London buses to stop accepting cash


London buses to stop accepting cash

Karl Flinders

London buses will stop accepting cash from this summer as the proportion of journeys paid in other ways such as through Oyster cards reaches 99%.

Transport for London’s Oyster card system, launched in July 2003, uses radio frequency identification tags (RFID) to enable a contactless ticketing system. It has contributed to a rapid reduction in the use of cash for bus journeys. About 1% of bus journeys are now paid for in cash compared to 20% 10 years ago.


TfL said the decision to move to Oyster and contactless debit or credit card payments will save the network £24m a year. In December, contactless payment functionality was installed on 8,500 buses.

Leon Daniels, managing director for TfL surface transport, said: "The decision to stop accepting cash fares on London buses reflects the changing way that people pay for goods and services in our city, including journeys on the bus network."

A survey in December, from Visa Europe, revealed that over three-quarters of Transport for London customers want alternative ways to pay for their journeys, with contactless payments the preferred alternative to Oyster and cash for 45% of respondents, according to research.

The study revealed that 88% of London transport customers use Oyster cards, but 77% said they wanted more options other than the Oyster and cash.

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