Improving buses

On average, our bus network carries more than 2 billion passengers a year - more than the rest of England combined.

i am an electric bus sign

Cleaner, greener buses

TfL buses now meet ULEZ emissions standards across the entire city

Our fleet of around 9000 buses operating across London now meet or exceed Euro VI emission standards, the same emissions standard as the Ultra Low Emission Zone. Euro VI is the latest emission standard for vehicles, reducing emissions of nitrogen oxide by up to 90%.

The fleet is made up of zero emission (at the tailpipe) buses, including electric and hydrogen, and diesel and hybrid buses, all of which all meet Euro VI emission standards.

Zero-emission buses

More than 800 zero-emission buses operate in our fleet - both single and double deck vehicles, built by various manufacturers in the UK and globally. Electric buses form a large part of our zero-emission fleet and operate across multiple routes in London.

These buses contribute to improving air quality and are also much quieter, with lower vibration levels for a more comfortable experience.

hydrogen bus

Hydrogen buses

We have 20 hydrogen fuel cell double decker buses in the fleet, helping to reduce TfL's carbon footprint, and tackle climate change. The hydrogen buses will help clean up the air and improve the health of Londoners.

Hydrogen used in a fuel cell for the bus is free from harmful emissions. The only by-product from the fuel cell is water from the chemical reaction of hydrogen with oxygen from the air, a process that produces electricity to power the bus.

These new buses will help us learn about this new technology and explore alternative zero-emission options for the network.

route 63 bus

Route 63

Buses introduced on the north-south route 63 have innovative features and cutting-edge design aimed at making them an even more attractive, green alternative to the car.

The new route 63 buses feature:

  • USB chargers and mobile phone holders in the seats
  • A more open feel, with a skylight on the upper deck, larger rear window, and handles on the backs of seats rather than vertical poles for an unobstructed view
interior of new bus on route 63
  • High back seats to make journeys more comfortable and a wood-effect floor
  • New covers for the priority seats, with a contrasting colour scheme to help differentiate them from other seats for passengers who are less able to stand
  • A larger wheelchair and buggy area
  • Upgraded CCTV cameras to provide higher-definition footage
  • New digital signs on board the buses share a wider range of live information, including the time to the next stop, disruptions and service updates for Tube and Overground services

Improving information at bus stops

The route already has next bus information at most bus shelters - new live information screens are now being trialled at many bus stops. This follows upgrades to many of the shelters along the route in 2021.

New Kent Road bus lane

Adding to the appeal of the state-of-the-art vehicles, a bus lane added to New Kent Road is already making journeys faster and more reliable. The route is already high frequency, with a bus every 5-8 minutes in the morning peak.

Jobs and skills

These buses were built by ADL, the country's largest bus and coach manufacturer, in Scarborough. ADL employs 2,000 people in skilled jobs and also supports a successful apprenticeship scheme. Other London buses are produced around the UK in places such as Ballymena and Falkirk, showing that investment in the Capital's transport network helps level up the whole country.

Improving bus routes

We're making a number of changes along our bus routes to improve the experience for customers. These include:

  • More convenient routes to key amenities such as shopping centres and hospitals
  • Quicker journeys on selected routes by giving buses priority on the roads, meaning buses get ahead of traffic
  • Increased space on buses by introducing double-deck buses on certain routes
  • Extra buses during busy times such as morning and evening peak, school runs and Saturday and Sunday shopping times

We consult customers on changes to bus routes. See our consultations website, Have Your Say.

cover of bus action plan

Bus action plan

To support the Mayor's Transport Strategy, we published our long term Bus action plan in March 2022. The aim is to attract more customers to the bus network and help the capital become net zero by 2030.

Buses are already the most used form of public transport in the Capital - our plan will create an even more attractive alternative to car use by focusing on five areas:

  • An inclusive customer experience: a modern, relevant bus network that allows for spontaneous, independent travel, including improved customer information and bus station refurbishment, with actions including upgrading more existing bus stops to meet the wheelchair accessible standard
  • Safety and security: a safe, secure bus network, with no one killed on or by a bus by 2030, and with all elements of the Bus Safety Standard implemented by 2024. Also ensuring all customers and staff feel confident on the bus network travelling day and night, including through improved bus driver training
  • Faster journeys: a faster and more efficient bus network, with journeys 10% quicker than in 2015, with initiatives including the aim to introduce 25km of new and improved bus lanes by 2025
  • Improved connections: a bus network better suited to longer trips with better interchanges, especially in outer London, and ensuring London residents remain close to a bus stop
  • Decarbonisation and climate resilience: a zero-emission bus fleet to tackle climate change and improve air quality, working with operators, boroughs and suppliers to reduce the cost and difficulty of infrastructure upgrades needed to enable the transition of the bus fleet. Plus safeguarding the network from extreme weather conditions

Bus Priority Programme

We're investing in enhancements across London's bus network to keep it efficient and reliable. By reducing journey times on key strategic routes we're making sure we provide the best quality of service to our customers.

We aim to:

  • Add more continuous bus lanes - these cross junctions with bus lanes on either side and enforced yellow box junctions
  • Improve existing bus lanes to make sure they are wide enough for bus passengers and cyclists
  • Increase operational hours of bus lanes to cover peak periods, making them 24/7 where possible. This is supported by increased enforcement, reviewing kerbside activity and further encouraging bus drivers to report infringements
  • Reduce dwell times and make bus stops more accessible so that it's easier for buses to access bus stops from the carriageway and ensure passengers can get on and off safely
  • Upgrade traffic signals to prioritise buses, including bus-only movements