Daily Caps and Travelcards (2016)

This page details all the London wide caps and travelcards which apply to rail travel. These caps apply to all modes: National Rail, Underground, Overground, TfL Rail and DLR. The only rail services within zones 1-9 which are not covered are the Heathrow Express/Connect services between Hayes & Harlington and the Airport [which do not accept Oyster, contactless or travelcards] and Southeastern high-speed between St Pancras International and Stratford International [where Oyster and contactless can be used, but fares charged are additional to any caps and travelcards are only valid if marked Plus HS1].

The first table lists all the daily caps. Where an off-peak figure is coloured red this is the value for part-time workers or regular off-peak travellers. The daily figure can be found in the column to the left. Anyone exceeding the red figure on 2 or more days in one week, 4 or more days in two weeks or 8 or more days in four weeks will be eligible for an automatic refund down to the red figure. These are processed in the week after the Monday to Sunday week that the eligible charges were made and should be collectable on Oyster or credited to the contactless card by the Friday.

All Railcards refers to those that can be added to Oyster: 16-25, Senior, Forces, Disabled and Annual Gold cards. Most refers to the same list apart from Disabled.

Daily Oyster Caps (+Contactless for Adults)
Student 18+
11-15 16+/Jobcentre Plus Most
Zones Anytime Off-peak Anytime Off-peak Anytime Off-peak Anytime Anytime Off-peak
1-2 £6.50 £6.50 £3.25 £1.50 £3.25 £3.25 £6.50 £4.30 £4.30
1-3 £7.60 £7.60 £3.80 £1.50 £3.80 £3.80 £7.60 £5.00 £5.00
1-4 £9.30 £8.60* £4.65 £1.50 £4.65 £4.30* £9.30 £6.15 £5.70*
1-5 £11.00 £9.40* £5.50 £1.50 £5.50 £4.70* £11.00 £7.25 £6.20*
1-6 £11.80 £9.40* £5.90 £1.50 £5.90 £4.70* £11.80 £7.80 £6.20*
1-7 £12.80 £11.90 £6.40 £1.50 £6.40 £5.95 £12.80 £8.45 £7.85
1-8 £15.20 £11.90 £7.60 £1.50 £7.60 £5.95 £15.20 £10.05 £7.85
1-9 £16.90 £11.90 £8.45 £1.50 £8.45 £5.95 £16.90 £11.15 £7.85

*Figures in red are the effective caps for regular off-peak users after the automatic refunds have been allocated. The actual on-the-day caps are as shown in the column to the left of the red figure.

The second table lists all the paper travelcards. Note that there is no off-peak zone 1-4, use the zone 1-6 instead.

Daily Paper Travelcards
All Adults Children 5-15 All Railcards
Zones Anytime Off-peak Anytime Off-peak Anytime Off-peak
1-4 £12.10 £6.00 £12.10
1-6 £17.20 £12.10 £8.60 £6.00 £17.20 £8.00
1-9 £21.70 £12.90 £10.80 £6.40 £21.70 £8.50

The third table lists the different season ticket prices. There are no single zone travelcard seasons. If the required combination isn’t shown (eg 5-7) then the price is the same for a larger zonal coverage (in this case 4-7). If only zone 2 is required then choose 2-3, for only zone 6 it is 5-6. Adult and Child (5-15) travelcards can be bought on paper. 16+, Jobcentre, Apprentice and Student 18+ travelcards all require the appropriate Oyster photocard to be held.

