Mayor unveils plan to cut Friday tube and rail fares

Image above: Library image of London Underground Tube train

Tube and rail fares on pay as you go with contactless and Oyster will be off-peak all day on Fridays

The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan is introducing off-peak fares all day on Fridays. Tube and rail fares on pay as you go with contactless and Oyster will be charged at the off-peak rate all day on Fridays for a trial period beginning on Friday 8 March.

The Mayor has introduced this trial to “help TfL and rail operators to better understand if off-peak fares on a Friday could help drive ridership and boost London’s wider economic recovery.”

Mayor Khan said:

“I’m doing all I can to support Londoners through the cost-of-living crisis and to support London’s economic recovery. This includes freezing TfL fares for another year to make transport more affordable for millions of Londoners and to encourage more people to use our transport network. But I want to do more.

“Encouraging more people back into the city on Fridays could give a much-needed boost to the hospitality, business and leisure sectors, supporting London’s wider economic growth as we continue to build a fairer, greener and more prosperous London for everyone. So, I’m making a call to all Londoners: to help London keep roaring back – Let’s Do Fridays!”

At the moment, peak pay as you go fares apply between 06.30 and 09.30 and between 16.00 and 19.00 on both TfL and National Rail services.

The three-month trial will run until 31 May. The trial follows the previous announcement that the Mayor has frozen TfL fares until March 2025.

Bus and Tram fares across London will not change during the trial as they are set at a flat rate of £1.75 regardless of the time of travel.

Trial will allow people 60+ and Freedom Pass holders to use their passes all day on Fridays

The trial will also see 60+ London Oyster photocard and Older Persons’ Freedom Passes allowed to be used on TfL and National Rail services before 9am, so Londoners with these passes will be able to travel free all day on Fridays.

To fund the trial, £24m has been allocated from the Mayor of London’s recently approved budget, which will be used to compensate TfL and rail operators for lower fares revenue during the trial and cover the costs for running it.

Shashi Verma, Chief Technology Officer at TfL said:

“While millions of people travel using bus, Tube and rail services across London every day, we are still seeing ridership on Fridays, particularly during peak hours, being lower than other days of the week.

“This trial of making Fridays off-peak will help us better understand how targeted initiatives like this could help potentially support economic growth by encouraging more people back onto public transport and into the office on a day that is currently quieter than other weekdays.”

Jacqueline Starr, Chief Executive Officer at Rail Delivery Group, said:

“We want more people to use rail. We’re pleased that train companies are able to work with Transport for London to offer this trial to customers and we hope it will encourage more people onto trains in the capital.”

“We know that people value rail and as seen from our latest research they plan to use it more in the upcoming months.

“It is a greener, more convenient way to travel into and around London. This trial means customers in London can travel at off-peak prices on Fridays by using pay as you go on Oyster or Contactless.”