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After warning for some time that London buses would eventually stop accepting cash payments, Transport for London (TfL) fully implemented the cashless plan earlier this month. From July 5, cash is no longer being accepted as a means of paying for a trip around town. The bus system now accepts only prepaid tickets, contactless payment cards, or Oyster cards.

TfL says it chose to go cashless in order to save money it can reinvest in the London transport system. Perhaps some of that money will go toward reducing the PCV training costs for new bus drivers. Most of it will undoubtedly go to equipment and infrastructure. TfL says it expects the change to save the agency some £24 million annually.

Records indicate that only about 0.7% of London bus passengers paid with cash prior to the changeover. Most of those are local residents rather than tourists. TfL does not expect the cashless system to harm the local economy in any way, especially given how accessible Oyster cards are. However, not everyone agrees.

Critics of the move say there are a number of vulnerable passengers who may not have access to the Oyster card system. They are also concerned a plan to close Oyster ticket shops throughout the tube network will not be adequately addressed by the planned construction of 19 new outlets included as part of the cashless changeover.

There is additional concern about Oyster cards that may be lost, stolen or simply malfunction. The Green Party’s Darren Johnson told the BBC that an average of 2,100 cards experience such problems on any given day. How affected cardholders would make use of bus transportation remains to be seen.

Increasing Ridership

The plan to go cashless is just the latest in a series of moves made by TfL to increase bus ridership while maintaining a system that is both efficient and lean. TfL is doing everything within its power to boost public transport in an effort to reduce traffic congestion in the capital. As their plan slowly moves forward, there may be need for additional buses and drivers.

The HGV Training Centre is here to help by providing new drivers with the training they need to earn their PCV licences. Taking training classes through us offers new drivers the opportunity to receive instruction in a focused and concentrated environment that teaches the student exactly what he or she needs to know in a way that helps them retain the information. Furthermore, the PCV training cost of our programmes is very affordable.

As a UK leader in commercial driver training, the HGV Training Centre can prepare you to drive a bus, coach, articulated lorry, tipper truck, and more. We also provide non-commercial training for individuals desiring to tow a caravan, light trailer, or horsebox trailer.

All of our training is provided by experienced professionals committed to your success. Our trainer will even accompany you to your practical skills test at an approved facility. Call us today for more details.

Sources:

  1. BBC News – https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-london-28177979

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