Travelcard seasons
Adult 11-15/16+/Jobcentre* Apprentice/Student 18+
Zones Weekly Monthly Annual Weekly Monthly Annual* Weekly Monthly Annual
1-2 £32.40 £124.50 £1,296 £16.20 £62.30 £648 £22.60 £86.80 £904
1-3 £38.00 £146.00 £1,520 £19.00 £73.00 £760 £26.60 £102.20 £1,064
1-4 £46.50 £178.60 £1,860 £23.30 £89.50 £932 £32.50 £124.80 £1,300
1-5 £55.20 £212.00 £2,208 £27.60 £106.00 £1,104 £38.60 £148.30 £1,544
1-6 £59.10 £227.00 £2,364 £29.60 £113.70 £1,184 £41.30 £158.60 £1,652
1-7 £64.20 £246.60 £2,568 £32.10 £123.30 £1,284 £44.90 £172.50 £1,796
1-8 £75.90 £291.50 £3,036 £38.00 £146.00 £1,520 £53.10 £204.00 £2,124
1-9 £84.20 £323.40 £3,368 £42.10 £161.70 £1,684 £58.90 £226.20 £2,356
2-3, 3-4, 4-5, 5-6 £24.30 £93.40 £972 £12.20 £46.90 £488 £17.00 £65.30 £680
2-4, 3-5, 4-6 £26.80 £103.00 £1,072 £13.40 £51.50 £536 £18.70 £71.90 £748
2-5, 3-6 £32.20 £123.70 £1,288 £16.10 £61.90 £644 £22.50 £86.40 £900
2-6 £40.50 £155.60 £1,620 £20.30 £78.00 £812 £28.30 £108.70 £1,132
2-7 £42.00 £161.30 £1,680 £21.00 £80.70 £840 £29.40 £112.90 £1,176
2-9 £57.10 £219.30 £2,284 £28.60 £109.90 £1,144 £39.90 £153.30 £1,596
4-7 £30.40 £116.80 £1,216 £15.20 £58.40 £608 £21.20 £81.50 £848
4-9 £51.10 £196.30 £2,044 £25.60 £98.40 £1,024 £35.70 £137.10 £1,428

* Annual seasons are not available on Jobcentre Oyster cards.

60 thoughts on “Daily Caps and Travelcards (2016)”

  1. Thanks for this Mike. I’m sure it didn’t take too long, and it is far easier to understand than TfL’s version, so I don’t know why TfL can’t do this properly themselves…

  2. Hello, just wondered if you know which stations still have TFL ticket offices where a Gold Card can be loaded onto an Oyster card to receive the discount?

    • Just ask the visible staff at any Underground station. Having said that, you’re more likely to get it done at the Central London stations, particularly those attached to NR terminals.

  3. Hi Mike,
    Pls what is the best option to travel from Haggerston Rail Station to Tooting Broadway Underground Station I would prefer avoiding Zone 1

    • Hi Abiola,

      There are no options for travel between those stations avoiding zone 1. If it is a regular commute then you could make two journeys touching out and back in at Stratford, but this would add considerably to the travel time. The direct route is Overground to Clapham High Street then Northern line from Clapham North. To avoid zone 1 you’d need to change at Canonbury, Stratford, Whitechapel or Canada Water and Clapham High Street/North.

  4. Mike,
    Awesome website.

    I travel from Dartford to Tottenham court Road tube station weekdays. Travel at 7.30am and return to Dartford at 7pm. I have been buying paper weekly travelcard for £75.50. I also have railcard but this can’t be applied to adult oyster for weekly, am I correct ?

    What’s the cheapest and best way for me to travel? I’m not sure if oyster is worth my time. Right now I travel from Dartford to Charing cross and then get the tube to Tottenham court road. would pyster payasyougo with my railcard workout cheaper ?


    • Hi Raj,

      I’m assuming that you mean arriving back at Dartford at 7pm rather than leaving Tottenham Court Road at 7pm. If so then the £75.50 ticket is your best bet. Railcards cannot be used to discount any season tickets. They also won’t discount peak single fares on Oyster.

  5. Hi Mike,
    Thank you so much for the keeping up the good works you are doing. We really do appreciate you!
    I am looking to travel from Dartford – Reading (return same day) next Saturday but not sure if Reading in within any zone 6 – 9?
    Would it be cheaper to buy a travel card or use an Oyster card for the trip.
    Thanks for your assistance.

