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Transport in London over Christmas and New Year

Your guide to reduced transport timetables and service disruptions across the 2016 festive season

© Sung Kuk Kim

Getting around town at Christmas time can be challenging thanks to reduced timetables on the tube, buses and railways. Fortunately, Time Out is here to help smooth the way. Each service and each tube line has a Twitter account, which is a good way to keep up with closures and disruptions. Find the ones you're interested in on TfL’s social media page.

We can’t predict the weather, obviously, so note that the info below may be subject to change due to adverse conditions (snow!), so check your route directly before travelling.

Note that there’s no service at all on London’s public transport on Christmas Day and there’s free travel from 11.45pm on New Year’s Eve until 4.30am on New Year’s Day. Sorted.

RECOMMENDED: Find some festive fun with our guide to Christmas in London.

Transport over Christmas and New Year

Tube

Tube

On Christmas Eve, a normal service will run throughout the day (to help last-minute Christmas shoppers, no doubt). There will be no night tube services and last trains will be earlier, finishing at around 11.30pm. 

There will be no service across the London Underground on Christmas Day.

On Boxing Day the tube will start running at 7.45am and then operate with a Sunday frequency. The Waterloo & City line will not be running, and there will be disruptions to service on the District line, Circle line and Bakerloo line, so check before travelling.

On New Year’s Eve the tube will run throughout the night, with free travel between 11.45pm and 4.30am, which is really very handy indeed. And then on New Year’s Day it will run as normal until noon, when a reduced Sunday service comes into effect.

Overground

Overground

On Christmas Eve the last Overground trains will leave at the slightly earlier time of 9.30pm.

There will be no service on the London Overground on Christmas Day or Boxing Day.

On New Year’s Eve there will be a Saturday service on all routes, but no service between Romford and Upminster. There’s free travel on New Year’s Eve from 11.45pm to 4.30am and the following lines will run at night:

Stratford–Camden Road: Last train leaves Stratford at 3am, last train leaves Camden Road at 3am.
Highbury & Islington–West Croydon: Last train leaves Highbury & Islington at 2.52am, last train leaves West Croydon at 3.56am.
Highbury & Islington–Crystal Palace: Last train leaves Highbury & Islington at 3.02am, last train leaves Crystal Palace at 3.35am.
Liverpool Street–Enfield Town/Cheshunt: Hourly throughout the night.

On New Year’s Day, the usual Sunday timetable will operate, but there’ll be no service between Romford and Upminster.

DLR

DLR

On Christmas Eve, the DLR will finish early, with the last trains at 10.50pm.

There will be no service on the DLR on Christmas Day.

On Boxing Day the DLR will run every 10 minutes.

On New Year’s Eve, the DLR will run a Saturday service with free travel from 11.45pm until 4.30am. These services will run every 15 minutes throughout the night:

Bank and Lewisham
Stratford and Canary Wharf
Tower Gateway and Beckton
Bank and Woolwich Arsenal
Stratford International and Canning Town


On New Year’s Day, there will be an overnight service until 10am, when a Sunday timetable will kick in.

Buses

Buses

On Christmas Eve, buses will run normally throughout the day, there’ll be no night buses and 24-hour services will stop around midnight.

There will be no London bus service on Christmas Day.

On Boxing Day, pretty much every single route will run a Sunday service.

On New Year’s Eve, a regular service will run with free travel from 11.45pm until 4.30am, but there will be diversions in central London from early afternoon due to the NYE firework display. The following ‘Bus Hubs’ will be set up once all road closures are in place and act as pick-up and drop-off points:

Elephant & Castle: for buses towards south-east, south and south-west London
Holborn Station: for buses towards north-east and east London
Oxford Circus: for east, north and north-west London
Goodge Street: for north and north-east London
Green Park: for west and south-west London
Victoria: for south, south-west and north-west London

On New Year’s Day, there will be a normal Sunday service on all routes.

River

River

Most river services will operate a regular service, but there will be no crossings on Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

On New Year’s Eve there’ll be a normal timetable on most river services, but none on RB6 and early finishes on RB1 and RB1X.

New Year’s Day will be back to business as usual for most routes, but with no service on the Woolwich Ferry or RB6.

Bike hire

Bike hire

A normal service will run across the Santander Cycles hire network over the festive period – perfect if you fancy a quick spin around the city on Christmas Day

Some central-London docking stations will be suspended from 10am on Saturday December 31 until either Monday 2 or Tuesday January 3.

Plan your NYE celebrations in London

New Year in London

The year's biggest celebration takes serious planning. Relieve the pressue and find the best things to do in the capital this New Year's Eve and New Year's Day

Comments

15 comments
Ian D
Ian D

It's ludicrous that a multicultural city like London has no public transport on Christmas Day. What about all the tourists and those who have to work.

Latif11 M
Latif11 M

can you drive on bus lanes on christmas day

Allan F
Allan F

I am totally gobsmacked!! A city of 12 million people and absolutely no public transport? Shocking that London Transport is allowed to get away with this. What about the thousands of people who have to work and travel on the 25th? Utter disgrace

Marc A
Marc A

@Allan F oh but they need their pay rises and constant strikes to justify it too!

Karl H
Karl H

Your pathetic. Your the disgrace. One day a year without transport and you moan like an old lady.have you ever heard of taxis?

Anyone who arrives at an airport can afford a taxi if they can afford an expensive flight.

London has one of the best transport systems in the world but idiots like you still complain.

KR T
KR T

Dear All,

Does Saturday service schedule mean on 28th, 29th, 30th and 31st DEC also that the OFF peak fares will apply on the tube lines? 

Many thanks!

Wop v
Wop v

Hi.

 Just to make sure. Is the Circle available after midnight on New years eve?

Gi M
Gi M

Hi,

i'll be in London with my family (parents and four siblings, two over eighteen and the other two 13 and 15) from the 23rd to the 30th of December, which underground ticket do you suggest i buy?

Visitor oyster or Travelcard?

(considering that on the 25th there is no service)


Thank you soooo much in advance. :)

Duncan D
Duncan D

Always get an Oyster card regardless. You can put a travel card on that. It's the difference with a daily cap of £6 a day or paying on paper will be £12!! Each oyster is subject to a £5 deposit - but you can get that back at the end of your visit! Really depends how much you intend to travel... :) £2.30 a single within central, but will cap at £6 a day (not sure exact amount in pence).

Luis S
Luis S

Hi. I'm arriving with family at Heathrow on Xmas day. Is there absolutely no public transport of any kind running? How do you get from the airport into town on that day? Any help?

Duncan D
Duncan D

Maybe download the Uber app and set up an account ready - it will work once you get here. And it will give you the chance to at least agree a taxi fare before you book it... Little in the way (I think) if any, of public transport on Xmas day. Enjoy your visit!

Funmi A
Funmi A

Will there be buses on the road as early as  6.00am on boxing day?