Out of Station Interchange (OSI)

This is an old page. The current version can be found here. The current OSI List is here.

The Oyster system charges a price for each journey made.  In the case of National Rail, Underground, Overground and DLR each journey is allowed to include more than one mode as long as the gap between sections is reasonable.  Sometimes you can change between modes without touching out and in (eg between National Rail and DLR at Greenwich), but usually it is necessary.  The system is programmed with a number of such interchanges.  The time allowed varies dependant on the distance involved and the frequency of trains on the next leg.  Thus an Underground to National Rail OSI will often allow more time than the opposite National Rail to Underground OSI, particularly if passengers usually wait on a concourse until their train is advertised.

Unfortunately this is one of the hidden caveats that TfL seem reluctant to publish.  The reason given is that the list and timings are under constant review as circumstances change.  The table has been removed as it is now out of date.

Emergency OSIs

The Oyster Control Centre has the ability to set and remove emergency OSIs in real time according to locally made requests.  These will typically cater for short term (un)planned station closures and some weekend engineering work.  An EOSI will be set at a number of stations and will allow interchange between any of those stations within 30 minutes, including re-entering the same station.  These EOSIs are not included in the table because of their extremely fluid nature.

Change introduced in May 2013 List

  1. OSI between Kings Cross St Pancras and St Pancras Intl NR increased to 30 minutes.

Changes introduced in October 2012 List

  1. New OSI between Ickenham and West Ruislip.
  2. New OSIs between gatelines at Richmond and Woodford.
  3. Deleted OSI between seperate parts of Wembley Central.
  4. OSI between Kings Cross St Pancras and Kings Cross NR increased to 40 minutes.

 Changes introduced in January 2012 List

  1. New OSI between Aldgate LU and Tower Gateway DLR.
  2. New OSI between Edgware Road LU stations.
  3. New OSIs between gatelines at Farringdon and Oxford Circus.

 Changes introduced in May 2011 List

  1. New OSI between Cannon Street NR and Bank LU.
  2. New OSI between Finsbury Park LU and NR.
  3. New OSI between Putney NR and East Putney LU.
  4. Temporary OSI between Goodge Street, Leicester Square and Tottenham Court Road.

Change introduced in November 2010 List

  1. New OSI between Cannon Street NR and Mansion House LU.

Changes introduced in September 2010 List

  1. Addition of a new entrance to Canary Wharf Tube called E2.
  2. New OSI between different gatelines at Paddington LU.

Changes introduced in October 2010 ATOC List

These changes have been ignored because they were not borne out in the TfL list.

  1. New OSIs between Bank and Cannon Street, Mansion House.
  2. OSI between Kings Cross/St Pancras and Kings Cross NR increased to 40 minutes.
  3. OSI between Mansion House/Temple and Blackfriars NR reduced to 20 minutes.
  4. OSIs between Paddington gatelines and P8/9 PVALs reduced to 20 minutes.
  5. OSI between Southwark and Waterloo East increased to 40 minutes.
  6. OSI between St Pancras NR and Kings Cross NR increased to 40 minutes.
  7. OSI between Waterloo East and Southwark increased to 20 minutes.

226 Responses

  1. Hi Alison,

    You need to touch the pink reader on the Overground platform at Stratford or you will be charged as if you have gone via zone 1.

    Sadly buses are not included with single rail journeys. They have their own cap which means you pay nothing after the 4th bus of the day. If you have a travelcard then all bus travel is included.

  2. Sadly my OSI suggestions were rejected. Here’s TfL response in full:

    Dear Mr Rose

    I refer to my email of 28 March about out of station interchanges (OSIs), as I have now heard back from our fares people.

    I regret to advise you that despite your comments there are currently no plans to introduce any new OSIs to our Oyster system.

    OSIs are very carefully allocated to the interchanges that will offer benefit to the most Oyster users. In general, the agreement between us the National Rail Train Operating Companies, on the implementation of OSIs, is that they exist where the average walking time between the relevant stations is no longer than about ten minutes. In the majority of cases, the actual walking time between sides is no longer than five minutes. Longer interchanges or ones that are circuitous or would require specialised knowledge of the area of seemingly remote stations are not normally included.

