.00 is the through fare peak or off peak.

    • Hi Len,

      The time of touch in at the start of the journey will set the scale for the whole journey. If you touch in at 1538 then it will be off-peak even though you finish in the peak, while if you start at 1845 then it will be peak even though you finish off-peak. The higher deduction at Waterloo East is because at the start of each leg the system takes up to the maximum incomplete journey charge applicable at the time of that touch in. In your case this was £5.05 because the incomplete charge is £7.50 in the peak and you’d already paid £2.45. It still adjusted it correctly at Crayford.

  11. Hi Mike
    My job will be relocating near Slough station. Can you please let me know the best routes to get there from Uxbridge station, taking into account cost and time.
    I’ve found the following alternatives:
    Bus 7 : £3 each way, not very frequent.
    Bus 58 not sure about the cost, not very frequent.
    Taking the 222 or U1 bus from Uxbridge station to West Drayton station (26mn) then a train to Slough station (11mn).

    • Hi LL,

      The problem with “best” as you hint is that it’s a trade-off between cost and time. At one extreme you could walk at the cost of new shoes every month or so. At the other you could take the Picc to Ealing Common, Dist to Ealing Broadway and FGW to Slough. That might not be any quicker than a bus to West Drayton which is probably the way I’d do it, but it’s the wrong side of London for my local knowledge.

  12. Okay, NOW I’m really confused! As posted earlier I had two days when I was capped at £10.60 rather than £10.90 (see earlier posts for journey details). Then I had a day when I was capped at the expected rate of £10.90. Journey details for this one were: Bus, East Croydon-St Pancras (Thameslink-£3.10), Kings X LU-Seven Sisters (Tube-£2.80), Seven Sisters-Vic-Wallington (£3.50).

    This week, I did: Thursday: Two bus journeys, East Croydon-Vic (NR-£3.10), Victoria LU-Highbury & Islington (£2.30) and Highbury & Islington-Vic-East Croydon (£3.70). Capped at £10.60 again!

    Friday: Three bus journeys, West Croydon-Highbury & Islington (London Overground-£3.10) and Highbury & Islington-Vic-East Croydon (£3.90). Capped at £10.00.

    Something’s definitely amiss in that I can’t work out why I’m being capped at £10.60 on some days and £10.90 on others.

    • Hi Phil,

      I have a hunch what might be going on, but I’d be grateful if you could paste your history from the TfL system into a reply (which I won’t publish) so I can confirm my theory. Was the last cap really £10 or £10.90?

    • Hi Phil,

      Ignore my last, I know exactly what has happened now. Where you have been charged £10.00 or £10.60 you have actually been capped at the zone 1-2 rate plus 2 extension journeys for zones 3-5. Off peak this is £1.50 on TfL or £2.10 on NR/mixed. When you were charged the full £10.90 it was because you did 3 journeys outside zones 1-2 so the cheapest cap was then zone 1-5. Obviously once a cap of any sort has been reached then all bus journeys are free. With contactless the back-office recalculates your days journeys after every journey and decides the best mix of caps and extension journeys. It will even split an OSI and turn one journey into two if it makes it cheaper. Clever, huh!

  13. hi, i would have to make a long journey soon from watford to aldgate then to euston then barnes station then back to watford, could you tell me whether it would be cheaper to get a travel card or to get an oyster card?

    • Hi Hateem,

      An Oyster card will cap at less than the price of the equivalent day travelcard for that sequence.

  14. Thanks Mike. I think I follow you. Although it took looking at my map to realise that Seven Sisters is in zone 3-I always thought it was zone 2. So what you’re saying is that had I gone straight from St Pancras to Kings X and continued on to Seven Sisters (instead of breaking the OSI by meeting my mates for lunch and drinks before going on to the match), I would have been charged £10.60 instead of £10.90? And would I have been charged differently if I was still using Oyster rather than contactless?

    • Hi Phil,

      Yes and yes. Oyster can’t look back at past history so can only work on the zones used.

