Oyster Card

Oyster Card


An Oyster card is the easiest and cheapest way to travel around London. It is a plastic smartcard you can use instead of paper tickets. When passing through barriers at train and underground stations, or when getting on to a bus, you press the card against the yellow electronic Oyster card pad and it charges you for the journey.

You can use the Oyster card as a pay-as-you-go system or as an easier way to use a season ticket. For single journeys on London bus, tube, Overground and train services, Oyster is the cheapest way to travel.

Pay As You Go

You can add credit to your Oyster card using the ticket machines at most London train stations. Each time you travel, press on the yellow electronic Oyster pad when you pass through the barriers both in and out, and money will be taken for the journey.

This means you can travel as little or as much as you like. It's the best way to travel if you are only travelling to central London occasionally.

When you purchase an Oyster card, you must pay a deposit of £5, but otherwise you can put as much money on the card as you choose.

You can add money to the card using the ticket machines at any tube or train station, at the newsagents, and by using your mobile phone or the internet.

Travelcards

You can add Travelcards to your Oyster card rather than buying them as individual paper tickets. There are various Travelcards you can purchase.

The London transport network is divided by zones. Zone 1 covers Central London, and the zones progress outward as rings around it. You can view a map of the Zones here. Wimbledon is within Zone 3. A Zones 1 to 3 Travelcard will cover you to travel between Wimbledon and Central London, and costs at £35.60 per week or £136.80 for a month.

If you travel beyond the zones covered by your Travelcard, you will be charged an extension fare which will be deducted from your Oyster pay as you go balance. Your Oyster card will know when to switch between your Travelcard and pay as you go balance.

Student Oyster Photocard

If you are studying here for 14 weeks or more, you can apply for a student Oyster card. With it, you can buy all weekly and monthly travelcards and bus passes at a 30% discount.

The photocard costs £10. You can apply online before you travel to the UK or when you arrive at school. You will receive the photocard through the post (to a UK address) in about ten days.

With a student Oyster photocard, you can buy a season ticket that covers the entire London transport network. For one week, this costs £38.90. For one month, this costs £149.40.

You must be 18 or older to apply for this card. Students under 18 can apply for the 16+ Oyster photocard.

Bus Passes

You can buy a buss pass on your Oyster card and travel on London buses at any time, as often as you want, for the period that you buy it for. You can buy a bus pass from a newsagent or the tube/train station.

Visit the Transport for London website for more information about Oyster cards.

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