Stations & on train

 

London Travel Advice

Make sure you plan before you set off by checking each train operator’s guidance on best times to travel and routes to avoid so you can travel safely. You will also need to bring a face covering with you to wear throughout your journey, as it is now compulsory. To find out if you are exempt, see our Face Covering Exemptions page

The health and wellbeing of our customers and staff are our top priority which is why we are working closely with train companies and the government to take the steps needed to keep train running while keeping you safe.

Train Operator's Guidance

Make sure you check train operator’s guidance below when travelling in and around London.

This information will be updated regularly as guidance changes.

Avanti West Coast

 

When is best to travel and how do I avoid busy periods?

Currently, our busiest times are between 9.30am and 1pm, and 4pm and 6pm. When you book on the Avanti West Coast website, we have highlighted busier trains for you to see when you’re booking tickets.  You can also view busy trends here. Please take this into account and choose a quieter service where possible. Once a train reaches the allocated social distance seat capacity, we remove it from our booking platforms.

We advise that you keep checking back for any changes.

More Information:

More coronavirus travel information from the Avanti West Coast website.

c2c

 

Best times to travel with us:

  • Towards London after 08:30
  • Out of London before 15:00

Busy stations, services or interchanges:

Stations

It is advised that you avoid West Ham station before 08:30.

It is advised that you avoid Barking station before 08:30.

It is advised that you avoid London Fenchurch Street station before 08:00.

Services

The busiest trains into London are:

  • 05:13 Shoeburyness to London Fenchurch Street via Laindon
  • 06:15 Grays to London Fenchurch Street via Ockendon
  • 05:08 Thorpe Bay to London Fenchurch Street via Ockendon
  • 05:53 Grays to London Fenchurch Street via Rainham
  • 05:34 Shoeburyness to London Fenchurch Street via Rainham
  • 05:48 Pitsea to London Fenchurch Street via Rainham
  • 07:17 Grays to London Fenchurch Street via Ockendon
  • 05:28 Shoeburyness to London Fenchurch Street via Laindon
  • 04:15 Shoeburyness to London Fenchurch Street  via Laindon 
  • 04:59 Shoeburyness to London Fenchurch Street via Laindon

The busiest trains out of London are:

  • 06:29 from London Fenchurch Street to Grays 
  • 18:55 from London Fenchurch Street to Pitsea via Rainham
  • 17:01 from London Fenchurch Street to Shoeburyness via Laindon
  • 16:45 from London Fenchurch Street to Shoeburyness via Laindon
  • 16:31 from London Fenchurch Street to Shoeburyness via Laindon

Alternative Travel Modes:

Please avoid neighbouring Jubilee; District and Hammersmith & City Line services before 08:30.

More Information:

More coronavirus travel information is available from the c2c website

Chiltern Railways

 

Best times to travel:

Travel outside of peak hours where you can. The busiest times will vary by route.

We are carefully monitoring all trains and stations for increased passenger numbers. We are adding alerts to journey planners on trains where we believe social distancing on board may be difficult.

As you can expect, trains get busier as they get closer to London or Birmingham in the morning and may be busy leaving London or Birmingham in the evening.

If stations become exceptionally busy, staff may restrict access and introduce queueing systems. At any stations where crowding has been reported, we will list this information on National Rail Enquiries, the service updates page of our website and on live departure boards for that station. We monitor our alerting tools daily and will keep updating the detail on this page

Busy stations , services and interchanges:

We know that trains scheduled to arrive into London between 06:30 - 07:30 are slightly busier than others. We will add alerts to journey planners if individual services get particularly busy.

More Information:

More coronavirus travel information is available from the Chiltern Railways website

East Midlands Railway

 

Best times to travel with us:

Travel outside of peak hours when you can. Our busiest times vary by route but generally the quietest times of the day are mid morning to early afternoon (10:00-13:00) and in the evening (after 19:00).

We will regularly update our "seat finder" so customers may check expected loads in advance of travel, on the day any trains reported above social distancing capacity will be flagged as a service message.

Busy stations, services or interchanges:

Our busiest services in to London St. Pancras are the 04:37 from Derby, 04:52 from Leicester and 05:23 from Sheffield. The busiest services from London St Pancras are the  09:30 to Sheffield and 15:05, 16:05 and 17:05 to Nottingham.

More information:

More coronavirus travel information from the East Midlands Railway site.

Great Northern

 

Best times to travel with us:

Travel outside of peak hours where you can. Our busiest times vary by route.

We are carefully monitoring all trains and stations for increased passenger numbers. We are adding alerts to journey planners on trains where we believe social distancing on board may be difficult.

As you can expect, trains get busier as they get closer to London in the morning. And are busy leaving London in the evening.

If stations become exceptionally busy, we may restrict access and introduce queueing systems. At any stations where crowding has been reported, we will list this information on National Rail Enquiries, the service updates page of our website and on live departure boards for that station.

