London Underground contactless payments due to go live

Londoners will be able to pay for journeys with contactless payments from 16 September

Contactless payments for London Underground services and trains and trams will go live on Tuesday 16 September, enabling travellers in the capital to pay for journeys directly from a contactless-enabled bankcard or smartphone.

Transport for London (TfL) announced the plans for network-wide contactless payments back in July, having already overseen the rollout of this service on London buses. TfL confirmed to V3 that the service would begin from first thing on Tuesday morning.

The move to allow contactless payments from bank cards or smartphones is part of an effort by TfL to speed up daily life in the capital by reducing the time it takes for people to use transport around the city.

The entire London Underground network, the Docklands Light Railway, the London Overground and tram services will all accept contactless payments.

Contactless payments are set at the same prices as the Oyster Card, the contactless prepay cards most Londoners use to pay for journeys. TfL said its systems would also calculate a user’s costs to put capping in place so they don’t pay more than Oyster Card users.

Each use of a contactless payment will be registered on a user’s bank statement, while journey details will be stored on their TfL account, if they register. A pilot of the system has already been running since April, with 3,000 Londoners taking part and TfL said so far 65,000 journeys have taken place using this payment method.

Shashi Verma, TfL’s director of customer experience, said the move to bring contactless payments to the rest of the London transport network was a big step forward for the capital.

“Offering the option of contactless payments will make it easier and more convenient for customers to pay for their travel, freeing them of the need to top up Oyster credit and helping them get on board without delay,” she said.

TfL has also been running a campaign to warn travellers of ‘card clash’, when a contactless payment card and Oyster Card are held near the reader at the same time, if they are kept in the same wallet for example. This can lead to both cards being charged, or the system failing to acknowledge either card.

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15 September 2014 | 3:00 pm – Source: v3.co.uk

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