    • Hi Sam,

      Reading is way outside the zonal area and you can’t use Oyster there yet either. An off-peak day return will be your best option.

  6. Does the daily cap of oyster card, e.g 7.60 £ between zones 1-3, apply only for the tube (and rail in general) or it includes a mix of means of transport (e.g bus and tube)?

    • Hi Nik,

      The daily rail caps include all TfL buses throughout London (and beyond where they run and accept Oyster).

  7. HELP

    TfL have stated that they will no longer be accepting “Company Cheques” for annual season tickets.

    How does one now pay for an annual season?
    In this case it is for someone using a “paper” point-to-point ticket (LST-WHC) but the principle is the same, & it also applies to Travelcard zonal seasons -which are even more expensive.
    An employer can & will write a cheque (Interest-free loan) for their employee to use in purchasing a ticket, but this is useless if TfL/LOROL won’t accept a cheque?

    What can be done about this, as many people will soon be affected by this perverse decision.

    Effectively, it will mean the end of a large section of the annual season sales, as people will not be able to raise the sum necessary, rather than taking an employer’s loan …

    • Hi Greg,

      It’s an interesting conundrum. I suggest that maybe the employer concerned needs to discuss with TfL how they can securely carry out the transaction. Perhaps the employer will have to transfer the money to the employee and require sight of the season ticket afterwards as proof that the money hasn’t been squandered elsewhere.

  8. Hi Mike,
    I’m travelling for a week to kingston surrey from camden town every day, 8am-8pm. using rail and underground and bus. Is there a weekly option like an oyster card that would cover all my needs?

    • Hi Dee,

      Yes, you can buy a weekly zone 1-6 travelcard. This can be put on an Oyster card or issued on paper for the same price.

  9. In the past for more then 10 years I have always bought a Annual season ticket (Company Cheque) to commute to work into London from Brentwood Zones 1-9. Now that I am part time I only need to commute only 3 days. Which is the cheapest option to travel from Brentwood to Tooting Broadway,Annual ,Monthly or Pay as you go Oyster. Thank you

  10. Hi Mike,

    Thanks for this. I was wondering if you could advise the cheapest route from Croydon to Rainham (Essex) avoiding zone 1?

    Thanks very much


  11. Hi Mike,

    I’m trying to find out the cheapest cost of commuting from Grays (zone 9) to Crouch Hill, wondering if you can help? I thought about using Oyster as opposed to a monthly season ticket so was trying to locate prices for both to compare. But I can only find Zone 1 pricing information online!


  12. Hi Mike,
    I have some problems on choosing travelcard, oyster or contactless for my journey in London.
    Some background:
    1. Visiting from Monday to Tuesday next week (9 days)
    2. Arrive on Monday with Travelcard (from Brighton)
    3. Between Tuesday and Monday: Most zone 1-2, a few journeys to zone 3 and 5 (Croydon stations), a number of Tram trips. Most originate from zone 2 (Mudchute DLR), and bus connection is needed to reach where I stay from DLR regardless.
    4. Tuesday (Last day): Bus+DLR to London City Airport (use contactless anyway)
    5. I have 16-25 railcard and contactless (Overseas, cheaper than exchange rate if rebate included; I know contactless charge adult fare anyway), and try to avoid oyster as I cannot return the card for refund on the day I leave.
    6. I believe LCY ticket office cannot handle Oyster card refund (?)

    Here is my thinking for the 7 days in between:
    1. Buy a paper travelcard from Tuesday, Z1-3; Exit the station and re-entry when switching to use contactless OR buy extension ticket to NR stations with discount;

    2. Buy Oyster Z1-3 travelcard, load discount and credit, refund at travel centre on last day of validity (Mon); contactless on the rest of the evening and next day.

    3. Simply use contactless each time.

    Which one would work the best for me in this case?

