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London public transport information over Christmas holidays

Christmas and New Year bring changes to transport and opening times in London.
A London Underground sign lit up at night, with Christmas lights shining in the background.
Find out what public transport services are running in the Christmas season. ©visitlondon.com
  • Public transport in London does not run on Christmas Day, and all London attractions are closed.
  • Over the Christmas and New Year period, public transport to and around London is reduced, so plan your journey in advance.
  • Central London is extremely busy on New Year's Eve, and public transport is limited on New Year's Day.

Christmas Day (25 December), Boxing Day (26 December) and New Year’s Day (1 January) are all public holidays (bank holidays) in the UK. 

Christmas transport and travel

Is public transport in London running over Christmas?

Public transport is limited over the Christmas period, so plan your journey in advance. Alternatively, hop on a Santander Cycles bike to explore the capital on two wheels or walk around the city. 

On Christmas Day, public transport in London, including buses, trams, London Underground and London Overground trains, do not operate. A reduced public transport service runs on Boxing Day.

On Christmas Eve, public transport starts to wind down from early evening, and night buses and the Night Tube do not run.

Some taxis are available, but fares increase on Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Check details before travelling and book in advance to avoid extended waits. 

Check the Transport for London (TfL) website before travelling for the latest Christmas travel information.

Do trains to London run on Christmas Day?

Engineering works affect train journeys into and out of London and around the UK over the Christmas and New Year period. 

Few train services run on Boxing Day, except for some airport transfer services.

Take a look at the National Rail website before travelling to check the latest travel information.

London on Christmas Day

Most businesses and attractions close on Christmas Day in London, and many close from 24 to 26 December, as well as on 1 January. Check opening hours before you travel.

There are still plenty of things to do on Christmas Day in London, including seeing top London landmarks on a Christmas Day tour, enjoying a Christmas Day walk in a park, looking at London’s beautiful Christmas lights and cheering on the swimmers racing for the Peter Pan Cup in Hyde Park.

Hotels and restaurants on Christmas Day

Most London hotels are open at Christmas, and some hotel restaurants offer Christmas dining on 25 December. 

Some restaurants, pubs and bars serve Christmas Day meals, but most require advance reservations.

Is the London congestion zone charge free on Christmas Day?

There are no congestion charge payments between Christmas Day and New Year's Day bank holiday.

For more information, please visit the official TfL congestion charge website.

Is it free to park in London on Christmas Day?

Metered or pay-and-display parking is usually free on public holidays, including Christmas Day. Make sure to check for roadside parking signs and machines if you are not sure.

Boxing Day and January sales in London

Shoppers and cars pass Selfridges, covered in twinkling lights for the festive season.

Activity returns to London on Boxing Day (26 December). The January sales start in many London shops, and public transport resumes with a limited service. 

New Year's Eve and New Year's Day in London

Central London is very busy on New Year's Eve

Take a look at the top things to do on New Year’s Eve for ideas on how to celebrate the New Year in London, including information on the New Year's Eve fireworks display.

Last year, there was no free travel on the TfL network on New Year's Eve. However, special services usually run through the night so you can make the most of all the amazing events and activities in London. 

Public transport is limited on New Year’s Day, so check Transport for London’s website for details and make sure you plan your journey in advance over the New Year period.

Visit the National Rail website for information about train services. 

Christmas and New Year events in London

For more things to do around Christmas and New Year’s Eve in London, check out what’s on in London.

Don't forget to also check the London weather for a potential white Christmas! 

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