Using Contactless on Transport for London

Written by Karen Bryan

contactless on tflDuring my recent trip to London I tried out using contactless payment, whereby you swipe your debit or credit card on the card reader at ticket barriers or when you enter a bus. You don’t need to physically insert the card into the machine and enter a PIN.

I’d previously used a Transport for London (Tfl) Oyster Card when travelling around London, which also allows you to swipe your card at the reader. The downside of the Oyster Card was that I had to log into my online account and top it up before each trip. I was never sure exactly how much credit to add. Using contactless avoids the need for top up, you pay as you go, so you don’t have unused credit sitting on my Oyster Card for months.

The charging structure for contactless is the same as for an Oyster Card.

You can earn cashback on Tfl journeys with some debit or credit cards. The Santander 123 Credit Card pays 3% cashback, up to a maximum spend of £300 on travel and/or fuel per month. The TSB Classic Current Account pays 5% cashback on the first £100 of contactless payments per month, until 31 December 2016.

I found using contcactless very convenient for my Tube and bus journeys around London. In fact, I had fewer problems at card readers than I generally had when swiping my Oyster Card.