Oystercard Improvements

Some London-centric news for those of us that like to live in this city and get about by tube... Tube fares are going up [updated to an archive link] this month, but you can avoid paying the increased fares by using the new Pre Pay Oystercard (see what they did there? A clever little bribe).

I've been using the Oystercard for a couple of months (with a monthly travelcard), and it seems to work quite well, though I'm not yet sure whether it's marginally quicker or slower than the old-style tickets when going through the barriers... One nice feature is that you can see a log of your journeys at tube station ticket machines (though it's scary to think that all this data is stored). I have had problems registering my card online though, as it's not recognising my passdata (which I wrote on the application form).

For me, the price of my monthly ticket will actually go down this month, as Ken Livingstone has negotiated that students can now get a 30% discount off travelcards as well as LT cards. Previously students had to pay adult-rates for travelcards as the privatised national rail services don't fall under Transport for London. So, great news for me!

Finally, it's now possible to combine period travelcard-Oystercards with Pre Pay. This will be useful if you get a monthly zone 1 & 2 travelcard but need an extension to zone 4. In fact, you have no choice but to do this, as otherwise your card ends up in negative credit and won't let you use it...