Travelling on London’s trains

London: A Visitor’s Guide

Have you seen our eBook? It has a beginner’s guide to using London’s buses, boats, taxis and trains, including all the fares

Buy our huge London eBook

1,000+ pages filled with money-
saving tips, maps and reviews

Train stations

Get information about a particular station:

London train stations

Plan a train journey

Plan a journey between two different stations:

London train journey plannerStart:     
Finish:   

Or find the best route to a tourist attraction:

Train journeys in LondonStation:  
Place:     

How often do the trains run?

The London Underground typically operates from 5 AM to 00.30 AM (Mon-Sat), and 7 AM to 11.30 PM (Sun). The Docklands Light Railway runs from 5.30 AM to 00.30 AM (Mon-Sat), and 7 AM to 11.30 PM (Sun).

The long-awaited 24-hour service will start in late 2016, but only on Fridays and Saturdays, and only on the Jubilee, Piccadilly, Victoria, and most of the Central and Northern lines.

But this is where it begins to get a bit complicated: because the Central line will only operate between Ealing Broadway and Loughton. It will not operate from North Acton to West Ruislip, from Loughton to Epping, or from Woodford to Hainault (although it will go between Leytonstone and Hainult). The Northern line will only operate from Morden to Edgware, and Morden to High Barnet (both via the Charing Cross loop). It will not operate on the Bank loop. The Piccadilly line will run all the way from Cockfosters to Heathrow Terminals 1-3, and Terminal 5, but not Terminal 4. It will not operate between Acton Town and Uxbridge.

How to read the tube map

Each underground line has its own special colour, which is shown below.

Colours of the London underground lines

The coloured lines can be seen on the tube map, which you will find pasted up at every station. Here is a part of it.

Section of the London Underground map

Stations which only serve one line are shown by a little stub protruding from the coloured line. For example, Covent Garden, which only serves the Piccadilly (dark blue) line.

Stations which serve two or more lines are said to be interchanges, and are shown by a large white circle. For example, Blackfriars, which serves the Circle (yellow) and District (dark green) lines.

Stations which also serve mainline (above-ground) trains are accompanied by a little red rail symbol. For example, Charing Cross and Cannon Street.

What are the fares?

Adult train fares in London, 2016

Child train fares in London, 2016

Underground tickets Buy an Oyster Card   (more info)
Buy a Visitor Oyster Card   (info)
Buy a Travelcard   (more info)
Buy a Travelcard + London Pass
Contactless payment cards
National Rail tickets Buy from Trainline
Buy from Raileasy

London train timetables

You can print off paper timetables at tfl.gov.uk/travel-information.

You can also get paper timetables at a Travel Information Centre. There are six of them in London: Euston station, King’s Cross station, Liverpool Street station, Piccadilly Circus station, Victoria station and Heathrow airport.

Tips for train travel

Always stand on the right-hand side of escalators. The left-hand side is reserved for people who want to walk up the escalator.

Barrier at a London train station

When entering or exiting the platform, you won’t be able to use every single ticket barrier… only the ones with green or yellow arrows on. If a lane has a red or yellow cross on it, then it won’t accept your ticket.

If you’re carrying bulky items and can’t fit through the barrier, look for an extra wide gate to the side. If there are none, just show your ticket to the member of staff, who will let you through a side gate.

Got any questions?

> Talk about the London underground 

  • Admin – “I believe U12 stands for unlimited travel between zones 1 and 2, so it does cover euston to victoria (which are both in zone 1)”
  •  Guest – “Hi, we are a family of 6, 2 adults & 4 kids (14,12,10&8). We visit London occasionally. If we use contactless on the train how does it work? Can we use one card for adults & 2 older kids if we get them photo ID? Thanks”
  • Admin – “Have a read of this page, where we've explained how it works -- It's not possible to use one card to pay for multiple fares. You can use one card to buy multiple tickets at the self-service machine (or a ticket window), but then you'll have to pay the normal fare. If you want everyone to have a contactless fare, then everyone will need their own contactless card (which is not possible with kids, of course)”

> Read the rest, or ask your own question

 
 

Buy a London Pass  – and save money at London attractions

Save money – Get free or discounted entry into over 50 top attractions

Jump the queues – Get ‘Fast Track’ entry at lots of popular attractions

1-3 day Travelcard – Easy way to pay for London’s buses and trains

Copyright © 2016 London Drum. All rights reserved · Contact London Drum · Privacy policy / Terms of use / Cookies
London City GuideSearch this site