Citymapper's Oyster Card Competitor Has Expanded To Zones 3-4

By Maire Rose Connor Last edited 54 months ago

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Citymapper's Oyster Card Competitor Has Expanded To Zones 3-4
Photo: Citymapper

Back in February, Londoners were introduced to the Citymapper Pass: a shiny new, emerald green travel card that we at Londonist greeted with a healthy dose of scepticism.

After all, didn't Transport for London come up with the same thing all the way back in 2003, when it unveiled the Oyster card? What's more, with contactless bank cards accepted all over the capital's transportation network, what's the point of a travel card, anyway? And finally, could it be profitable?

The key selling point of Citymapper Pass is that it can work out significantly cheaper than Oyster: a £31 weekly Citymapper Pass offers identical benefits to TfL's Zone 1-2 weekly travel card, but costs £4.10 less. With Citymapper footing the bill for the difference in fare, we speculated that the tech startup was betting on users making less than £30 worth of journeys per week in order to turn a profit.

Nine months on, Citymapper's faith in this business model does not appear to have waned, having just launched to cover Zones 3 and 4. A Zone 1-3 pass starts at £37 a week — £4.20 cheaper than TfL's corresponding travel card. The savings on the Zone 1-4 pass are less pronounced, though, with a saving of just £3.50. Time will tell if that is incentive enough to get commuters to make the switch from the ever-ubiquitous Oyster.

Image: Citymapper

Omid Ashtari, President and Head of Business at Citymapper told us he was "excited that thousands of customers are enjoying the benefits" of the Citymapper Pass. While he wasn't able to provide any figures on how much money the scheme is generating, he did say that the pass is "profitable" for the company.

Moving forwards, Ashtari plans to make Citymapper Pass plans to "add more partners and modes to make Pass the most compelling mobility bundle". Having already partnered with Santander Cycles and black cabs for its premium, 'Super Duper Pass' — more on that here — we're intrigued to see what other services could be coming on board.

Last Updated 31 October 2019