On 20 April buses in London temporarily became middle-door only boarding as part of Transport for London’s efforts to help combat coronavirus.
Middle-door boarding was brought in as a temporary measure to protect bus drivers, as card readers are usually located at the front door adjacent to where the driver sits. This meant customers were not required to touch in when making a bus journey. TfL have since worked to return card readers located by the middle doors of New Routemasters and introduced a wide range of safety measures.
From 23 May, Transport for London will begin the phased re-introduction of the requirement for passengers to touch in on London’s buses. There will be announcements and signage in place on bus doors to let customers know they need to touch in.
Customers who use buses on 85 routes which are served by single-door and New Routemaster buses will be required to touch in using their Oyster, Contactless or concessionary card on the reader as they board. This is the first step towards returning all of London’s buses to being able to accept payments once further safety measures have been introduced to protect bus drivers. The routes are provided below.
Single door bus routes: 124, 138, 146, 162, 192, 233, 273, 315, 318, 322, 336, 352, 354, 356, 367, 377, 379, 383, 385, 394, 404, 424, 434, 462, 463, 464, 481, 631, B13, B14, E5, E10, E11, G1, H2, H3, H20, H26, K1, K4, K5, R1, R3, R4, R5, R6, R7, R8, R10, S3, S4, U9, W4, W5 and W12
The first New Routemaster bus routes where passengers should touch in at the middle door: 3, 9, 11, 12, 15, 19, 21, 24, 27, 38, 59, 67, 68, 73, 76, 87, 137, 148, 149, 159, 211, 253, 254, 415, 453, EL1, EL2 and EL3
Single-decker routes 507 and 521 will also return to taking contactless and Oyster payments but will continue to use middle door boarding.
Visit our COVID-19 Resource Centre for more information on getting around during the pandemic.