You can use contactless credit and debit cards and mobile payment devices such as Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay to pay for your travel across the Transport for London (TfL) network, as well as TfL’s own Oyster cards.
But while most passengers are aware you need to use the same Oyster or contactless card to tap in and out at the beginning and end of tube, overground, DLR and TfL Rail journeys, a lesser-known rule means you also need to use the same device – not just the same card.
So if you have a contactless card which is also registered to a mobile or smart watch (for example, if you use Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay or others), don’t assume you can use either the card or your mobile phone/smart watch to tap in and out. If you use different devices – even if it’s the same card – you could be charged two maximum fares.
One MoneySaver, Grace Savage, recently discovered she’d ran up a whopping £707 in overpayments after travelling for a year while being unaware of the rules. She’s now managed to get a refund, but this is far from guaranteed – see Grace’s full story below.
For more help on how to get money back if you’ve overpaid for London travel, see our Oyster card refunds guide.