We monitor our alerting tools daily and will keep updating the detail on this page.

Busy stations, services or interchanges:

  • Finsbury Park is busiest between 07:30 and 08:30
  • New services have been added between Hertford North and London to support social distancing. Please check ahead using a journey planner

More Information:

More coronavirus travel information from the Great Northern site.

Great Western Railway

 

Best times to travel with us:

Generally, our stopping services between Reading and London Paddington have space on them to maintain social distancing throughout the day.

At the weekend services are usually quieter earlier in the morning.

Busy stations, services or interchanges:

Monday - Friday

Fast services between London Paddington and Reading are busiest on Fridays 15:00-17:00 and 19:00-20:00

Saturday and Sunday

The following branch lines are busier in the afternoons so travel earlier if you can:

  • Slough to Windsor & Eton Central
  • Maidenhead to Marlow
  • Twyford to Henley-on-Thames
  • West Ealing to Greenford.

 

More information:

More coronavirus travel information from the Great Western Railway website.

Greater Anglia

 

Best times to travel with us:

Travel to London to arrive after 09.00 where you can and try to avoid leaving London between 16:30 and 18:30.

Busy stations, services or interchanges:

Stratford and Tottenham Hale stations are particularly busy before 09:00 and between 16:30 and 18:30 - please avoid them if you can.
The busiest trains are those arriving into London Liverpool Street before 07:30, particularly on the Hertford East to London Liverpool Street via Tottenham Hale line.

The busiest trains are:
  • 05:00 Norwich to London Liverpool Street
  • 05:45 Southend Victoria to London Liverpool Street
  • 05:28 Clacton to London Liverpool Street
  • 06:09, 06:39 and 07:09 Hertford East to London Liverpool Street
While evening peak loads are more spread out, we are continually monitoring services for crowding.

More information:

More coronavirus travel information from the Greater Anglia site and to find less busy Greater Anglia trains, click here.

London Northwestern Railway

 

Best times to travel with us:

Travel outside of peak hours where you can. Our busiest times vary by route.

We are carefully monitoring all trains for increased passenger numbers. We are adding alerts to journey planners on trains where we believe social distancing may be difficult.

Busy stations, services or interchanges:

The busiest trains into London Euston are the:

05:38 Bletchley to London Euston (which arrives into London at 06:40)

05:38 Coventry to London Euston (which arrives into London at 07:22)

More information:

More coronavirus travel information from the London Northwestern Railway site

South Western Railway

 

Best times to travel with us:

Arriving into London after 08:30 and departing London before 15:00 or after 18:30

Busy stations, services or interchanges:

It is advised that you avoid London Waterloo, Clapham Junction, Vauxhall and Wimbledon station before 08:30


The busiest trains into London are:


05:28 Guildford to London Waterloo arrives at 06:43
05:42 Reading to London Waterloo arrive at 07:05
06:03 Woking to London Waterloo arrives at 06:53
06:16 Dorking to London Waterloo arrives at 07:13
06:23 Hampton Court to London Waterloo arrives at 07:01
06:28 Guildford to London Waterloo arrives at 07:43
06:29 Kingston to London Waterloo arrives at 07:16
06:48 Hounslow to London Waterloo 07:32
07:08 Chessington South to London Waterloo arrives at 07:46
07:29 Kingston to London Waterloo arrives at 08:16


The busiest trains departing London are:

16:12 London Waterloo to Shepperton arrives at 17:42
16:20 London Waterloo to Woking arrives at 17:08
16:24 London Waterloo to Alton arrives at 17:40
16:33 London Waterloo to Guildford arrives at 17:32
16:57 London Waterloo to Kingston arrives at 17:29
17:09 London Waterloo to Dorking arrives at 17:59
17:15 London Waterloo to Hounslow arrives at 18:02
17:27 London Waterloo to Kingston arrives at 17:59
17:39 London Waterloo to Guildford arrives at 18:47
17:45 London Waterloo to Hounslow arrives at 18:31
17:57 London Waterloo to Kingston arrives at 18:29
18:02 London Waterloo to Aldershot arrives at 19:04
18:09 London Waterloo to Dorking arrives at 18:59
18:27 London Waterloo to Kingston arrives at 18:59
18:39 London Waterloo to Guildford arrives at 19:47

The services below are also likely to be busy over the weekend, particularly between Southampton and Bournemouth. Southampton Central and Bournemouth stations are also likely to be busy over the weekend:


06:30 London Waterloo to Bournemouth arrives at 08:46
08:00 London Waterloo to Bournemouth arrives at 10:02
08:35 London Waterloo to Southampton Central arrives at 10:16
09:00 London Waterloo to Bournemouth arrives at 11:02
16:22 Bournemouth to London Waterloo arrive at 18:22
17:22 Bournemouth to London Waterloo arrive at 19:22
18:22 Bournemouth to London Waterloo arrive at 20:22


More information:

More coronavirus travel information from the South Western Railway site

Southeastern

 

Best times to travel with us:

Currently our busiest trains are those arriving into London on weekdays between 06:00 and 08:00, and departing London on weekdays between 16:00 and 18:00. In order to aid with social distancing on these trains please look to undertake your journey outside these times if that is possible. This includes our High Speed services into and out of London St Pancras International.

