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Travelcard vrs Oyster

Hi My daughter and I are staying in East Finchley which I believe is zone 3 We are staying for 5 days April 8 arrival. I just want to make sure I understand the difference btw the two options. From what I gather If I want to take advantage of the 2for1 attractions I will need to bring a passport sized pic of myself and my daughter and buy the Travelcard from the National rail station on the day of arrival From all I have read (for the 2 for 1 to be valid I can't purchase online?) Most of our site-seeing will be in the centre of London so is a zone 1-3, 7 day Travelcard my best option even though I am only utilizing it for 5 days? Also could anyone suggest transportation from Heathrow to East Finchley and is there a National rail station on the route that I may deal with transportation right away on arrival
Thanks Caroline

Posted by
324 posts

The tickets that are valid for the 2 for 1 must be purchased at a National Rail station because it is their promotion.

Yes, a 7 day Travelcard will be the most cost-efficient. One day Travelcards will cost £11.40 each day for peak (before 0930) or £8.90 off peak (after 0930). A 7 day card for zones 1-3 is £36.80 and allows for peak travel.

For getting to your final destination, you can buy single tube fares from Heathrow and change to the Northern Line at King's Cross. You could actually buy your Travelcards there and continue on to North Finchley. You could also get a pre-booked car service and be driven straight to your door. In that case, you'd still have to make your way to a NR station to get your Travelcards.

Posted by
98 posts

Thanks Miranda. So a 1-3 Travelcard would also cover zone 2 or would I have to buy a separate ticket if I stopped in zone 2? I hope thats not a dumb question but I just want to be sure I buy the right thing and don't have any surprises when I get there. Thanks Carol

Posted by
324 posts

No problem! A zone 1-3 card covers zones 1 through 3. Just beware that if you were to travel into zone 4 (or 5-9) and attempt to exit the station, you would be flagged at the gate and it wouldn't open for you.

Your Travelcard will be valid on buses in all zones.

Posted by
24859 posts

The rules changed on buses a couple of years ago. To use a travelcard on a bus now it has to be valid in the zone(s) where you are on that bus.

Posted by
324 posts

They must have changed it back, because I took several bus rides in zone 3 (beginning in zone) this past September, but I only had a zone 1-2 card on my oyster. There was some PAYG money, but I used it before I loaded the Travelcard. The TFL site also says all zones for buses.

Posted by
24859 posts

Yes, it appears that they have changed back again. Trying to get information on paper Travelcards on the TfL website is now nearly impossible. TfL really really want everybody on Oyster.

They have announced that quite soon they will not even take cash on the buses.

Posted by
98 posts

Thanks again Miranda and Nigel too I appreciate the tips Just wondering if either of you know if any of the 2 for 1 attractions have to be booked in advance online or if I can just wait until I get to London, get my travelcard and then just go to the attractions I would like to see?

Posted by
24859 posts

no they can't be booked. Turn up with your valid train ticket and the form and pay your money and go in

Posted by
324 posts

My Oyster is registered so I get emails from TLF, and they are really pushing cashless travel.

Posted by
13 posts

Can I clarify -is the Oyster card what I use to get the 2for1. Also we will be in London in March with granddaughters 8 and 12, is the family pass offered by some sites or the 2 for 1 a better option?jeanne

Posted by
13 posts

Keith, thank you . Can I ask your recommendation, if we are staying in the west end and then Covent Garden area to see sites such as Tower, Abbey St. Paul 's , Eye etc are we better with an Oyster card or Travel card? Thank you, Jeanne

Posted by
324 posts

Jeanne,

You can buy one-day Travelcards, but if you are visiting for more than 4 days, it is more cost-effective to buy a 7day card.

An Oyster card will not be eligible for the 2 for 1 deals. It's good for Pay As You Go travel (pay per trip taken) and electronic Travelcards.

This is the Days Out page for London offers - http://daysoutguide.co.uk/2for1-london

Some sites do offer family tickets so you have to check the website of each venue to see of they do, and what is better cost wise.