Festive travel

In the lead up to Christmas and New Year, London becomes busier with shoppers and party-goers making the most of the Capital's offerings. Also, between Friday 23 December 2016 and Monday 2 January 2017, there will be service changes because of Christmas operational hours, and essential planned work on parts of the public transport and road networks.

Here's a summary of the changes, with links to full details.

Throughout

To make the most of London over the festive period, consider all your travel options and plan ahead. Here are some tips for travelling during this busy time:
  • Oxford Circus Tube station is especially busy 17:30-18:30. You could have a quicker and more comfortable journey if you travel outside this time
  • When Tube stations are busy, shopping areas like Oxford Street, Regent Street and Bond Street can also be reached by walking or cycling
  • If you're not familiar with London, find out how to get around in our visitors section
  • Read our tips on staying safe, especially if you're enjoying the festivities into the night
  • Winter Wonderland takes place in Hyde Park until Monday 2 January 2017. Hyde Park Corner and Marble Arch stations are expected to be very busy, but Green Park, Victoria and Knightsbridge stations are a short walk away from Hyde Park too.

    Travel changes and information

    Throughout the festive period, please note the following:


    Thursday 1 December

    The Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony takes place in Trafalgar Square. Embankment and Leicester Square Tube stations and roads in the area will be busier than usual.

    Charing Cross station will also be busier because of improvement works to the ticket hall. Instead, please use Leicester Square for the Piccadilly line and Embankment for the Bakerloo, Circle, District and Northern lines, leaving more time for your journey.


    Sunday 4 December

    Belgravia Christmas Market takes place 11:00-17:00 on Elizabeth Street, causing road closures 08:00-19:00. Affected buses are still to be confirmed, but last year only the C1 was affected.

    Sloane Square and Victoria Tube stations will be busier than usual.


    Friday 23 December

    • TfL Rail: Runs normally until 23:00, then there's a reduced service
    • All other transport modes run normally

    Christmas Eve

    • Tube: Early finish (complete your journey around 23:30) with no Night Tube, Charing Cross station closed until 05:30
    • Buses: 24 hour services finish around midnight, no night services
    • Driving: The Congestion Charge won't apply
    • London Overground: Early finish (from 21:30), no service between Romford and Upminster, Gospel Oak to Barking closure continues
    • National Rail: Changes include Paddington services run from Ealing Broadway instead
    • Heathrow Airport: No National Rail service at Heathrow Airport
    • Taxis: An extra £4 per journey after 20:00
    • DLR: Early finish (around 22:50)
    • TfL Rail: Replacement buses between Chadwell Heath and Shenfield. Trains every 15 minutes on the rest of the line until 22:00
    • Trams: Less frequent service after 18:00. Last trams at usual times
    • Coaches: Limited coach service from around 17:00
    • Rivers: Early finishes on RB1 and RB1X, Sunday service on RB4, no service on RB2 or RB6
    • Emirates Air Line: Open 08:00-20:00

    Full details for Christmas Eve.


    Christmas Day

    No service on public transport. Limited coach services, and black cabs will cost an extra £4 per journey.

    Full details for Christmas Day travel.


    Boxing Day

    • Tube: Late start (07:45) with Sunday frequency service, closures on the District, Circle, Waterloo & City and Bakerloo lines
    • Buses: Sunday service
    • London Overground: No service
    • Driving: The Congestion Charge won't apply
    • National Rail: Changed services include no GWR service
    • Heathrow Airport: No National Rail services at Heathrow Airport
    • DLR: A service every 10 minutes
    • TfL Rail: No service
    • Trams: Sunday service with a weekday start and finish, no Line 4 service
    • Taxis: An extra £4 per journey
    • Rivers: No service
    • Emirates Air Line: Open 08:00-23:00

    Full details for Boxing Day travel.


    Tuesday 27 December

    • Tube: Sunday frequency service but weekday start and finish times, closures on the District and Circle lines
    • Buses: A weekend service in the day, usual Tuesday service at night
    • London Overground: Saturday frequency service, no service between Romford and Upminster, and Gospel Oak to Barking closure continues
    • Driving: The Congestion Charge won't apply
    • National Rail: Changes include Paddington services run from Ealing Broadway instead
    • Heathrow Airport: No National Rail services at Heathrow Airport
    • DLR: A Saturday service
    • TfL Rail: No trains. Replacement buses between Stratford and Shenfield, except Maryland
    • Trams: Sunday service with a weekday start and finish, no Line 4 service
    • Taxis: An extra £4 per journey until 06:00
    • Rivers: A one-boat service on the Woolwich Ferry, weekend service on RB2 and RB4
    • Emirates Air Line: Open 08:00-23:00

    Full details for travel on Tuesday 27 December.


