The BBC submitted a Freedom of Information request which shows Transport for London (TfL) has refunded £40,000 this year to customers who have been over-charged for topping up their Oyster Card by faulty machines. The information also shows there have been 2,421 complaints in 2010 about being double charged when adding credit to the electronic travel smartcard, and that the machines at London Bridge, Victoria, Liverpool Street and King Cross stations led to the highest number of complaints.
So don’t take your Oyster charges on trust, check your bank account after topping up, TfL say that they aren’t aware of any over-charging until the issue was reported by a passenger.
As well as checking your bank balance – do you have an old Oyster Card hanging around? A total of 16.5m PAYG cards sat idle during the year from April 2009 to April 2010. The average amount on each card was £1.80, meaning that nearly £30m has been left unused on Oyster pay-as-you-go (PAYG) for at least a year. Additionally last year alone, 31,000 PAYG cards were issued and topped up but never subsequently used, even though they held £246,000 worth of travel on them. That’s a big saving if you can find and use that missing Oyster Card!