London congestion charge consultation opens

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90% residents discount for a van driver living in the zone.

TfL have asked IOC fellows and members for their views on proposed changes to the Congestion Charge.

The new proposals are part of the commitment by the Mayor of London and TfL to reduce traffic and congestion in central London.

Van drivers who are resident in the zone will get 90% reduction, hours changed will benefit shift workers and leave sortation teams free to get to depot. What are your views?



The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said:

The Government insisted on the widening of the level and scope of the Congestion Charge last year as a condition of TfL’s emergency funding agreement – which was only needed because of the pandemic. As we look to the future it’s vital the charge strikes the right balance between supporting London’s economic recovery and helping ensure it is a green and sustainable one. These proposals support the capital’s culture, hospitality and night-time businesses which have struggled so much, as well as encouraging people to walk, cycle and use public transport. We must not replace one public health crisis with another due to filthy polluted air, and our measures to create more space for walking and cycling have already had a huge impact. I urge Londoners to have their say and take part in the consultation.


The proposed changes are:

-£15 charge level
-No Auto Pay or Fleet Auto Pay discount
-£17.50 pay-next-day charge, and can be paid up to three days after travel
-The charging hours would be Monday to Friday from 07:00 – 18:00 and Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays from 12:00 – 18:00
-No charge from Christmas Day to New Year’s Day bank holiday (inclusive)
-90 per cent residents’ discount, re-opened to new applicants
-Reimbursement arrangements for certain NHS patients, care home workers, local authority and charity workers or volunteers providing certain services during epidemics or pandemics prevalent in Greater London. The expanded NHS staff reimbursement is also proposed to continue.

The consultation closes on Wednesday 6 October 2021. To respond, visit :

Transport for London (TfL) is this week (28 July) opening a consultation and seeking views on the future operation of the Congestion Charge. The main proposals include no charges in the evenings to support London’s recovery, removing current charging hours in the evenings, operating between 1200-1800 on weekends and retaining the current charge level of £15.

High levels of traffic make deliveries less reliable, delay bus journeys, worsen air pollution and make it less safe for people walking and cycling. Congestion is also damaging to the economy - in 2017, drivers in London spent an average of 71 hours in gridlock during peak hours, contributing to congestion costing London £9.5 billion in 2017*. The Mayor’s target is for 80 per cent of trips made in the capital in 2041 to be by walking, cycling or public transport, and the target for central London is 95 per cent of trips to be made by these types of travel.

The proposed new weekend charging hours are targeted at reducing congestion at the busiest times. Weekend car and private hire traffic before the pandemic was higher than during the week and made up 70 per cent of traffic in the charging zone on a Saturday and Sunday. If the proposed new weekend hours are brought in, it is estimated there will be an increase in sustainable travel compared to before the pandemic, with around 8,000 new public transport trips and 3,000 walking and cycling trips each day on the weekend.

To boost London’s culture, hospitality and night-time businesses, as well supporting shift workers who perform essential roles in the central London economy, the plans include the charge stopping at 1800 on weekdays. This is in line with the pre-pandemic hours, rather than the current 2200 finish time. Evening traffic data will be kept under review, given that weekday travel patterns in particular remain uncertain.

Following feedback from those living in central London the plans include opening up the 90 per cent residents’ discount to new applicants. The discount has been closed to new applicants since 1 August 2020.

Other proposals include:

- No charge between Christmas Day and New Year’s Day inclusive
- The charge to be in operation on bank holidays from 1200-1800
- Being able to pay up to three days after travel

Alex Williams, TfL’s Director of City Planning, said:

These proposals are aimed at ensuring that travel in and around the heart of the city is sustainable in the long term. We know that the charge plays a vital role in helping the logistics industry reach its customers on time and in encouraging people to walk, cycle and take public transport. After listening to industry bodies, the plans include the charge only being in place during the day. This is a balanced package of measures and I would encourage people to have their say in the consultation.

Notes on the detail

. TfL’s Freight Strategy (page 34):

. It is proposed that the discount for using AutoPay will be removed, after high take-up of the option. Customers will continue to benefit from the convenience of the automatic payment

. The proposals plan to retain the current £17.50 charge for paying in the three days after travel.

. Residents’ ability to pay for consecutive days online and via the app will be removed, following the successful widespread take-up of AutoPay.

. Other discounts and exemptions, including the Blue Badge Discount and Cleaner Vehicle Discount, are unaffected by the new proposals

. If these proposals are taken forward following the consultation, the changes to hours will take place on 28th February 2022, giving time for signage to be updated. Other proposals will be implemented immediately after a mayoral decision on the changes.

. The consultation closes on Wednesday 6 October 2021. To respond, visit :

. The following table lays out the proposed changes, alongside the pre-pandemic scheme and the temporary changes made in response to the pandemic