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Welcome to the Underground - Its not what you think


Fast and reliable way In/Out of London

Expensive at peak times

Recommendable Yes:

Detailed rating:

Frequency of trains

Reliability of trains

Comfort of trains

On-board facilities

Speed of trainsFast

Safety of trainsSafe

How extensive is their Rail Network?Very extensive

How well does it cater for disabled people?Satisfactorily

Ticketing SystemExcellent

Value for MoneySatisfactory

38 Ciao members have rated this review on average: very helpful See ratings
exceptional by (14%):
  1. Calla76
  2. Martinscholes
  3. Sarahhhx
and 3 other members
very helpful by (86%):
  1. frankiecesca
  2. KathEv
  3. xxfoxyredxx
and 33 other members

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The overall rating of a review is different from a simple average of all individual ratings.

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Welcome to the Underground – Its not what you think

>> About <<:

My nearest Underground station is in Romford, Essex (Elm Park Station) which is on the green district line. I have travelled on the Underground before simply to avoid the congestion charge, and also to get into the centre of London much more quickly. The Underground is a cheap and fast alternative to using cars, or even buses. I have travelled on the trains since I was an infant, and over the years, it has both got better in some areas, but become more disruptive in terms of delays and repairs.

>> Fees/Prices <<:

Before I explain the value for money, here is a quick list of what they charge:

Zones | Cost | Peak Oyster Fares | Off Peak Oyster Fees |
1 | £4 | £1.80 | £1.80
1-2 | £4 | £2.30 | £1.80
1-3 | £4 | £2.70 | £2.40
1-4 | £4 | £3.10 | £2.40
1-5 | £4.50 | £3.80 | £2.40
1-6 | £4.50 | £4.20 | £2.40
1-7 | £5.50 | £4.70 | £3.40
1-8 | £7 | £6.00 | £3.40
1-9 | £7 | £6.00 | £3.40

I found that a day travel card is the best value for money. I personally think the single tickets are just rubbish value. Take for example, the zones 1-7 ticket up there. It’s a whole £1.30 more for a peak oyster ticket just to get a few more stations out of London.

>> Staff and Helpfulness <<:

When I enquired about where to obtain an Oyster card, the staff there were extremely helpful, they gave me clear directions, and told me more about the card before I bought one. Not only this, but also these guys really do know their way around. You ask them where a station is, and within a second they can find it on the map for you. They will be able to tell you were to interchange between lines, what the best routes are, and of course, what ticket price you will need to pay for your journey. They do all of this with a great attitude to work, and don’t mumble and groan about it.

>> Trains <<:

The trains have comfy seats which are cleaned daily, and have plastic balls coming out of the ceiling, attached to springs for you to hold onto in case you need to stand up. I found that the ride on the trains was very uncomfortable however if you do have to stand. You are violently shaken around and thrown from side to side, and this is especially true on the Piccadilly line. I found that the Dockland Light Railway was most comfortable, and the cleanest out of all of the trains I have been on.

The trains have windows that open in the summer in case you get too hot, and you can move from carriage to carriage through two splitting doors at either end – this is highly dangerous though, and I would not recommend it at all. I have done it myself, and found it particularly scary when the train goes around a bend, as the floor just moves outwards from under you, before completely disappearing under the base of the next plastic mat.

The trains are relatively fast. They tend to stick to 25MPH in Central London I am told, but because they travel in a very direct line, and have no traffic problems, they are much faster than cars and buses.

>> Delays, Jumpers, Track Faults, the stuff that costs you time <<:

One thing the London Underground have done to stop the jumpers, is put up solid metal panels that only open in front of the train door when a new train comes in, and is completely stationary. So yes, they have done something about this, and I praise them fully for trying to fix the problem. (I feel sorry for those who have lost their lives on the Underground, both for suicide and being pushed.)

The Underground is notorious for delays at peak times due to signal failures and track issues. Also because they are always improving stations, you’ll note that often the one you want is sadly closed. There are however, replacement bus services available – where if you still have an in-date ticket you can use it to get a bus ride for free on the same route that the train travels. This is a very good way of them apologising, and at least they are treating the customer with respect after purchasing a ticket from them.

Stations and Security

The stations have shops and stalls in them where you can purchase drinks and snacks. You’ll notice there is a huge litter problem, and unfortunately this is because of the lack of bins on the admission level. The platforms are clean, as someone regularly comes down with a litter picker to clean up, but unfortunately, there is often a huge mess on the tracks also. Crisp packets and newspapers are the most common sight im afraid.

Organisation at stations is key. There are signs telling you exactly where you need to go, and interactive panels which can provide up to date information about train times, delays, and any other information about the Underground that you may need on your journey.

The security is tight. You may often be one of these people who get random bag checked. I myself have been a victim of the checks, and to be honest, im glad I was. People say it is an inconvenience and an invasion of privacy, but really? I feel much safer knowing that these checks are being done, and I honestly don’t mind being late for a train just to have my bag checks. This is just me and my personal consumer opinion, but I honestly think the guys on security are doing a great job. Big up the security staff!!!

I love spending time on the London Underground. It is much safer now than it ever was. I know we had the IRA bombings but I have heard it was the daily norm to have a bomb go off on the trains, and I know 7/7 scared us, but I seriously doubt that we will have something similar to that again, as security has been stepped up.

>> OVERALL <<:

The Underground is fantastic. I think they have put a lot of effort into making a great public transport system. So what’s with the 4 stars? Well, I personally just think the on peak ticket prices are just a little too high. Not to mention the amount of graffiti I have seen on the trains that never gets repaired/reported.

I would recommend this to anyone who is after a quick way to get into/out of London safely and fast. Very good service!

Please rate/comment! –Martin Thanks for the è ratings!


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Comments about this review »

Calla76 15.11.2010 21:25

Super review!

Martinscholes 14.11.2010 22:57

Another E Review. I might be using the tube next month, so this was a great help.

derek-j-a 14.11.2010 16:49

Great review. One of the things I love whenever I visit London it travelling on the underground. I guess Londoners just take it for granted but I always tend to feel an excitement at that way of travel. :-)

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Review Ratings »

This review of London Underground has been rated:

"exceptional" by (14%):

  1. Calla76
  2. Martinscholes
  3. Sarahhhx

and 3 other members

"very helpful" by (86%):

  1. frankiecesca
  2. KathEv
  3. xxfoxyredxx

and 33 other members

The overall rating of a review is different from a simple average of all individual ratings.

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