03/04/2021 at 19:13 #865AndyboyParticipant
I have a Z23 travelcard on Oyster. My usual journey is Tooting Rail Station (Z3) to East Putney Underground (Z2/3) via Wimbledon (Z3)- I’ve never had to touch any pink reader at Wimbledon, and never had any problems with overcharging.
The other day though, I travelled from Streatham Rail Station (also Z3, one stop before Tooting) to East Putney, again via Wimbledon. This time, my Oyster was charged £2.40 for travelling via Zone 1, even though the time between touching in and out was only 34 minutes!
After waiting ages on the phone, and then more time speaking to the agent, who said it was because I didn’t touch the pink reader at Wimbledon, I did get a refund.
The TFL Route Planner shows that the optimum journey from Streatham to East Putney is indeed via Wimbledon- this is clearly correct as it’s only six stops and 31 minutes.
So why does the TFL Fare Finder assume you go via Z1 when the Route Planner can’t even come up with a route via Z1? Does anyone have any idea how a journey from Streatham Rail Station to East Putney Undergound via Z1 is even possible without passing through any gates to transfer from rail to tube?
And why do I need to touch the pink reader when travelling from Streatham, but not Tooting?
Thanks everyone…03/04/2021 at 22:42 #866Chris D.Participant
TfL takes train frequency into account when deciding zonal coverage. Streatham has frequent northbound trains on Thameslink and Southern, whereas from Tooting you are stuck with the Wimbledon loop of the Thameslink line which is half hourly. This explains the different treatment. Note that Streatham to Southfields is Zone 3 only, so East Putney is the cut point.
TfL only need half an excuse to default to a Zone 1 route and in this case the Zone 1 competitor would be via Herne Hill and Victoria. You may well ask why TfL assume that a transfer at Victoria happened when no touches at the Victoria gateline took place, but there are lots of examples of TfL not distinguishing routes based on Out of Station Interchanges where they could do, especially where a pink reader exists to prove the cheaper route instead.
04/04/2021 at 22:05 #871AndyboyParticipant
- This reply was modified 2 weeks, 3 days ago by Chris D..
Thanks for the explanation.
Just to add to my confusion: the Fare Finder from Streatham to Putney Rail (5 minutes walk from East Putney Tube) *doesn’t* default to Zone 1- I presume it’s based on Streatham – Wimbledon – Clapham Junction – Putney which is fine, but then why doesn’t it default to via Wimbledon to get to East Putney too?
The TFL/Oyster default fare calculations seem very opaque.05/04/2021 at 21:24 #874MikeModerator
Yes I agree, sometimes the decisions about default route do seem a bit random.
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