Best value Travelcard if I want to travel for different zones every day per week

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  • #5840
    Michael Tsang
    Participant

    If I want to travel for 7 days per week, among these 7 days, I need to cap for zones 1-2 for 2 or 3 days on PAYG, cap for zones 1-3 for 2 or 3 days on PAYG, and outboundary travel on the weekends, will I be better off in buying a monthly Zones 1-2 Travelcard, Zones 1-3 Travelcard, or rely on PAYG? (I am not considering an annual at this stage because I have a plan to move later this year, and I am looking to move to a place served by National Rail to buy a cheaper annual rail-only ticket and stop using the Underground as much as possible).

    A major benefit of using a Travelcard is that I won’t need to pay for the capped PAYG and the National Rail fare to/from London Terminal separately if my outboundary journey is on a through train from London. This benefit doesn’t apply if I change at Clapham Junction instead, but unfortuately now I live at a place where it is much faster to travel via Waterloo or Victoria.

    • This topic was modified 2 weeks, 5 days ago by Michael Tsang. Reason: clarify that I don't want to buy annual
    #5843
    Mike (admin)
    Keymaster

    Hi Michael,

    The difference between a weekly zone 1-2 and zone 1-3 travelcard is £7.50. Four zone 3 singles at peak times will be at least £7.60, and even if all were Underground off-peak it would be £7.20. Unless you’re sure that you won’t make 4 single zone 3 journeys I think a zone 1-3 travelcard would be better. Given your need for extension tickets at the weekend, I’d rule out using PAYG for capping too. The other benefit to travelcards is that they can start on any day.

    #5844
    Michael Tsang
    Participant

    Thanks for your explanation. It seems that 4 journeys in zone 3 + weekend extensions are enough to tip the balance to a bigger Travelcard if there is no discount.

    However, will the balance be tipped to the other side if, instead, I have a suitable railcard for discounted off-peak travel, while still travel enough to max out on the PAYG all-day basis? My zone 3 journeys will most likely be off-peak, 2 on National Rail and 2 on TfL scale per week, but it can be more or less. I think that I tried to work out this situation in the past and got a conclusion that no Travelcard was a good value, because paying for 3 capped 1-2 plus 2 capped 1-3 worked out less than the 1-2 Travelcard plus the zone 3 extensions, but is it really possible?

    #5983
    Mike (admin)
    Keymaster

    Just noticed I never came back to this. If you have a railcard then obviously you’ll get more off-peak journeys in zone 3 before it’s worthwhile getting the bigger travelcard. The thing to note, railcard or not, is that when making extension journeys using PAYG you will still be limited by the same zone 1 centered daily/weekly cap.

    It really depends how much time you wish to spend on saving a small amount of money.

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