Busy stations, services or interchanges:

The following stations are generally the busiest and we suggest that you avoid travelling through these stations between the above times, if you can:

  • London Bridge
  • London Victoria
  • London Charing Cross
  • Waterloo East
  • Lewisham
  • London Cannon Street
  • Bromley South
  • St Pancras International
  • Woolwich Arsenal
  • Dartford

A number of our stations have one-way systems in place - please take note of signage and obey instructions from station staff.

We are undertaking active monitoring of our services and stations in order to tell our passengers where social distancing is more difficult to achieve. Please check journey planners and departure boards for latest information on specific trains.

If you interchange between Southeastern to TfL or DLR please be aware that there may be additional arrangements in place at these interchanges to control passenger numbers.

Please listen to station staff announcements at our stations, and take heed of on-board announcements on our train services, as they may be passing on information on quieter parts of the train to board or relocate to.

More information:

More coronavirus travel information from the Southeastern site

Southern

 

Best times to travel with us:

Travel outside of peak hours where you can. Our busiest times vary by route.

We are carefully monitoring all trains and stations for increased passenger numbers. We are adding alerts to journey planners on trains where we believe social distancing on board may be difficult.

As you can expect, trains get busier as they get closer to London in the morning. And are busy leaving London in the evening.

If stations become exceptionally busy, we may restrict access and introduce queueing systems. We monitor our alerting tools daily and will keep updating the details on this page.

Busy stations, services or interchanges:

  • East Croydon station gets busy between 06:00 and 07:00.
  • Trains between East Croydon and London are busy between 06:00 and 08:00.
  • Trains between Sutton and London Victoria via both Selhurst and Mitcham Junction are busy between 05:30 and 08:30. We’ve added extra trains and increased the number of coaches on trains on these routes where we can.
  • Trains leaving London Victoria and London Bridge are busiest between 16:00 and 19:00.
  • When the weather is warm, particularly at weekends; trains from London Victoria to the coast are the busiest from 09:00 through to 12:00, with busy trains back to London from 16:00 through to 19:00.

More Information:

More coronavirus travel information from the Southern site

Stansted Express

 

Best times to travel with us:

Travel outside peak times if you can.

Busy stations, services or interchanges:

While there are no airport services with heavy loadings yet, we are keeping a close eye on this.

Please avoid travelling in the peak where possible.

Please avoid interchanging at Tottenham Hale between 06:30 and 08:30 and between 16:30 and 18:30.

More information:

More coronavirus travel information from the Stansted Express site. To find less busy Stansted Express trains, see the Greater Anglia website.

Thameslink

 

Best times to travel with us:

Travel outside of peak hours where you can. Our busiest times vary by route.

We are carefully monitoring all trains and stations for increased passenger numbers. We are adding alerts to journey planners on trains where we believe social distancing on board may be difficult.

As you can expect, trains get busier as they get closer to London in the morning - and are busy leaving London in the evening.

If stations become exceptionally busy, we may restrict access and introduce queueing systems.

We monitor our alerting tools daily and will keep updating the detail on this page.

Busy stations, services or interchanges:

  • East Croydon station gets busy between 06:00 and 07:00
  • Trains between East Croydon and London are busy between 06:00 and 08:00
  • Finsbury Park is busiest between 07:30 and 08:30
  • Trains between Rainham and London Bridge that arrive in London between 07:00 and 08:00 get busy during the journey
  • Trains between Sevenoaks and Blackfriars that arrive in London between 06:45 and 08:00 get busy during the journey
  • Trains between Blackfriars and Sevenoaks that leave London between 16:45 and 18:00 are busy
  • When the weather is warm, particularly at weekends; trains from Blackfriars and London Bridge to Brighton are busiest from 09:00 through to 12:00, with busy trains back to London from 16:00 through to 19:00.

Busy stations, services or interchanges:

More coronavirus travel information from the Thameslink site.

TfL - London Buses, Docklands Light Railway, London Overground, London Underground, TfL Rail and Tramlink

 

The quiet times to travel on TfL services between 08:15 and 16:00 and after 17:30 on weekdays, and before 12:00 and after 18:00 on weekends.

You can check how busy any station on the TfL network is, at any time of the day.

If you are travelling outside the quiet times, check the busiest stations and routes.

If you're travelling in to London via a mainline station, consider using walking and cycling routes to get to your final destination during the busiest times.

There is currently no Night Tube or Night Overground and there are limited Night Buses, so please plan your journey ahead of time if travelling late.

Last updated:   13 July 2020