    Some more questions on daily cap:
    a. If I travel Z2-Z5 return + Bus + Tram on contactless, and Bus+Tram reach its cap for definite, is the total fare £4.50+rail fare, and £11 maximum if extra rail journey is taken?
    b. What is the minimum daily cap for fares including Tram? (Travelcard Z1-2 is not valid, is that the same for daily cap?)

    I know there are so much questions in my mind, so thanks very much for your help in advance!


    • Hi Marco,

      I think the Oyster plus PAYG credit and railcard discount will be cheapest. Paper tickets are much more expensive than off-peak fares and extensions using contactless with a paper travelcard will often involve paying for a zone twice. Contactless all the time won’t work because the weekly cap on CPCs is only Monday-Sunday.

      There are various ways to get a refund of any remaining credit and the deposit – full details are here. If you get the refund at Canary Wharf tube station with only a DLR and a bus journey to go then your fares should be less than the value of the £5 deposit. Any earlier and you may well be better off writing off the deposit or applying by post once you have completely finished with it. Or you can keep it for a possible future trip to London.

      Yes, maximum travel charge in a day for zones 1-5 is £11.00. Buses and trams will always cap at £4.50. If you only use trains in zones 1-2 then trams are a bit of a grey area. To get to the tram you need to be in zone 3 so you’d have to use a bus (or walk). The absolute most you would be charged is a zone 1-3 cap of £7.60. Of course the minimum cap involving trams is the £4.50 bus and tram cap.

  13. Hi
    Does the Sunday to Monday cap apply to PAYG Oyster card yet? If not is the best alternative to buy a travelcard ( just travel in zone 2) as I don’t want to use contactless.


  14. Hello,

    I am new to London and I buy weekly/monthly travel card zones 2-3. I live in Homerton (overground) and work in Canada Water (underground) then get the Bus to work, so I change at Stratford.

    I have noticed that there has been a charge every time that I do this journey of £2.40 on top of my travelcard 2-3.

    Homerton and Canada Water is in Zone 2
    Stratford being in Zone 3

    If I have bought a travel card surely i can travel between these zones at no extra cost? But why have I been charged 2.40 each day?

    I really need this o be clarified as I do not understand what I am doing wrong, any help or advice is welcome 🙂

    Kind Regards

    • Hi Julia,

      You need to touch the pink reader on the platforms to/from Homerton at Stratford. That proves you have travelled that way rather than via Canonbury which involves zone 1 at Shoreditch High Street. That will solve your issue.

  15. Hi Mike, I am traveling with my sister from overseas to UK for 7 days, coming on Sat and going back the following Saturday. We are staying in Ware and will travel into London daily. While in London we will most likely stay in central area within zones 1 and 2 to do sightseeing. What would be the most economical tickets for us to purchase? I like the idea of paper travelcard that gives 2-for-1 discounts on many attractions, but is it the best way to go? Thank you in advance

    • Hi Marina,

      If you can make use of a 2-for-1 offer then the £17.40 off-peak day travelcard may well be the best way. If you aren’t going to use an offer then using a contactless payment card will probably be best. You’ll pay for Ware to zone 3 and back at £3.50 each way and then £6.50 for a zone 1-2 cap for any other travel. Try to avoid touching in to return to Ware between 1600-1900 on M-F as that will add £2.10 to the single fare, although you’ll still be better off than the day travelcard.

  16. Hi Mike,

    Please clarify, if can travel on a 7 day Travel Card from Zone 3 to 5, traveling from Chingford to Clapton and back. (Doubt is Clapton appears both in Zone 2 & 3).

    Awaiting your expert advice.



    • Hi Mabel,

      Yes, that’s fine. Clapton is in zone 3 when travelling from Chingford, or zone 2 when travelling from London.

