A Basic London Travel Guide
Getting around London is very easy due to the London Travel system that is in place and you have a wide range of public transport to choose from. If you are visiting London, you have a number of choices in terms of transport and each one has its own advantages and disadvantages. Which form of transport you use during your time in London is obviously up to you and it simply down to your own personal choice, circumstances and budget. It will also be determined on where you are travelling to and from in London and also how many journeys you will be making during your visit.
This page is designed to provide you with a simple overview of the different forms of transport that are on offer to you through the London Travel network and hopefully, it will help you plan your trip accordingly.
Transport For London
TFL (Transport For London) are responsible for the operation of the London Travel network. Each and every day throughout the capital there are in the region of 24 million journeys made across the London Travel network.
TFL manage most of the transport networks that operate in London and these include:
The London buses, the London Tube network (The Underground), The DLR (Docklands Light Railway), The London Overground rail network and Tramlink. TFL also run the Barclays Cycle Hire scheme, Victoria Coach Station, The Emirates Air Line and the London River Services.
Types Of Transport On The London Travel Network
London is famous for its big red buses and the London Travel network provides a large number of bus services to all the major attractions throughout London. If you are planning to catch the bus to your chosen destinations, just remember that you can no longer pay with cash on the London buses and you will have to either buy an Oyster card, pay using a contactless bank card or purchase a London Travel card.
The Tube (London Underground)
The London Underground is a very quick and easy way to move around London and there are Tubes every few minutes to most of the major landmarks and attractions. The easiest and cheapest way to use the London Tube network is to purchase an Oyster Card or Visitor Oyster Card. Please click on the following link to read more about the Oyster Card. Oyster Card
Overground Rail Network
The ‘Overground’ rail network in London connects passengers to many of the neighbouring towns and cities close to London. It also connect services with the London Underground network and there are rail services to many of the London airports such as Heathrow, Gatwick, Luton and Stansted.
Docklands Light Railway (DLR)
The DLR is a driverless light rail network that runs through East and South London and also through the redeveloped Docklands.
An Iconic figure of London is the ‘Black Cab’ and these can be found throughout London. The Black Cabs in London can be hailed in the street and if the yellow light on the cab is illuminated then is means that the cab is available. There is a minimum fare for the taxis in London which is £2.40 (at the time of writing).
The Tramlink provides a fast and efficient service for passengers through the South of London and runs from Wimbledon and via Croydon it then continues its journey terminating at Beckenham.
There is now a Cycle Hire system in operation throughout London which provides an alternative form of transport throughout London. The Barclays Cycle Hire scheme (The Boris Bike as it is also known), is very easy to use and it simple works by you taking a bike from one of the hundreds of Docking Stations that are located around London and the then returning it to a Docking Station at your chosen destination once you arrive. The first 30 minutes of any journey are FREE but if you exceed 30 minutes, you will be charged accordingly to the time you have had the bike for.
Walking is a great way to get around London and it means that you actually get to see much more of the city than you would were you to take the Tube. Many people choose to take the Tube because they believe it is the quickest way but to be honest, it can be much quicker to walk and the added bonus is, it is much healthier!
There are a large number of coach services that provide connections to and from London and the coach services provide a very cheap and cost effective way to visit London.
London has a huge number of visitors each year and many of these visitors are from overseas. Several airports connect passengers to London and getting to and from the airports is relatively quick and simple.
Several operators provide river bus services along the River Thames. These services not only provide visitors with an efficient mode of transport but also provide them with a unique way of seeing the city from a different point of view.
The Emirates Air Line
The Emirates Air Line provides a unique way of crossing the River Thames and offers a great vantage point of the city.
If you intend driving your vehicle in London, you should make yourself familiar with the Congestion Charge that is in place in certain parts of the city centre. If you enter the Congestion Zone, you will need to pay a fee and if you do not, you will be fine!
The London Travel Planner
If you are not familiar with London or the different forms of transport that are on offer, a simple way to plan your journey is to use the ‘London Travel Planner’. The TFL offer a London Travel Planner facility on their website and this allows you to type in your starting point and the destination you wish to reach. Once you submit your details, it will find the best route and provide you with the details of your journey and the quickest way to reach your destination using the London Travel network.
The London Travel system provides a quick and easy way for you to travel around the city and using the special travel cards that are available, also makes it very cost effective.