Following the Government’s recent announcement of a roadmap to ease existing lockdown measures, Transport for London are working to carefully, safely and sustainably re-open London, and gradually build up service levels to where they were before the coronavirus pandemic. Here is the latest travel advice for businesses, and some tips for planning to return to work in the longer term.
In line with Government advice, everyone who can work from home should continue to do so. Public transport should be avoided, wherever possible, to free up the limited space available to those who have no alternative way to travel. If you must travel, please plan ahead, wear a face covering (compulsory from 15 June 2020), keep two metres apart from others where possible and travel outside of the busiest times, particularly first thing in the morning. Please also try to take the most direct route and avoid busy interchanges (listed below). As national restrictions on movement are gradually lifted, businesses are asked to encourage staff and partners to make journeys as safe as possible when there is no alternative other than to use public transport.
The public transport system will need to operate very differently because of the huge reduction in capacity as a result of the national requirement to maintain two metres distance between passengers wherever possible.
Attached is a short briefing from TfL for businesses. TfL has produced a list of the busiest times and places on the Tube and rail network. This list and the busiest times might change over time. TfL is also updating their digital tools such as journey planner, the Facebook TravelBot and the real-time data they provide to third party apps.
Guidance from TfL:
- TfL is taking measures across the network to enable social distancing of 2 metres wherever possible. Please wear a face covering and respect the space of fellow passengers to help maintain this distance. Do not travel if you have any symptoms of the virus.
- You may be asked to wait to enter a station. Some stations will have one-way systems, or you may be asked to walk on the left. You are also asked to maintain social distancing throughout stations, for example on stairs, escalators and in lifts.
- If travelling by bus, please maintain social distancing at stops and bus stations wherever possible. Currently you will also need to board the bus using the middle doors. Please allow other passengers to get on and off while maintaining social distancing.
- When in the bus please use all available space, including the upper deck, if possible, to maintain social distancing.
- Consider walking or cycling
- If you can, please walk or cycle for all or part of your journey, including to complete your journey if travelling into central London. Please consider getting off a stop or two early to reduce the numbers of people travelling on Tubes and buses.
- Congestion Charging: To prevent London’s roads from becoming unusably congested, the Congestion Charge and Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) will be reintroduced on Monday 18 May. These schemes reduce congestion and pollution and help tackle the climate emergency. If your place of work is located inside the Congestion Charging Zone and you are an employee of an NHS Trust, the London Ambulance Service or a care home, please speak to your employer about the NHS reimbursement scheme.
- The Low Emission Zone, which discourages the use of the dirtiest lorries and large vans, will also be reintroduced at the same time.
- TfL is doing everything it can to maintain the cleanliness of the network with regular cleaning using hospital grade antiviral disinfectant.
- It is also important that you continue to follow the Government advice on hygiene. Please wash your hands before and after travel and carry hand sanitiser with you.
- TfL is also putting hand sanitiser dispensers in Tube and bus stations as quickly as possible.
Walking and Cycling
If you have to travel, consider including walking or cycling if you can. TfL have produced the below to help plan your journey.
• Digital cycle map
• Walking tube map journey times
• List of walking steps between stations