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Oyster cards

Hihi, if I stay in London for a few days and travel by bus or metro, should I buy an Oyster Card? It seems it is good no matter how many journeys I take.


Posted by
81 posts

Absolutely. It gives about a 50 percent savings. If you are flying into Heathrow and want to take the Tube to central London, get the Oyster card first at the Transport for London Travel Information Centre where Terminals 1-2-3 meet. It's not hard to find from Terminal 4 but is a bit of a hike.

The cost is a 3 pound deposit (presumably refundable, if you're never coming back to London) plus however much you want to load onto it. I started with 20 pounds for four days and didn't use it all. Treat the card like cash.

"Tap in" by placing the card on the yellow circular reader when you go through the stile onto the underground, and "tap out" when you leave--your card balance will show on the little screen. If riding a bus no need to tap out, but VERY important on the tube, or you get the maximum deducted.

Not good, unfortunately, for airport expresses or most National Rail commuter trains.

Posted by
28 posts

Yes, it sure is nice to just pull out the oyster card and swipe as you jump on the bus or tube. It is fun once you get the hang of navigating the tube. Mind the Gap:)

Posted by
1 posts

We've just come back from a trip that included a week in London. The Oyster card worked out very well indeed; I highly recommended it. When we were done with London, we gave ours back at Victoria Underground Station (since we were taking the train out from there) and got a full refund of the three pound deposit and whatever was left on it. There was nothing to lose. You can purchase and top them up in shops all over the place.

Posted by
2 posts

Another note on Oyster cards... you can get discounts on some of the sights. For instance, when my aunt and uncle came for a visit, we went on a Thames Cruise. My Oyster Card saved several pounds off the price.

In the past, the London Eye has been 2 for 1 with an Oyster. It's definitely worth it whether you live here, or are just staying a few days.