The transport zones of London is what determines the price of a public transport ticket, and it is very important to know what these zones are to choose the transport card that best suits you or even when choosing a hotel or accommodation, since the further away from the center, the more expensive the transport ticket is and the longer it takes to reach the tourist attractions.
London is divided into 9 radial zones, and when looking at the map of London underground zones we can see that zone 1 is the center of London, and extending concentrically outwards we have zones 2, 3, 4… up to zone 9.
What will you find in this article?
- London transport zones to consider when visiting London
- Tourist attractions
- Travelcard Prices
- Schedules and frequencies
- DLR and London Overground
- What area to stay in if you visit London
- What area to stay in if you are going to live in London
London transport zones
London is divided into 9 radial zones that start in the historic center. 95% of tourist attractions are in zones 1 and 2. Heathrow Airport is in zone 6.
When buying a metro ticket it is necessary to know in which zone the stop of origin and the one of destination are located. As we have mentioned, from the tourist point of view, unless you are staying far from the center, the usual ticket is usually the one for zones 1-2.
- As Most of the tourist attractions are in zone 1. In zone 1 you will find Famous Landmarks of the British capital, such as Oxford Street, Regent Street, Piccadilly Circus, Covent Garden, Trafalgar Square, London Eye, Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, Hyde Park, Notting Hill… among many others.
- The most visited tourist attraction that is outside zone 1 is the Camden Town Flea Market, which is in zone 2.
- Stansted and Luton airports are outside the London areas, so it is necessary to buy a specific train or bus ticket to and from these airports.
- Gatwick airport is located outside the London areas, but from January 2016 it is possible to use the oyster card to travel from this airport to the center and vice versa.
- The airports that are within the London zones are Heathrow and London City Airport. Therefore, to get to these airports it is worth with a London transport card (oyster card or travelcard).
The following tickets are valid in all the indicated zones . For example, the one for zones 1-3 allows you to take the metro in zone 3 and get out in zone 1.
- Zones 1-3 : 4.90£ (6.40 US$)
- Zones 1-5 : 5.90£ (7.70US$)
- Zones 1-6 : 6£ (7.80US$)
Since single tickets are quite expensive, we recommend the use of Oyster or Travelcard.
Schedules and frequencies
London Underground hours are approximately 5:00 a.m. to 12:00 a.m. This schedule is the departure of the trains, so, on many lines, they continue to circulate until almost 1:00 in the morning.
On Fridays and Saturdays some lines operate 24 hours a day.
The frequency depends on the line and the time of day, but if you are moving through central London, you will usually not have to wait more than 2 or 3 minutes.
DLR and London Overground
DLR (Docklands Light Railway) and London Overground are two additional lines that, although they have different names, are in practice fully integrated with the London Underground, so the network could be considered to be made up of 13 lines.
From a tourist point of view, the main interest of these lines is that the DLR reaches Greenwich.
What area to stay in if you visit London
If you are going to visit London, the closer you stay to the center, the cheaper the transport you have to use every day and the less time you will spend inside a tube or a bus. So we recommend that you look for a hotel in zones 1 or 2, but here you will find more detailed information about where to stay in London.
In which area to stay if you are going to live in London
If you are looking for a house to live in London, everything will depend a bit on where your work is located. The fewer areas you have to cross each day, the better, since you will save time and money on transportation. The houses in zone 1 are quite expensive, so when you start living in London the most normal thing is to go to an area a little further from the center, and we would advise you to take into account zones 2 and 3, since it does not take long by tube to central London and you can find accommodation at a slightly more affordable price.