  15. Hi Mike,
    The single fare finder tells me that the fare from Kilburn Park(z2) to Paddington (z1) is £2.30 at all times – which would suggest that it is a journey entirely in z1. Is this right?I get the same result from Swiss Cottage and St John’s Wood to Baker St, again z2 to z1.

    • Hi Tim,

      There are some short hops which cross the zone 1-2 boundary but are charged as zone 1 only. It only affects peak travel as the off-peak fare is the same anyway.

  16. Mike

    I plan to travel one day midweek after 9.30am so that I may qualify for off-peak travel charges.

    My assumed travel costs are as follows:

    Bexley Rail Station to Southfields Underground – Off Peak: £5.20

    However my return journey is unpredictable and it might fall within the evening peak 4pm-7pm.

    Richmond Rail Station via Waterloo to Bexley Rail Station
    Peak: £6.00
    Off Peak: £3.70

    Representing a total cost of £8.90 or £11.20 at the most.

    However, if there is a change of plan regarding the return journey and my friends decide to make an additional tube journey to Zones 1,2 or 3, would the ‘Oyster Cap’ prevent my fares from exceeding the cost of a One Day Travelcard?

    I understand that One Day paper Travelcards for Zones 1–6 Off Peak are £12.00.
    Is there any advantage in trying to arrange for a One Day Travelcard to be put on my Oyster?

    • Hi Jo,

      The anytime daily cap for zones 1-6 is £11.70. You can’t actually load a day travelcard onto an Oyster card.

  17. Mike

    Many thanks for your prompt reply and for clarifying the situation regarding the daily cap and Travelcards.


  18. Hi again Mike.
    As mentioned elsewhere on the site I’ve found some discrepancies in my travel which don’t match your earlier explanation of capping at either £10.60 or £10.90. Examples:

    1a) 12/02: Bus, East Croydon-Vic (NR), Vic-Highbury&Islington (LU), Highbury&Islington-East Croydon (LU/NR), bus. Capped at £10.60.
    1b) 20/05: East Croydon-Highbury&Islington (NR/LU), Highbury&Islington-East Croydon (LU/NR), bus. Capped at £10.90.

    2a) 25/05: Bus, East Croydon-Green Park (NR/LU), Green-Park-East Croydon (LU/NR), bus. Capped at £10.60.
    2b) 26/05: Bus, bus, East Croydon-Camden Town (NR/LU), Camden Town-East Croydon (LU/NR), bus. Capped at £10.90.

    Does the number of bus journeys and/or their position in the order of travel have an effect?

    • Hi Phil,

      Buses don’t make any difference but the time of train travel does. Zone 3-5 NR fares are £2.70 peak, £2.10 off-peak. If both trips from and to East Croydon are off-peak then that’ll be £6.40 + £2.10 + £2.10 = £10.60. If either one is peak then the £10.90 1-5 cap kicks in.

  19. Ah, that makes more sense now. The ‘b’ examples I quoted were evenings out where the outward journey was made between 4pm and 7pm and the return later in the evening. Thanks for clarifying further and helkping me understand what charge to expect.

  20. Mike

    When using an Oyster Card for the return journey from Bexley to London (Cannon Street /Charing Cross/ London Bridge/ Victoria), I am mindful that the Peak Rate usually applies when travelling 16:00 – 18:59 Monday to Friday. However, I have only recently discovered that there is no afternoon peak rate when travelling from Bexley.
    Apparently there is an exception for travel into central London (zone 1) from an outer zone.

    Please could you clarify the situation where I travel into London after 9.30am and wish to avoid Peak Rate for the return journey to Bexley, must I ensure that I reach London (Cannon Street /Charing Cross/ London Bridge/ Victoria), and actually tap in before 16:00/after 18:59 Monday to Friday?

    • Hi Jo,

      Yes, that’s right. Touch in before 1600 or after 1900 will give you off-peak fares. There is a little leeway to avoid issues with station clocks being wrong so the actual peak period is curtailed by 2-3 minutes at each end.

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