Commuters are set to feel the pinch of a price hike for rail and bus services in the capital as part of efforts to save struggling TfL services.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, today announced that fares across London’s transport network will rise by 4.8 per cent from 1 March.
The price hike comes as part of a short-term funding arrangement with the government and will help London’s transport network become financially sustainable by 2023, Khan said.
“Since TfL’s finances were decimated by the pandemic, the Government has set strict conditions as part of the emergency funding deals to keep essential transport services running in London,” said Khan.
Under upcoming changes, tube fares within Zone 1 will increase for the first time in six years, from £2.40 to £2.50. Meanwhile, bus and tram ‘Hopper’ fares, introduced by the Mayor and allowing unlimited journeys within an hour, will increase by 10p to £1.65. The daily fare cap will jump by 30p to £4.95 – the price of three single journeys.
“We have been forced into this position by the Government and the way it continues to refuse to properly fund TfL, but I have done everything in my power to keep fares as affordable as possible,” Khan continued.
TfL’s central government grant ended in 2019 and it was forced to generate most of its income from fare revenues and advertising – both of which went into steep decline at the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The government has provided more than £4bn in emergency funding to Transport for London since the start of the pandemic, placing TfL under pressure to seek other forms of financing. In December, Khan announced plans to hike London council tax by £20 per month and cut back on tube and bus services to help cover the network’s funding shortfall.
The newly announced rise is the biggest since 2012, when former London mayor Boris Johnson hiked prices. It is Khan’s second TfL fare rise, having frozen prices between 2016 and 2021. Since Mr Khan came to power in 2016, fares have risen by 13 per cent according to City Hall, compared with 42 per cent in the eight years Johnson was mayor.