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
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
Bar Boulud is located in the basement of the majestic Mandarin Oriental and attracts a diverse mix of families, hotel guests, business people and romancing couples. Overseen by renowned chef Daniel Boulud, the restaurant has an eye-catching view of the open-plan kitchen where chefs work in zen-like calm. Charcuterie from Gilles Verot is a big draw, as are the elegant French brasserie options and finger-licking American staples. We’ve had burgers here and loved every bite – perhaps a beef patty topped with pulled pork and green chilli mayonnaise or a French-US collaboration of beefy burger piled high with pork confit and morbier cheese. On our latest visit, we enjoyed such culinary gems as a robust french onion soup, resplendent with caramelised onions and topped with molten gruyère. A veritable mountain of steamed plump mussels cloaked in garlicky red chilli tomato sauce was another winner – every last saucy drop mopped up with chargrilled bread. The only downer was a lacklustre chocolate sponge layered with chilled coffee buttercream, although its accompanying scoop of coffee ice-cream saved the day. A class performance topped off by seamless service. The cheapest way in here is the 'Bouchon Menu' served daily from noon–7pm: 2 courses for £19 or 3 courses for £21 including coffee.
Venue says: “We have just launched our new menu at the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, based around dishes from the Provence.”