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Oyster Card

I have been hearing a lot about the Oyster Card for Tube travel in London. We are going to be in London for 5 days, we plan on using the underground for are main way of traveling around the city. We are a family of 5 - 2 adults, one 11 year old and one 7 and 5 year old. Should I get the Oyster Card? Is the process of getting one fairly easy?

Posted by
3428 posts

You can get Oyster cards at any Tube station. You can load a travel card (1 day or 7 days) on the card and/ or you can load Pay-as-you-go (PAYGO) cash on the card. The Oyster automatically calculates the least expensive fare for all of your travel on a given day- so you never pay more than the price of a 1 day travel card. There is a small deposit (I think 5 GBP) that is returned, along with any unused PAYGO cash when you turn in the card at the end of your trip. You could also get PAPER travel cards for you and your husband. You get them at a NATIONAL RAIL station (they are good on the Tube- for the zones you buy it for- and on all the buses) You would need to bring passport sized photos so they can make the free id card you also need with them. This way your Tube travel 'counts' as rail travel making you eligible for the 2-for-1 deals on things like the Tower of London, London Transport Museum, and other sites, and some restaurants. You can check the details at this website(http://www.daysoutguide.co.uk/). You will also want to check on the best things for the kids. I think the 11 year old will need either an Oyster or a Travel Card and I THINK the 5 year old will travel free with you, not sure about the 7 year old. If you got travel cards for 2 of the kids, then they could also use the 2-4-1 deals- and the 5 year old may get in free at some sites.

Posted by
521 posts

Detailed information about Oyster for 5 to 10 year olds is here: http://www.tfl.gov.uk/tickets/14554.aspx For the 11 year old: http://www.tfl.gov.uk/tickets/14310.aspx And here is the table of prices for the adults: http://www.tfl.gov.uk/tickets/14416.aspx See the pages above for how to get the cards. For the children's cards there are specific instructions for people who live overseas, ordering online and collecting the cards when you get here. For the adults, you can get them at any Tube station, even at some ticket machines, or at Transport for London travel centres, or you can buy them pre-loaded with cash before you leave the US, from here: http://www.visitbritainshop.com/usa/travel-transport/london-transport/product/london-visitor-oyster-card.html Apologies about the URLs, you will have to copy and paste them. The forum software here doesn't work with many addresses and I'm in a bit of a rush this morning so I can't covert them all to TinyURLs for you.

Posted by
257 posts

Hopping on here to ask a quick question. Hope you don't mind Greta
We have our old Passports. Could we just cut the passport picture out and use it for the Travelcard too? Do you think they'd accept them?

Posted by
3428 posts

I don't know about using old pictures. They only have to be passport sized (head shots- not full body)- not passport quality. So you can print off a pic on your own computer on 'regular' paper- don't even have to use photo paper. Or they have photo booths that will take and print your pic for a small fee (I think it's about 5GBP)

Posted by
187 posts

@Shelley I was just in London end of May & used an old passport photo for my travel card. No problem at all. Stephanie

Posted by
257 posts

Thanks Stephanie... We were about to shred them...and then I had the idea. Thanks. :) Save a couple of $$ :)