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24 September 2014

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Congestion Charge

congestion charge camera
A congestion charge camera

Congestion Charging in London

Your guide to the Congestion Charge including the new western extension zone.


The charge is currently active between 7am and 6.00pm, Monday to Friday, excluding Public Holidays.


The 'boundary' of the zone is formed by the Inner Ring Road, on which there is no charge to drive.

car blur london traffic
Getting things on the move

This comprises: Marylebone Road, Euston Road, Pentonville Road, City Road, Great Eastern Street, Commercial Street, Tower Bridge Road, New Kent Road, Kennington Lane, Vauxhall Bridge Road, Grosvenor Place, Park Lane, Edgware Road.

Now the charge is extended the ring road  stretches to Edith Grove, Redcliff Road Earls Court Road, Warwick Gardens, Addison Road,  Holland Road, West Cross Route, The Grand Union Canal, Eastbourne Terrace, Praed Street and Sussex Gardens.

The Westway will remain free of charge as a through route.

Check this map for a more detailed look.
Western extension map >
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Find out all you need to know about the western extension.
Western extension >


congestion charge arrow on road
Clearly marked roads leading to the zone

All vehicles driving across the £8 charge zone have to pay. However, some vehicles are exempt from the charge (for example, taxis, licenced minicabs, emergency services, blue/orange badge holders, alternative energy vehicles). Others entitled to a discount are mainly residents, but also some vehicle breakdown services as well as selected households living on the zone's border.

Visit the Transport For London discounts and exemptions page here.
Exceptions to the charge >
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The scheme is policed by cameras on roads within the congestion zone which read car registration plates.

Drivers pay £8 per day, by telephone, text message, post, Internet, or in person at a retail outlet. It is also possible to pay up to midnight the day after travel, although the charge is then increased to £10.

Drivers are able to purchase daily, weekly, monthly or annual passes. And there are discounts for buying in advance; monthly pass holders get three days free, yearly pass holders receive 40 days free.

Find out the best way to pay
Congestion Charge Payment >


The congestion charge is aimed at encouraging people to think again about using their vehicles in central London and to choose other forms of transport.

Motorists who still wish to travel in or through central London have to pay the daily charge.

It is not a 'cordon' scheme based solely on cameras at boundary points. Any vehicle moving within the zone, whether or not crossing boundary, will be monitored by cameras throughout the zone.


Before the scheme was introduced in 2003 the average speed of traffic moving through central London had fallen to below three miles per hour. TFL claim traffic flow has now increased to just below ten miles per hour.

bus london congestion charge
More London buses, faster moving traffic

As well as helping traffic flow the congestion charge also aims to improve the bus network, and make central London a more pleasant location for residents, visitors and businesses.

last updated: 01/07/08
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