Cashless London buses - the world’s not your Oyster
Looming TFL plans to make London buses cashless have come under fire, after a recent report found that 2,115 passengers were left stranded every day last year because of problems with their Oyster cards.
If your card runs out, gets nicked, or ends up down the back of the telly, London bus drivers are not inclined to joyfully wave your through with a smile. You are walking, mate.
And the damning new figures from the London Assembly Green Party show that the transition from cash to cards probably isn’t going to be seamless.
London buses will no longer accept cash from July 6th. Meanwhile, Boris has tried to calm things down by tweeting that ‘We will be extra understanding if your card has run out.’
TFL have also introduced ‘One More Journey’, which entitles you to one free trip if your Oyster card has run out. But although critics agree that’s a step in the right direction, they still think there’s a higher chance that people will be stranded.
Darren Johnson AM said: ‘There are over two thousand Oyster Cards a day which are actually reported as stolen, lost or no longer working, but the number of people who suddenly find themselves without a functioning card is likely to be even higher.’
However, TFL say that less than one percent of bus journeys are paid for using cash. Leon Daniels from TFL said:
‘If a passenger’s Oyster card is lost, stolen or in very rare cases not working, they will be able to pay using a contactless payment card or visit our extended Oyster Ticket Stop network to get a replacement. Bus drivers are also being provided with refreshed guidance to deal with vulnerable passengers.’
'Refreshed guidance.' ie: don’t kick the old lady who doesn't even have a bank account - let alone a contactless debit card - off the bus too hard...