London is a major city, and it can be daunting at first to navigate your way between your flat, Faraday House, and special events. However, London’s public transit infrastructure is world-leading: safe pedestrian areas, cycle highways, iconic red buses, and the impressive underground Tube trains are all accessible options for your transportation needs.
Transport for London is a central system operating all of the capital’s public transit options. The TfL Oyster card is a prepaid ticket card valid for all official buses and trains. Contactless debit or credit cards and ApplePay can also be used, for the same fare rates.
The UK has an amazing public transit system, and London is a major hub for trains going all around the country. To make the most of your weekends, get a Young Person’s Railcard. The initial card will cost you £30, but then give you 1/3 off the price of all train journeys – including your Oyster card for the London Tube!
On the Tube and train, you must touch into the automated barriers at the start of your journey and out at the end. On buses, you only need to tap in when boarding.
You can add funds to your Oyster card at any Tube station, or email email@example.com and ask for a top up. You will not be able to travel with a negative balance.
You might also find phone apps like
Taxi and Minicabs
It is easy to be tempted by a ‘black cab’ taxi as they are so readily available, but be mindful of the cost involved: They are one of the most expensive ways to travel around the city, particularly if you can’t share the cost with others. Other licensed minicab companies often provide more competitive rates. You can text “CAB” to 60835 or see this page for contact details of nearby providers.
- Book your minicab by phone, e-mail or a licensed office, and pre-negotiate the cost of your journey.
- Always check that it’s your car: Can the driver confirm your name?
- Sit in the back and hold your mobile phone in your hand in case you need to make an emergency call.
- Always let someone else know where you are and who you are with.
featured image by Brian Lehman, 2007