Transport for London issues advice to customers returning to the network as restrictions are eased

  • Customers asked to plan ahead and travel during quiet times and walk or cycle where possible
  • Rigorous and enhanced cleaning of trains, buses and stations continues to ensure the network is cleaner than ever, with recent independent tests showing no sign of the virus on the network
  • Dettol hand sanitiser, proven to kill 99.9 per cent of bacteria and viruses including coronavirus (Sars-CoV-2 virus)1, is now available free from more than 1,100 hand sanitiser units on the transport network

Ahead of the lifting of national lockdown on 2 December when London will be placed in tier 2 of the Government’s COVID alert levels, Transport for London (TfL) is issuing guidance for customers who will be returning to the transport network in greater numbers. More customers are expected to return as London’s shops, businesses and hospitality venues reopen and university students travel home ahead of the Christmas period.

The Government advice on travelling within tier 2 makes it clear that customers can travel to venues or amenities that are open, but they should walk or cycle where possible and avoid busy times and routes on public transport.

Extensive measures, brought in by TfL at the start of the pandemic, will continue to provide a clean, safe and reliable network for customers and staff.


TfL is asking customers to plan ahead and travel during the quiet times. These are currently between 08:15 and 16:00 and after 17:30 on weekdays, and before noon and after 18:00 on weekends on public transport. On the roads the quiet times are between 10:00 and 15:00 and after 19:00 on weekdays, and before 10:00 and after 18:00 on weekends.

TfL has also published information about quiet stations and stops at tfl.gov.uk/quiet-times to help people travel through London during the quieter times and help maintain social distancing. The list will be updated regularly as lockdown is lifted and parts of London become busier, particularly around shopping areas.

In line with Government measures, customers in tier 3 areas, such as those just outside of London (Kent and the Medway and Slough) where TfL services run, must ensure they are adhering to tier 3 rules when in tier 2 areas. This means avoiding travel outside of their local areas unless travelling for education or work purposes where work cannot be done from home.

Across London, TfL has been running a full planned service for several months to help ensure there is sufficient space for all those needing to travel around the capital. Tube and rail services through central London run from around 05:00 to after midnight every day, with buses continuing to operate around the clock, supporting customers visiting hospitality venues which will reopen once the restrictions are eased.

Extensive signage is in place on trains, buses, platforms and stations, reminding everyone to remember to socially distance, and TfL’s enforcement staff and its police partners are actively enforcing the national requirement for everyone to wear a face covering over their nose and mouth while in a station or travelling on public transport, unless they are exempt. The vast majority of customers have been complying with this requirement with compliance at around 90 per cent across the network. The police and TfL’s enforcement officers are working hard to ensure that the minority who are not complying are targeted, and if necessary, refused entry to the network and fined.

An enhanced cleaning regime on London’s transport network continues to make the network cleaner than ever. Trains and stations are cleaned with hospital-grade cleaning substances that kill viruses and bacteria on contact and providing ongoing protection. Recent independent testing, carried out by Imperial College London, has found – for the third month in a row – no trace of coronavirus on the Tube and bus network.

TfL has also recently installed more than 150 ultraviolet light sanitising devices on escalators on the London Underground network, following a six-week trial earlier this year. The devices use UV light to clean the handrails on escalators and supplement TfL’s existing extensive anti-viral cleaning regime.

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