  17. would like to know if it is possible to travel between Ealing and Finchley avoiding zone 1, tfl say it is a cheaper option to travel via Shepherd’s Bush, but I cannot find this route

    • I’ll assume you mean Ealing Broadway and Finchley Central unless you say otherwise. Take the Central line to Shepherd’s Bush*, change onto the Overground to Camden Road, a short walk to Camden Town then Northern line to Finchley Central.

      * The two stations are very close together at Shepherd’s Bush.

  18. Hi, How does the monthly travel card work? Does it just end with each calendar month instead of a set amount of days? Thanks.

    • A monthly ticket runs from the day of issue to the day before in the following month.

  19. Hi Mike

    I’m hoping you can help.

    I’m trying to find out what season ticket would be the best option for my commute to work.
    I’d be travelling from Grays to Morden weekly during peak times.
    I usually get off at Limehouse get the DLR to Bank and connect to the Northern Line that way.
    Are you able to help with season ticket prices?

    • Hi Steph,

      You have two choices, both of which need to be on paper sadly, because the Oyster system can’t cope with the Grays area travelcard prices. For your existing journey you need Grays to zones 1-6 which is £84.60/week. You can save some money by getting Grays to zones 2-6 which is £54.90/week. To avoid zone 1 you need to change at Limehouse, Shadwell, take London Overground to Clapham High Street then the Northern line from Clapham North. Both interchanges at Shadwell and Clapham are signposted and take 1-2 minutes to walk.

  20. Hello ! What travelcard do I need if i want to travel from Vauxhall to Earsfield and back ? Regards

    • The journey between Vauxhall and Earlsfield does not involve zone 1, so you just need zones 2-3. If you only need to use SWT (ie no buses or tubes) then a paper rail only season ticket may be better value.

  21. Tkank you very much for your reply ! I was confused because Vauxhall is zone 1 and 2 and I didn’t know how this works .

    • Basically, if you travel to or from Waterloo or Pimlico (on the Victoria line) then you need zone 1. If you travel to or from Clapham Junction or Brixton then it’s zone 2.

  22. Hi MIke
    my son is due to start a job in covent garden soon, travelling from wanstead ( central line); it’s likely to be 3 or 4 days a week possibly flexi hours starting after 10am; he needs to get a bus from home to the tube station and back. What’s the most cost effective oyster travel for him to purchase? Thank you so much, this help is fantastic.

    • Hi Cass,

      You don’t say how old your son is. If he’s 16-17 then he can get a 16+ zip Oyster card and pay half fares. Otherwise it’s an adult Oyster and just use PAYG. A weekly travelcard is only worthwhile if you travel 5 days and a bit extra. A monthly or longer period travelcard may save some money but again he’ll need to use it at least 4 and sometimes 5 days every week.

  23. Hi mike, So i travel in zone 1-3 everyday on my work placement. I am legible for the 18+ oyster-card. but this does not seem like it will save me any money when I am travelling (as i travel in peak time every day) ?
    Is there another option, as I am just hitting the £7.60 cap everyday?
    Thank you! Looking forward to hearing back from you 🙂

    • Hi Sorcha,

      The 18+ Oyster card only discounts travelcards. Single fares and caps are at the adult rate. If you buy a zone 1-3 travelcard for a week it will only cost £22.60.

  24. Hi Mike,
    I need to travel from Milton keynes central to Canary wharf on all weekdays starting from next month.Can you please suggest the options ..

    • Hi Anil,

      Milton Keynes to zones 1-6 travelcard will allow travel on fast trains to Euston then Underground. If money is tight then lose zone 1 and you need to take slower trains and change at Willesden Junction and Stratford.

  25. Hi Mike.
    I need to travel every weekday from Willesden Green to Queenstown Road (Battersea). Please can you advise me of the cheapest option to get around. It seems as though just topping up my Oyster card will cost a lot more than a zones 1-2 travel card because I have to touch out and back in again at Waterloo as I change from underground to south west trains. Is this correct? I really don’t want to spend a load of money if there is a cheaper option. Any advise you can give will be very much appreciated.

