London Underground: Best Metro In Europe?

By Lindsey Last edited 109 months ago
London Underground: Best Metro In Europe?

Boris can barely contain a 'yah boo sucks' in his contribution to the press release in which TfL announce London Underground has been named "Best Metro in Europe" at industry awards, The Metros. The Mayor roundly acclaims LU "Champions of Europe" and glee bounces off the page as he sends "commiserations... to the disheartened residents of the cities who trailed behind".

Presumably TfL waited 3 weeks to share this good news in order to cautiously stack up some evidence that LU really deserved to win, to preempt us grumbly, naysaying local users who are routinely stumped by delays, closures, engineering works, faulty escalators, overcrowding (overheating to be looked forward to) and the fact that we can't even sweeten the pill with a spot of home time tippling on the tube any more. So the announcement is laced with additional news of record passenger numbers (necessity of use not a great indicator of quality) and the completely uncontextualised statement that "passenger satisfaction ratings also hit a new high with average scores reaching 79 out of 100." .

As Annie Mole points out, it does look a little suspect that the judges of The Metros are entirely UK based with the event held in London, when its purpose is to celebrate the global mass transit industry. Hmm, hang on - last year's winner was Copenhagen Metro and the awards were held in... Copenhagen. Ah.

London's rivals for the gong were Paris, Madrid, Berlin and aforementioned 08 winner, Copenhagen. Those familiar with these cities' metros please share their inadequacies so we can properly revel in this frankly incredible, in the truest sense, achievement.

Last Updated 28 April 2009


Apart from it not being very extensive, I can think of no inadequacies of Copenhagen's Metro - it's sigh-inducingly lovely. And the Paris Metro always seems to be running smoothly whenever I've been there (they probably even strike less than we do). Mmm. All looks pretty dodge, dunnit?


The doors on the Paris Metro are far more vicious. In London a whole line can grind to a shuddering halt if someone has two square inches of coat shut in the door.
In Paris the door would slam shut on your coat, your handbag, possibly even a small child or dog and still hurtle into the tunnel while issuing a gallic shrug of indifference.


Copenhagen is nice but it's two measly lines that have been built over the last couple of years. It doesn't really face the same challenges as the biggest and oldest underground network in the world htat London is.

Paris is alright but also barely stretches outside of the central Paris.


Not so European but I took an American clinet of mine from St. Pauls to Heathrow via the tube, something he'd never travelled on while in London (he always took the taxi). He was most impressed with the tube system, the staff who helped him with his luggage and using Oystercard (my Oystercard that is). In all he said it was better than the NY system in all aspects, even the cleaniness. So there you go, one up for the London tube from America.

As for the Paris metro, been on it with my video kit and was pressed into one corner with only my camera box to sit on being stared at by most of the other passengers.

london tube hater

the Madrid tube is by far the best one: civilized, clean, + air cond., cheap and always on time. Not to mention that tipplings are allowed :D