If you have a Pay As You Go Oyster card, you can use it to travel on bus, Tube, tram, DLR, the IFS Cable Car, London Overground and National Rail services in London. You can also use it to travel on Thames Clippers River Bus services but these journeys do not count towards daily caps.
You can use Oyster Pay As You Go in London on all suburban trains stopping in Zones 1 – 9 and journeys to:
- Broxbourne, Rye House, St. Margarets, Ware and Hertford East
- Gatwick Airport
- Merstham, Redhill, Earlswood, Salfords and Horley
- Ockendon, Chafford Hundred, Purfleet and Grays
- Cuffley, Bayford and Hertford North
- Radlett and Potters Bar
Using Oyster Pay As You Go is usually cheaper than paying cash. However, you must touch in at the start of each journey and touch out at the end to ensure you pay the correct fare – on bus and tram you need only touch in.
If you wish to know how much you will be charged for your journey, you can find single fares here. If you use your Oyster Pay As You Go for a number of journeys, the fare you will pay will be capped below the Daily Travelcard rate. For daily price capping information see here.
You can’t use Oyster on the following rail services on any journey starting or finishing outside the Pay as you go area: East Midlands Trains, Grand Central, Hull Trains, Virgin Trains, or London North Eastern Railway services.
Contactless card acceptance has recently been introduced on three routes where Oyster is not. These include the Elizabeth line from Iver to Reading; Brookmans Park to Welwyn Garden City and St Albans City to Luton Parkway. This is signified by an orange Contactless card reader.
You can purchase an extension ticket to your Travelcard, Oyster 60+ (valid after 9am) or Freedom Pass from ticket offices or Southern Railway or London Underground, London Overground and TfL Rail ticket machines if you want to travel outside the area that you existing ticket covers. This will be cheaper than buying an ordinary ticket between the last station covered by your Travelcard, Oyster 60+ or Freedom Pass and your destination.
A map of rail services where you can use Oyster Pay As You Go is available on the TfL website.
There is also an independent guide to Oyster, Oyster Fares Central which includes examples of when to use Oyster.