Contactless Payments on Buses

Apologies for the distinctly un-thrilling post, but I thought some people on here might want to know that TfL has introduced contactless payment on buses and if you have your Oyster and a contactless debit card close to each other (like me) then the system could reject them both or might charge the wrong one. Great! 🙁 Using contactless payment cards on buses You can now pay for your bus travel using contactless credit, debit or charge cards, as well as cash and Oyster cards. If you have a credit, debit or charge card that has been issued in the UK and displays the contactless payment symbol (pictured on the right), you should be able to use it on buses to pay for single journeys. You just need to touch your card flat on the yellow card reader as you board a bus – exactly the same as when you use an Oyster card. Not all contactless payment cards carry this symbol. Your card issuer should have told you if your card can be used for contactless transactions when it was issued to you. If you keep your contactless payment card and Oyster card together (for instance in a wallet) and touch them on the yellow card reader together, the reader will normally reject them both. This is because we can’t be sure which card you want to use. If you have more than one contactless card (Oyster card, payment card or building pass), please choose the card that you intend to pay with, and touch it on its own on the yellow card reader. If you don’t there is a small possibility that payment will be taken from a card that you did not intend using.


  1. @jamieb aside from accidental payments! This does look pretty handy and I have seen it used. Another thing to be aware of is that there is no cap on daily payments like there is on a prepay oyster card. So it seems like a good backup to use rather than cash when your card runs out or you forget it.

  2. Yes it is dead handy I’m sure (no more getting on a bus and finding you have no oyster credit) but it’s just annoying that they couldn’t figure out a way to prioritise oyster over debit cards!

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