    • Hi Emma,

      You aren’t actually charged two journeys when you change at Waterloo, but it may feel like it because mixing SWT and LU in that way is charged a premium fare. It is, however, still cheaper than the two single fares added together. And yes, with that journey a zones 1-2 travelcard will save you money.

      You can do the journey cheaper by avoiding zone 1, but it may well take a bit longer. From Willesden Green change at West Hampstead (or Kilburn to Brondesbury with a slighly longer walk), then take the Overground to Clapham Junction (possibly changing again at Willesden Junction) and finally SWT to Queenstown Road. Peak fare is £2.00 each way.

  26. Hi Mike,

    I am going to travel from Ewell West to Hyde park corner or to Victoria station Monday to Friday. Could you please advise me what is the best option? I have oyster card by the way.

    Many thanks.


    • Hi Erica,

      If you can keep just to National Rail then a Ewell West to London Terminals season ticket is probably the best option. If you must use the tube or any buses then a travelcard on your Oyster will be best.

  27. I recently had to travel from Battersea to Stratford for the Velodrome. Used Google maps to get best route (don’t trust timings with TFL). Route was via Victoria to St Pancras and then the HS1 to Stratford International.
    Very nice train but quite a hit to my PAYG at additional £5.40 – I didn’t know it wasn’t part of the Oyster Cap and so much more expensive!! 🙁
    Is that right? Why no warning anywhere that it’s not part of normal cap and charged so much more!
    So a warning for others not to make the same mistake to get to Stratford quickly!

    • Hi Dorthe,

      I’m sorry to hear about your experience. Personally I wouldn’t trust Google with transport planning, but it’s not necessarily clear on TfL either. If you check fares on my fare finder it does make clear that the high speed fare is special and cannot be combined with any other travel.

      In your situation I would be inclined to write to both TfL and Southeastern asking why it isn’t made clearer.

  28. Hello i am traveling everyday from goodmayes to Hammersmith…. haw much will be cost if I cut monthly ticket . I am confused because I live in goodmayes which is in zone 4 from hare I go to Liverpoolstreet by TfL and then I take Hammersmith and city line from Liverpool Street? Could you please reply ?

    • Hi Sadia,

      As the page above says, the monthly zone 1-4 travelcard costs £178.60 for adults.

  29. Hi Mike,
    I am usually charged £7.20 capped on PAYG for my journey from Crouch End (bus) to Finsbury Park then tube to White City. However on the days I stay at my partners in Bounds Green, it has recently been charging me £12.60 – is this because I have on occasion got the overground from Bowes Park to Finsbury Park and then jumped on the tube ? I haven’t touched in between train and tube on this part of the journey as I assumed it would see what zone I got on at and off at?? can you help ? thank you

    • Hi Charlotte,

      If you touch out at Finsbury Park NR and don’t touch in again at the LU station then it might cause a problem. Can you please send me a copy of your journey history from sample days. I can’t quite work out how either of your totals (£7.20 or £12.60) might be achieved, so I need to see what the system is saying.

  30. I’m a student and I travel from zone 7 (Watford) to zone 1 (Aldgate) every week day. I’m s=currently paying £11.20 per day, does anyone know of a cheaper travel card alternative?

    • Hi Matt,

      If you are eligible for a student Oyster card then use that to get discounted weekly/monthly travelcards. If not then the single fares are cheaper than an adult travelcard.

  31. Hi Mike

    I will be travelling from shenfield to St Paul’s Monday through Friday, tapping in at 6.15..tapping back in at 1600..what fare will I be charged as I am tapping in before the peak at 6.30.


    • The fare at 0615 will be off-peak. 1600 is the switch point between off-peak and peak, so if you’re lucky you’ll get off-peak again. The actual switch is 2-3 minutes after 1600 to avoid problems with clocks being wrong.

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