The eagerly anticipated Cross Rail (Elizabeth Line) first opened its doors to the public on May 24th. Here’s what you need to know about phase II of London’s swish new transport route.
The flashy Elizabeth Line has made it way easier to hang out with your friends all over the capital, allowing you to travel in style in the Class345 trains that run through the newly built central tunnels at 12tph. We’re no train buffs but that sounds speedy to us.
And Phase II of the Cross Rail project is officially opening on November 6th, making it even easier to get from A to B (or from east to west).
Want to know what to expect? Read on to discover what phase II of the Elizabeth Line entails…
What was Phase I?
If you missed phase I – where on earth were you earlier this year? It was huge news in London.
Currently, you can board the Cross Rail between Paddington and Abbey Wood – there are around 12 trains per hour in each direction every day. Though, this will change once phase II officially opens.
And, if you haven’t already taken a ride on the Cross Rail, we highly urge you to – air-conditioned and ridiculously clean, it’s the swankiest Tube ride you’ll ever take.
So… Phase II?
Starting on 6th November 2022, phase II will officially open in London.
This means that the Elizabeth Line will combine services from east and west into the new central tunnels – so you can effectively travel from Abbey Wood to Reading via Heathrow and from Shenfield to Paddington with ease. Hurrah! No need to keep swapping lines to travel between different parts of the capital.
The best part? There will be around 22 trains per hour on services between Paddington and Whitechapel, so you should only be waiting a few minutes at most for the next train (unless those dreaded delays strike).
But, that’s not all – there’s still one phase left to go. Phase III will commence in May 2023 and will see up to 24 trains per hour travelling through Paddington and Whitechapel. This is also when services will be running between Shenfield and Heathrow Airport. Keep your eyes peeled for updates closer to the time.
Elizabeth Line Phase II: Practical Information
How Much Does it Cost to Ride?
You’ll be glad to know that Elizabeth line fares mirror normal Tube fares. Any journeys between Zones 1-6 will cost the same as the more traditional route of travel, pre-Elizabeth line.
Can I Use My Oyster Card?
Yes, but only if the station you’re travelling to has always accepted Oyster cards as a form of payment.
It’s best to check before you travel, if you find the station you’re travelling to doesn’t accept Oyster cards then you can easily buy a paper ticket– or save the planet and go contactless.
The Elizabeth Line is also part of TFL’s capping system– we’re very pleased to hear this.