March 2019 Oyster Extensions Confirmed

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by MJN11, 3 Feb 2019.

  1. jon0844

    jon0844 Veteran Member

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    I don't know why everyone assumes fares are going to be slashed. Maybe they hope Hertford or WGC will become part of zone 6 and cost the same as when driving to Cockfosters or something.

    There are some benefits and definitely some downsides.
     
  2. Hadders

    Hadders Established Member

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    I wrote this is the thread about consultation about extending PAYG but it is very relevant here as I used Hertford North as an example. Many passengers face huge increases if they use Oyster/Contactless.

    Consider Hertford North.

    At weekends a Super Off Peak Travelcard is £14.50. A regular leisure traveller is likely to use a Network Railcard making the cost £9.50
    We don't know what the PAYG charges will be yet but it's probably fair to assume they will be the same as Hertford East where an Off Peak Single journey to Liverpool Street is £5.90. A Network Railcard cannot be used with PAYG.

    The daily off peak cap from Hertford East to Zones 1-8 is £18.80. Even someone making a return trip to London plus a couple of Zone 1 underground journeys will pay £16.60

    That's a hell of an increase for the convenience of PAYG. The solution - carry on using paper tickets. But most people understandably assume PAYG is cheaper, after all that was a big part of the marketing campaign when PAYG was bought in years ago. The very real danger is that people will switch to PAYG, pay more than they need to meanwhile paper tickets will be withdrawn as they will say there's a lack of demand for them.
     
  3. route101

    route101 Established Member

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    Few weeks ago i was confused , i used my Osyter to Cheshunt then bought ticket from there to Hertford East.
     
  4. James Heck

    James Heck Member

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    Epsom DOWNS, and Tattenham Corner however are both in Zone6.
     
  5. JonathanH

    JonathanH Established Member

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    So what? Both are terminus stations on lightly used lines where they might as well encourage people to travel the full length rather than drive or use other means to get to the first Zone 6 station. If it was really attractive to travel from these stations rather than Epsom, people would do so. Epsom is a primary destination and well used station, it isn't in London and so there is no reason for it to be in Zone 6. In particular, it would set a dangerous precedent for future extensions of Oyster and Contactless (from the point of view of the operator).
     
  6. si404

    si404 Member

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  7. Aictos

    Aictos On Moderation

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    Hertford North, Cuffley and Bayford will see Oyster middle of next month, no exact dates given by Great Northern but it shows my reasoning that just because Hertford sees Oyster doesn't mean that Watton At Stone or Stevenage needs to have Oyster too is correct.
     
  8. MikeWh

    MikeWh Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    Until I know who the contributor is I can't confirm or deny anything.
    Yes, Oyster to Hertford North is next.
     
  9. Hadders

    Hadders Established Member

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    Just passed slowly through Cuffley on a non-stop train.

    Oyster validator is installed on the London bound platform next to the smartcard reader. I wonder if the smartcard reader will be removed when Oyster goes live or whether it still needs to be maintained for passengers holding season tickets on The Key?
     
  10. bluelionman

    bluelionman New Member

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    I'm brand new to this forum was searching online for who decides the boundaries for the travel zones and decides the prices and it brought me here.

    I live in Merstham which thanks to this thread I have learned is Zone 13 (never knew that just assumed it was an Oyster extension area). I commute daily from Merstham to Gatwick Airport and back again which off peak is £2.50 each way. I use Oyster for convinence but is 10p dearer a day for me over buying a paper ticket which is (Off Peak day return - £4.90).

    What really bothers me is how much cheaper being in the zones is to outside. I'm the first station outside the travelcard fare zones going South towards Gatwick. I go to London avoiding zone 1 for sports games at Wembley. Currently I go Merstham - Clapham Junction - Willesden Junction - Wembley Central tapping on the pink readers to show I've not gone via zone 1 and this is £5.90 each way. However 1 Station nearer to London (Coulsdon South) that is in the travelcard zones is just £3 each way - but due to a TFL promo I see in Metro (see picture) will be £1.50 this winter.
    IMG_20190222_124018.jpg
    I wanted to find out who makes the rules and get my voice heard to stop ripping tourists off and argue for Greater London to be extended fare wise and Oyster wise to Gatwick (as its known internationally as London Gatwick). It sucks being in the twilight zone between the Greater London fare zone and Gatwick as you don't get the cheaper Oyster fares as your considered outside the zones and there's no night bus service either despite you can get a red TFL bus in the daytime using Oyster as far as Redhill (405) from West Croydon.

    I forget the amount of times if I done a late night out in London I can get a N68 bus back as far as Coulsdon South station (end of route is actually Tudor Rose, Old Coulsdon) and then either wait for first train of next morning, finish off with a cab or walk - have done all 3 options and every time wished there was a N405 service!

    So who made the travelcard farezones and do they ever get revised - after all London is expanding out all the time and when Crossrail goes live becoming the Elizabeth Line surely that will all be Oyster enabled to meaning if they don't extend the TfL flat zonal fares to the outer extremities it a be a confusing nightmare to work out best option when traveling cost wise.
     
  11. swt_passenger

    swt_passenger Veteran Member

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    There are people who understand the details better than I, but I don’t think “Zone 13” is meant to be a public facing term, and won’t appear on maps. Oyster PAYG currently only has a limited number of zones to play with, I think 15 maximum has been stated before.
     
  12. MikeWh

    MikeWh Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    Welcome to the forum!