    Wednesday 28 December

    • Tube: Saturday frequency service, plus closures on the District and Circle lines
    • Buses: Generally a Saturday service in the day, usual Wednesday service at night
    • London Overground: Saturday frequency service (weekday on Liverpool Street branches), no service between Romford and Upminster, and Gospel Oak to Barking closure continues
    • Driving: The Congestion Charge won't apply
    • National Rail: Changes include Paddington services run from Ealing Broadway instead
    • Heathrow Airport: No National Rail services at Heathrow Airport
    • DLR: Saturday service
    • TfL Rail: Replacement buses between Chadwell Heath and Shenfield. Trains every 15 minutes on the rest of the line
    • Trams: Saturday service with weekday start and finish times
    • Rivers: One-boat service on the Woolwich Ferry, no service on RB1X

    Full details for travel on Wednesday 28 December.


    Thursday 29 December

    • Tube: Saturday frequency service, plus closures on the District and Circle lines
    • Buses: Generally a Saturday service in the day, usual Thursday service at night
    • London Overground: Saturday frequency service except weekday frequency on Liverpool Street branches, no service between Romford and Upminster, and Gospel Oak to Barking closure continues
    • Driving: The Congestion Charge won't apply
    • National Rail: Changes include Paddington services run from Ealing Broadway instead
    • Heathrow Airport: No National Rail services at Heathrow Airport
    • DLR: Saturday service
    • TfL Rail: Replacement buses between Chadwell Heath and Shenfield. Trains every 15 minutes on the rest of the line
    • Trams: Saturday service with weekday start and finish times
    • Rivers: One-boat service on the Woolwich Ferry, no service on RB1X

    Full details for travel on Thursday 29 December.


    Friday 30 December

    • Tube: Saturday frequency service, Night Tube runs as normal, closures on the District and Circle lines
    • Buses: Generally a Saturday service in the day, usual Friday service at night
    • London Overground: Saturday frequency service except weekday frequency on Liverpool Street branches, no service between Romford and Upminster, and the Gospel Oak to Barking closure continues
    • National Rail: Changes include a reduced service at Heathrow Airport and at Paddington
    • Driving: The Congestion Charge won't apply
    • DLR: Saturday service
    • TfL Rail: Replacement buses between Chadwell Heath and Shenfield. Trains every 15 minutes on the rest of the line
    • Trams: Saturday service with weekday start and finish times
    • Rivers: One-boat service on the Woolwich Ferry, no service on RB1X

    Full details for travel on Friday 30 December.


    New Year's Eve

    New Year's Eve fireworks take place in central London, causing extra transport changes from the afternoon.

    • Free travel on the TfL network between 23:45-04:30
    • Tube: Services run throughout the night, but some stations will be closed
    • Buses: Saturday service, with diversions in central London from early afternoon. Some day routes run into the night
    • London Overground: Saturday service, no service between Romford and Upminster, and the Gospel Oak to Barking closure continues. Some services run throughout the night
    • National Rail: Service changes
    • Driving: The Congestion Charge won't apply, and some roads in central London will close
    • DLR: Services run throughout the night
    • TfL Rail: Replacement buses between Chadwell Heath and Shenfield. Trains every 15 minutes on the rest of the line, including throughout the night
    • Trams: Services run throughout the night
    • Taxis: An extra £4 per journey after 20:00
    • Cycling: Some docking stations in central London are suspended
    • Rivers: No service on RB6, early finishes on RB1 and RB1X

    Full details for New Year's Eve travel.


    New Year's Day 2017

    • Tube: Reduced Sunday service after 12:00
    • London Overground: No service between Romford and Upminster, Gospel Oak to Barking closure continues
    • National Rail: Service changes
    • Driving: The Congestion Charge won't apply
    • DLR: Overnight service until 10:00
    • TfL Rail: Replacement buses between Chadwell Heath and Shenfield. Trains every 15 minutes on the rest of the line
    • Trams: No Line 4 service
    • Taxis: An extra £4 per journey
    • Cycling: Some docking stations in central London are suspended
    • Rivers: No service on the Woolwich Ferry or RB6

    Full details for New Year's Day 2017 travel.


    Monday 2 January 2017

    • Tube: Saturday frequency service
    • Buses: Sunday service in the day, Monday service at night
    • London Overground: Saturday frequency service, no service between Romford and Upminster, Gospel Oak to Barking closure continues
    • National Rail: Service changes
    • Driving: The Congestion Charge won't apply
    • DLR: Saturday service
    • TfL Rail: Replacement buses between Chadwell Heath and Shenfield. Trains every 15 minutes on the rest of the line
    • Trams: Sunday service, no Line 4 service
    • Taxis: Until 06:00, an extra £4 per journey
    • Cycling: Some docking stations in central London are suspended
    • Rivers: One-boat Woolwich Ferry service, no service on RB6, weekend service on RB2 and RB4
    • Emirates Air Line: Open between 08:00-23:00

    Full details for travel on Monday 2 January 2017.


    Tuesday 3 January 2017

    The Congestion Charge applies again, and normal service returns to public transport except:

    • Tube: Lambeth North continues to stay closed until 11 February 2017, and Lancaster Gate closed from today until August 2017
    • London Overground: Gospel Oak to Barking closure continues until February 2017
    • TfL Rail:No service between Brentwood and Shenfield until late May
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