Travelling Around London A Guide For Tourists

By: Gordon Warre

The easiest way to get around London is by public transport. This article provides brief information about the various transport options available to you, including useful maps to guide you around the city.

What is an Oyster card?
Oyster is the easiest way to pay for single journeys on buses, Tube, trams, DLR, London Overground and some National Rail services in London. You can store your Travelcard/Bus Pass and/or cash to pay as you go on your card.

How to use your Oyster card
Just touch your Oyster card flat on a yellow card reader each time you make a journey.Always touch in at the start and touch out at the end of your journey, even if the gates are open.

Buses
Always touch in as you board. You do not need to touch out.

Trams
Always touch in on the card reader on the tram stop platform before boarding a tram. You do not need to touch out.

How to pay for your journeys with Oyster
You can store cash on your card to pay for single journeys as you go. You can make as many journeys as you like in a 24 hour period and you will always be charged less than the price of an equivalent Day Travelcard or One Day Bus Pass.

For complete flexibility, you can store tickets and cash on a single Oyster card. Remember: the cash you put on Oyster never expires so hold onto the Oyster card for your next visit to London.

How to get an Oyster card and top up. You can renew the ticket stored on your card or top up your cash balance:
Online at the UK Government site. At most Tube stations through the touchscreen ticket machines and the station ticket offices. At over 2,200 Oyster Ticket Stops. Find your nearest one at the UK Government site
At some National Rail ticket offices. At 7 London Travel Information Centres, which also offer travel advice, free maps and entry tickets to many attractions.

Using Oyster on National Rail

7 Day and longer period Travelcards stored on Oyster can be used across National Rail services in London. If using cash to pay as you go for single journeys please check with the train operator before travelling as not all routes are covered on National Rail.

I hope this small guide helps you if you are ever visiting out capital city, they sure helped me when I visited. The confusion really comes when you try to use the tube system in London, I shall leave that article for another day as it gets even more difficult than travelling by the bus system. If all else fails then I guess you can always rely on a trusted black cab driver.

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