    Zone 13 is a bit of a fiddle. It's linked with maximum journey times mainly, and travelcard season coverage, but that doesn't apply to Merstham to Gatwick. That £1.50 promotion also doesn't apply to Couldson South - it's only those routes where the fares charged are the same as the Underground/DLR. That is most of London Overground, but definitely doesn't include Southern or Thameslink in your area.

    Travelcard zones. Zones 1-6 roughly cover the Greater London area where council tax payers contribute to TfL through the London Assembly. Zone 6 has been extended to cover some branch lines (eg Caterham, Tattenham Corner, Epping) with funding from the local authority concerned. Zones 7-9 originally covered the extremities of London Underground in the North West (Amersham, Chesham, Watford High Street) although there have been some new additions to allow Oyster extensions (Dartford, Swanley, Brentwood, Cheshunt). Fares for these areas are still set by the TOCs as are the outer zone extensions (Gatwick, Grays, Watford Junction, Hertford East, Shenfield and the latest Epsom). There are further extensions planned (Hertford North, Welwyn Garden City and Reading). True zonal fares will not extend all the way to Reading in the same way that they don't extend to Hertford, Shenfield, Gatwick etc.

    Zones 1-6 are decided by TfL in consultation with the TOCs where necessary. They do get changed, most recently creating the zone 2/3 sausage between Stratford and Canning Town.
     
  13. bluelionman

    bluelionman New Member

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    Thanks for reply (& welcome) didn't realise it was paid for by local authorities via a tax, makes me not feel so hard done by now.
     
  14. londonbridge

    londonbridge Member

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    BBC London News have been reporting that Epsom commuters have been complaining after finding that using Oyster is costing them more, and London Travelwatch are calling for a ticketing/fares review.
     
    Last edited: 7 Mar 2019
  15. jon0844

    jon0844 Veteran Member

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    Why did they assume Oyster would make things cheaper at all times? The same will happen when WGC and Hertford North get Oyster, with people - perhaps encouraged by our local MP - already of the opinion that Oyster is going to be dirt cheap. I don't know if they're thinking Zone 6 is going to be extended, or forgot about the evening peak, or what - but I am not sure there suddenly needs to be a fares review because people didn't understand exactly what they were getting.

    I think some are thinking Oyster means TfL is taking over operations too, or setting the fares.
     
  16. MikeWh

    MikeWh Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    Well it's certainly a mess. Epsom is run by GTR, hence adding Oyster was a franchise commitment for them, but SWR set the any permitted fares and thus are responsible for setting the Oyster single fares. They have to do so in a way compatible with the TfL Oyster system and with DfT overseeing the whole project. I'm frankly amazed they managed to get agreement.
     
  17. adrock1976

    adrock1976 Established Member

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    Has there been anything at all mentioned whether Oyster being extended from Hampton to Shepperton?

    It is a short dead end branchline with that part being in historic Middlesex, which most of Middlesex got swallowed up into Greater London many moons ago.
     
  18. JonathanH

    JonathanH Established Member

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    Epsom has actually got off fairly lightly from the introduction of Oyster, certainly compared to Redhill. The fares that most commuters would be subject to aren't too far out of line with what they would be currently paying. The weekly cap is an obvious exception.

    There is a material danger that people in the Home Counties are heading for increases in train fares which they are not expecting particularly for travel in the evening peak and at weekends.
     
  19. MikeWh

    MikeWh Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    SWR would have to pay for it and there's little to no incentive for them to do so. The best hope is the co-ordinated expansion of PAYG currently being consulted on by the DfT.
    The weekly cap is only mentioned for the benefit of contactless users, as with the Redhill/Gatwick extension. The advice is to use traditional season tickets if you commute 5 days a week.
     
  20. mattdickinson

    mattdickinson Member

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  21. JonathanH

    JonathanH Established Member

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    Last edited: 9 Mar 2019
  22. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    What does this mean?
     
  23. JonathanH

    JonathanH Established Member

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    There was some speculation up thread that Oyster 'Zone 13' used for Merstham to Horley was GTR's zone in terms of pricing and therefore would be used for stations between Radlett and Harpenden.

    If Radlett is not in Oyster then it must have its own fare scale outwith the constraints of the 15 Oyster 'zones'.
     
    Last edited: 9 Mar 2019
  24. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    Yes that would make sense.
     
  25. Aictos

    Aictos On Moderation

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    Looks like more delays before Oyster comes to Great Northern, last month their social media team stated it was middle of March now its sometime next month... As to Thameslink, they don't have any dates at all.

    No idea if the delay is down to GTR or TfL or what even the delay is?
     
  26. si404

    si404 Member

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  27. Hadders

    Hadders Established Member

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    A bit of a mess by the looks of it then. Railcard holders will continue to need to purchase paper tickets. I hope advertising at the station makes it very clear that contactless might not be the cheapest way.
     
  28. higthomas

    higthomas Member

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    So given they seem to have finally overrun the amount of zones oyster can support, when are they going to introduce a version of oyster which can handle more zones? (Or at least add the ability to link railcards with contactless cards)
     
  29. Hadders

    Hadders Established Member

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    In many cases off peak travel will be cheaper with paper tickets, especially at weekends where Super Off Peak tickets are available.

    Although I'm generally in favour of extending Oyster/contactless I have a real fear that this is going to result in a huge price increase for off peak travellers vis the back door. This has already happened at Epsom, as I understand it.
     
  30. Haywain

    Haywain Established Member

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    Part of the reason for this at Epsom is the TOC specific fares for Southern services, which Oyster can't handle.
     

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