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Last Updated: Tuesday, 19 August, 2003, 13:42 GMT 14:42 UK
Tube fares to rise
London Underground ticket barriers
The fare hikes are designed to cut queues
Tube fares in central London will rise by 25% from January, the Mayor of London has announced.

A single ticket in zone 1 will increase from 1.60 to 2 and bus fares in the outer zones will go up from 70p to 1 for those paying with cash.

But passengers using the Oyster smartcard, which has a pre-pay facility, will be able to travel at 2003 prices.

Ken Livingstone said the new fares were designed to cut queues at Tube stations and speed up buses by encouraging people to use pre-paid tickets.

The mayor has already revealed a 64m shortfall in his transport budget caused by lower than expected revenues from the congestion charge scheme.

Oyster Card
The Tube fare increases include: A zone 1- 2 single rising to 10% from 2 to 2.20
A zone 1-4 weekly travelcard rising by 3.2% from 28.40 to 29.30
A zone 1 weekly travelcard increasing by 12.1% from 16.15 to 18.15
A book of 10 Carnet Tube tickets increasing 30.4% from 11.50 to 15
"The new four-year fare package will encourage people to switch to pre-paid tickets like the Oyster smartcard and Bus Saver tickets," said Mr Livingstone.

"London's transport network continues to improve, the most obvious example being the massive improvement of our bus network, but this comes at a cost that has to be met so we can keep the improvements coming."

Customers using the Oyster cards will be able to top them up over the phone, the internet or at ticket offices and machines.

It is hoped that within three years, paying for public transport in London will become a virtually cashless system.

Mr Livingstone also announced that children under 11 will travel for free on all London buses from next year.

The new fares will be introduced on 4 January 2004 and any further annual increases will be pegged to no more than the rate of inflation.

BBC London Christine Phillips
"Bus prices in outer London have gone up despite the mayor promising to keep them down"

Mayor of London Ken Livingstone
"Despite the price increases we still have the cheapest bus fares in Europe and America"

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