From Wednesday 31 January, bus users across London can make as many journeys as they want within an hour for the price of one, thanks to the extension of Sadiq Khan’s landmark ‘Hopper’ fare.
Originally launched in September 2016, the ‘Hopper’ fare has already helped millions of passengers make affordable bus or tram journeys across London. From Wednesday 31 January, anyone using pay as you go can now make unlimited bus and tram journeys within one hour, fulfilling a key manifesto pledge of the Mayor.
The upgrade allows passengers to travel on Tube or rail services in between their bus journeys, which wasn’t possible before, helping even more people save money. It is estimated by Transport for London (TfL) that around 13,000 additional passengers will now benefit from the unlimited ‘Hopper’ fare every single day.
More than 140 million journeys have been made using the ‘Hopper’ fare since it was launched by Sadiq, of which around three million involved traveling on a tram as part of the journey. The latest figures from TfL show that around 350,000 journeys are being made every weekday using the ‘Hopper’ fare.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “I’m delighted that from [Wednesday 31 January] thousands more Londoners will be able to benefit from our landmark Hopper Fare.
“The Hopper has been a huge success so far with over 140 million journeys … [and now] Londoners will be able to change buses as many times as they want in an hour – whether commuting to work, or popping to the shops and back.
“The previous Mayor said it couldn’t be done, but alongside my TfL fares freeze, the expanded ‘Hopper’ is a key part of my commitment to make London a more affordable place to live and work.”
Janet Cooke, Chief Executive of London TravelWatch said: ‘The move to make the hopper fare unlimited will make bus and tram travel even more affordable for passengers. This will particularly benefit people on lower incomes, including those living in outer London that our recent research has shown often have to make long or complex journeys to work as they cannot afford to live in central London.’
Shashi Verma, Chief Technology Officer at Transport for London said: “The Hopper fare has already helped millions of people travel for less, and thanks to these latest improvements to our ticketing system, we can now offer even more affordable journeys to customers. This is one of the many ways that we are trying to make life in London easier and encourage people to leave their cars at home in favour of less polluting public transport.”
Stephen Joseph, Chief Executive of the Campaign for Better Transport, said: “This is great news for Londoners, who can now enjoy even more flexible journeys. This new Hopper fare will be especially welcome for those on low incomes and will help encourage even more people to switch to public transport. London leads the way in flexible, smart ticketing and this latest addition makes public transport a no brainer for Londoners.”
The continuing success of the ‘Hopper’ will help encourage people across London to switch from their cars to public transport – supporting the Mayor’s wider work to clean up London’s air and improve the local environment. The ‘Hopper’ is of particular benefit to Londoners on lower incomes, who rely on bus services more to get around, as well as those with pushchairs and small children.
The introduction of the ‘Hopper’ fare forms a key part of the Mayor’s wider fares package to make life easier for Londoners, including a four-year fares freeze on all TfL services until 2020.
In 2017, TfL launched its new app which allows Oyster card users to check their pay as you go balance, purchase travelcards and top up their card with just a few quick taps on their smartphone. They can then be added after 30 minutes by simply touching the Oyster card on the yellow card reader on any of London’s 9,000 buses or at any Tube or rail station, tram stop or River Bus pier as part of a journey.
Throughout 2018, further improvements to the Oyster and Contactless system will also be introduced, including:
- Adding the ability to view journey history for Contactless pay as you go journeys in the TfL app;
- Introducing pay as you go on the Elizabeth line, which, once fully open, will see services running from Reading and Heathrow in the west to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east by December 2019;
- Introducing weekly capping on Oyster to bring it in line with Contactless.
For more information about the ‘Hopper’ fare, please visit www.tfl.gov.uk/hopper