Like any big city, there are multiple ways to travel around the great city of London.
With plenty of options around a variety of budgets, there will be something for everyone when getting about town.
We have detailed the most popular transportations of choice available in London below and if you’re planning on doing a lot of sight-seeing or are thinking of staying longer than a weekend, an Oyster card can often give you discounted prices on most of London’s public transport.
· The London Underground/London Bus Service.
Some consider the Underground to be a great tourist experience as it’s often the transportation of choice for Londoners and regular visitors to the big city. Day or Week passes are available from ticket machines at stations, or if you opt for an Oyster card, you can just top it up as you go! There are 6 zones in the London Underground, with zones 1 and 2 being the cheapest – they are also where most of the infamous London attractions are based. If you’re planning on travelling late into the night, your Underground ticket may also be used on the London bus system which runs 24 hours a day on major routes, whereas the Underground closes at around midnight. Keep your eyes peeled though, by 2015 some lines are expected to run all night.
· Boris Bikes.
Thanks to the Lord Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, Londoners and visitors to London now have access to push bikes for hire in the city. You can choose from over 8,000 bikes at around 550 docking stations. Prices start from £2.00 to sign up and are free for the first 30 minutes of use. After this first half an hour you will be charged depending on the length of use. Great for short journeys and you can view your nearest docking station on their app.
· London Taxis.
From the iconic London Black Cabs, to basic city cabs, you will see taxi’s everywhere. If you are travelling on a budget, we suggest that you do not use a London cab, as they aren’t the cheapest mode of getting around. Fares are metered, and there is a minimum charge of £2.40. Additional charges apply may apply on certain national holidays or when travelling from airports. Many black cabs accept payment by credit or debit card but check with the driver before the trip starts. Card payments may attract additional charges.
· London’s River Bus Service on The Thames.
What better way to get yourself around London than head down the river Thames on one of the river buses. Loved by Londoners and tourists alike, it is a great way to see some beautiful sights. Popular stops include: Milbank pier for Tate Britain, Bankside Pier for Tate Modern, London Bridge Pier for London Bridge and the Shard, Tower Pier for Tower of London and Tower Bridge, Hilton London Docklands Riverside Pier, North Greenwich Pier for The O2 and Greenwich Pier for Greenwich. To get a ticket, you usually have to buy them at the docks, but there are also ferries where purchase is required on board. Oyster Card holder also have access to this service.
· London Trams. Trams run in parts of South London between Wimbledon, Croydon, Beckenham and New Addington. The services are frequent and accessible. London’s tram network, Tram link, was introduced to South London in 2000. The London tram network runs from Wimbledon through Croydon to Beckenham, where it has proven a popular mode of transport. Oyster cards can also be used on the trams and as a result of their no-step policy, they have become increasingly popular to wheel chair users, who are eligible to ride this mode of transport for free, without the need for a pass.
· Emirates Air Line. Not exactly a main source of public transport, as it only has two destinations, but The Emirates Air Line is a great way to get over the Thames in a cable car, offering fantastic bird’s eye views along the river. A more expensive option for crossing the river, but if you hold an Oyster Card, you are eligible for a discounted ticket. The air line is open 7 days a week and is available to wheelchair users and cyclists.
For more information and prices, why not pop into our TravelShop at Clink78 or reception at Clink261, where they will be able to sort you out with passes and free maps that will help you navigate your way around London.