Oyster Pay As You Go or Travelcard

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Ztruman

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We are coming to London June 11, 2012. We are considering buying a 7 day travel card, but are making a few trips out of zones 1and 2 and are wondering if a pay as you go oyster card would be better. We will be there until June 16. We are going from euston out to watford junction June 13 around 8:30 and returning that same afternoon. How much is it to add on to a travel card for zones 1and 2 to go out there?
 
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yorkie

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We are coming to London June 11, 2012. We are considering buying a 7 day travel card, but are making a few trips out of zones 1and 2 and are wondering if a pay as you go oyster card would be better. We will be there until June 16. We are going from euston out to watford junction June 13 around 8:30 and returning that same afternoon. How much is it to add on to a travel card for zones 1and 2 to go out there?
Welcome to the forum :)

An Oyster card is an electronic medium, like a paper ticket.

Oyster Pay As You Go (PAYG) is a product that is available with Oyster cards where you are charged for the journeys you make up to a daily cap (you can find the fare for any single journey here - in some cases "more than one fare" will be available depending on the route you take).

Travelcards are another product, that are available either on paper or on Oyster cards, that involve paying up front for unlimited travel in the relevant zone(s) during the period of validity.

If you are doing a lot of journeys in Zone 1/2, then your best bet may be to purchase a Zone 1-2 Travelcard onto an Oyster card. If you ever go beyond the Zones on your Oyster card, you will only pay the appropriate PAYG fare for the additional zone(s) that you travel through on your journey. Oyster allows a Travelcard and PAYG to be used together for one journey, to the benefit of passengers.

The price of a 7 Day Travelcard for Zones 1 & 2 is £29.20.

The cost of extending such a Travelcard to Watford Junction would cost £1.50 each way, providing the Travelcard was held on Oyster.

(For completeness, I will point out that Day Travelcards and out-boundary Travelcards are only available on paper tickets, not on Oyster cards, however that doesn't apply to this query).
 

causton

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You can buy a travelcard to have on your Oyster card and then add credit to it, to use PAYG as well, on the same card. So I would go ahead and buy a 7 day travelcard as that would most likely be cheaper, then use Oyster to go there and back.

You can see the prices of tickets here:
http://www.tfl.gov.uk/tickets/14416.aspx

So a 7-day travelcard costs £29.20 for zones 1 and 2.

If you have a travelcard Zones 1 and 2 you will only be charged zones 3 to Watford Junction (shown as Z3-9+Watford Junction on the list)
so £3.70 extra to Watford Junction in the peak (8:30am will be - as the fares page linked to above states "Peak Oyster single fares apply from 06:30-09:30 and from 16.00-19-00 Monday to Friday (except public holidays)")
and £1.50 extra to Watford Junction off peak (the return will be off peak presumably)

:)
 
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yorkie

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Just to clarify, the peak times for Euston to Watford Jn (and intermediate stations) are 1600-1900, while the peak times for Watford Jn to Euston are 0630-0930, therefore both outward and return journeys will be charged at the off peak rate in this case.

Yes, this isn't generally the case, as for most journeys peak times are both 0630-0930 and 1600-1900, but this is an exception.

To look up the fare that would be charged, use the TfL single fare finder and look up Willesden Jn to Watford Jn and vice-versa.
 

BrianTheLion

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Remember Railcard discounts could come into the equation here if the OP was to purchase a travelcard as supposed to Oyster. I certainly found it cheaper using my friends & family card back in January
 

Oscar

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Remember Railcard discounts could come into the equation here if the OP was to purchase a travelcard as supposed to Oyster. I certainly found it cheaper using my friends & family card back in January
Do you mean a paper Travelcard rather than a Travelcard on Oyster?
 

yorkie

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Yes, it depends on the journeys being made as well as any entitlement, which in the case of the F&F Railcard will be whether or not there are any Under 16s (aged under 16 on the date the Railcard was bought) present. It won't be of any use for an 0830 weekday departure though.
 

Ztruman

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Thank you! We want to buy the 7 day travelcard at a railway station to get the child discounts. How late in the day are those offices open? We have passport size photos already, but are wondering the hours of operation to buy the travelcard on the oyster with a photo to get the child discount. Also, which stations can we do that at?
 

causton

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Thank you! We want to buy the 7 day travelcard at a railway station to get the child discounts. How late in the day are those offices open? We have passport size photos already, but are wondering the hours of operation to buy the travelcard on the oyster with a photo to get the child discount. Also, which stations can we do that at?
To get a child Oyster card you have to wait a month or more for the application to be processed - for child discount I think paper travelcards will be best :)

The only relevant thing I can find about opening hours is this old document:

http://www.tfl.gov.uk/assets/downlo...cket-office-opening-hours-for-lu-stations.pdf

:)
 
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