December 29, 2017

The Truth about Contactless, Oystercards and the Tfl fare rise

Contactless Card

If you're a regular commuter you must be tired of all the heavy TfL advertising designed to convince you Contactless is the best thing since sliced bread...

And it's hard not to be wooed by its appeal. You never worry about topping up or wasting your time in a queue, all you need is a bank card you already own. Sounds simple enough but is it truly your best choice?

CommuterClub reviewed all the arguments and costs so you don't have to.

Breaking news: TfL is increasing fares by 3.6% from 1 January 2018 for weekly caps and all weekly, monthly and annual tickets. So if you commute regularly, you will pay more since you'll hit the higher cap every week! 

You can still avoid the fare increase with the smart CommuterClub monthly subscription, if you sign up as soon as possible!  

Start saving on your Commute

The short view: If you commute regularly (e.g. 4 days per week, 40 weeks per year) season tickets are the best value for money. However, for infrequent commuters or tourist, Contactless is the easy choice. Curious to understand why? Read on...

It's a well-kept secret in the transport industry. Rail operators make more money if you purchase their most expensive products. An annual ticket is equal to 10.2 monthlies or 40 weeklies. So, if you commute more than 40 weeks per year getting to and from work, you should be buying an annual ticket. They are the best value for money but expensive to buy up-front and rarely marketed in the industry.

This is exactly why CommuterClub exists. To bring the savings of annual tickets with the flexibility of monthlies or Contactless. It is simple: You pay for 11 months at the monthly cost and you get your 12th month free. You only get your ticket once and never need to worry about topping up or queuing for 12 months. Instead you step into the subscription economy with a Netflix like solution for your commuting cost.

See how much you could save on your Contactless trip to work with CommuterClub:

Still intrigued about Contactless vs. oyster card? Read on and we will answer all your questions and more ...


Contactless

Contactless is a great way to pay for individual trips on the tube. It's straight forward: you tap your contactless card, phone, or watch on to the card reader, just like an Oyster card, and the payment comes directly from your bank account.

Contactless payments are charged per journey but have a daily maximum you can be charged. Once you hit this daily TFL contactless 'price cap' through individual fares aggregating, you are charged no more for subsequent journeys made that day or week.

The contactless underground prices are the same as an oyster, so don't worry you don't get charged any more per journey for using your card instead of buying an Oyster.

Check out this article for a detailed explanation of the TFL contactless capping rates, and how TFL issue any contactless refunds.

OysterCards and Season Tickets

Oyster is very similar to Contactless in the way it works, and in the same way there are Oyster daily caps in the amount you pay. So, it's easy to think that Contactless is the next logical step in this technology and so Oyster cards aren't necessary anymore? Well. think again.

Since being introduced, season tickets have saved regular commuters hours of queuing when using the London Underground. Season tickets or travel cards are a flat rate pass which give you unlimited rides for the time-period they are purchased for. Meaning in turn you can save a lot more money each week if you are commuting on a regular basis.

Here's a few examples costs across of CommuterClub vs. Contactless, Weeklies and Monthly travelcards:

Zones 1-2

Daily

Weekly (Mon/Sun)

Monthly

Annual

CommuterClub

£4.15*

£29.04*

£116*

£1,394

Monthly

£4.53

£32

£127

£1,522

Weekly

£4.71

£33

£132

£1,584

Contactless

£6.60

£33

£132

£1,584

Zones 1-6

Daily

Weekly (Mon/Sun)

Monthly

Annual

CommuterClub

£7.57

£53

£212

£2,543

Monthly

£8.25

£58

£231

£2,772

Weekly

£8.60

£60

£241

£2,890

Contactless

£12.00

£60

£241

£2,890


Save £100s by Buying in Bulk

Travelcards give better value, the more you pay for upfront. This means that paying weekly is cheaper than paying daily, monthly is cheaper than paying weekly etc.

Also note, when you purchase any pre-loaded travel card for any oyster zones, it also entitles you to unlimited free bus travel across all London zones.

CommuterClub take it one step further by charging you the already money-saving monthly Oyster card rate, and then also giving you your 12th month for free.

This gives you access to the big savings of Annual Travelcards, but paid for in flexible monthly payments.

The best thing to do would be to sit down and work out how much you are currently spending a week and month for travel, and if it's cheaper for you to buy an oyster with a pre-loaded travel card then it may well save you hundreds across the year.

Commuter Club also offer exactly the same money-saving scheme on rail travel as well.

Any questions? No problem! Give us a call on 0203 476 5002.

Representative example: Credit limit: £1,200. Interest: £67 Total payable: £1,267 in 11 monthly installments of £115. Representative 10.6% APR. Interest rate: 5.6% pa (variable)