Transport Use Largely Unchanged After Work From Home Directive

Tube and bus travel numbers only down slightly


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London commuters have not returned to home working in large numbers despite the risk of local lockdown in the capital – with Tube and bus use yesterday broadly the same as last week.

Last Wednesday (23 September), Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced new national rules to curb the spread of coronavirus in England – including advising everyone to work from home if possible.

London is now on the national Covid-19 watchlist, meaning a new lockdown could be imminent if cases continue to rise.

But there was little change in passenger numbers on the TfL network at peak hours following the Prime Minister’s announcement.

Tube use yesterday morning was just three per cent lower than last Monday, and bus use was down only one per cent.

Public transport in London is still well below pre-pandemic demand: last week, Tube journeys were at just over a third (37 per cent) of normal levels while bus journeys were at 57 per cent compared to the same week last year.

The busiest day last week was Friday, with 3.74 million bus passengers and 1.52 million Tube trips.

And early signs yesterday were of little change – there were more than 730,000 Tube journeys during the morning peak and almost 965,000 bus trips.

Anyone travelling on public transport must wear a face covering unless they are exempt, and passengers should maintain social distancing where possible.

A Transport for London spokesperson said service on the network has been back to normal levels “for some time”.

“The Government advice around using public transport remains unchanged and we continue to ensure that the network is clean, safe and well-managed,” they added.

“To keep everyone safe, customers are asked to follow the latest Government guidance, and to take some simple steps like hand washing or sanitising, wearing a face covering and social distancing wherever possible.”

Jessie Matthewson - Local Democracy Reporter

September 30, 2020