    In some exceptional cases, OSIs have been introduced where the average walking time between stations is higher than ten minutes. This has happened where the geography of the railway and pattern of service is such that certain journeys would become untenable without an OSI (examples of these are the OSIs between Ickenham and West Ruislip and between Bromley North and Bromley South).

    In the specific case of journeys made via the London Overground to the western ends of the Piccadilly and District lines, there are reasonable interchanges at Gunnersbury (and Turnham Green) or West Brompton (and Earl’s Court). An OSI between South Acton and Acton Town stations could lead to customers unexpectedly encountering a long walk in the middle of their journey and has, therefore, not been implemented.

    Regarding the provision of OSIs in the Shepherd’s Bush area, these currently exist between White City and Wood Lane and between the London Underground and London Overground stations at Shepherd’s Bush. There are no plans to offer other interchanges. We have found the operation of OSIs which have an ‘attraction’ (in this case the Westfield Shopping Centre) between their sides particularly problematic as regards customer perception of what is a reasonable ‘interchange’ time. There is a fine line between making an interchange between two services and making two separate journeys with a visit to an attraction in between. Defining separate journeys in such cases is difficult for an automated system to do and, of course, joining separate journeys together can lead to the overall journey time exceeding (Maximum Journey Time) time limits imposed in the system.

    I’m sorry I cannot provide the reply you were seeking on this occasion.

  3. Hi Dan,

    Thanks for that. I have to say that I agree about the problem of putting an OSI through somewehere like Westfield. I see no reason to reject the Acton one though, so that is disappointing. On the diagramatic tube map the interchanges at Gunnersbury and Turnham Green seem very reasonable, but when you look at the geographic locations I can see how it could sometimes be quicker to walk.

  4. Hi Mike, I am doing a journey very soon. & I’m wondering if you can do two osi’s in one journey? Thank you in advance Mike.

  5. Hi Joe,

    You can do as many as you like. Just remember that the maximum journey time still applies even if you take time to walk between stations, and if you go a roundabout route the MJT at the end is what the system expects for that journey, not the route you actually took.

  6. Hi Mike, is there an OSI between Leyton St. & Leyton Midland Road St.

  7. Hi Mark,

    No there isn’t. The stations are too far apart compared to Leytonstone and Leytonstone High Road, which provides the same opportunities.

  8. Hello Mike, have you ever asked why there is no OSI between Liverpool Street NR and Moorgate LU?

  9. Hi Martin,

    Why would you want one? Liverpool Street and Moorgate are both on the Circle, Ham&City and Met lines. They don’t generally provide OSIs where an Underground line does the same job. Cannon Street NR to Bank is one exception because the Circle and District lines go to Monument which is then a walk through to the Central line at Bank which is as far as you have to walk down Wallbrook.

    However, things may change in the future when the Crossrail station opens linking the two Underground stations together.

  10. Because it is easier to walk to Moorgate to take the Northern line than changing at either Bank or, particulalry, Moorgate – where there are multiple staircases up and down between lines.

  11. Ah, I see. I think this comes under the problem of how complicated can they make the interchange network without inadvertantly causing people to be overcharged for making circular journeys.

  12. Hi Mike,

    Today I travelled from clapham junction to canary wharf. CJ to Canada water on NR and changing onto jubilee line. I thought I had touched out at Canada water but when I saw my fare of 1.60 at canary wharf I have a feeling I’ll have a penalty fare coming my way? What’s the correct fare for this route and where do I touch in/out at Canada water as platforms I exit onto and jubilee line are just a short escalator journey away from each other? I asked that question to the ticket office at canary wharf but I got a look like I was speaking another language?


  13. Hi Damian,

    Don’t worry, £1.60 is the peak fare for that journey as it is all in zone 2. You need to touch the pink validator at Canada Water on the Overground platforms near the escalator down to the Jubilee line. It sounds like you must have done that or you would have been charged £2.80 for going through zone 1.

  14. I would like to go to Brixton from Hanger Lane station, but how can I avoid Zone 1 or from Park Royal to Brixton without going through Zone 1.

  15. Hi Richard,

    According to the single fare finder it’s possible from both. Hanger Lane – Shepherds Bush – Clapham Junction – Vauxhall – Brixton; or Park Royal – Earls Court – West Brompton – Clapham Junction – Vauxhall – Brixton. In the latter case you must touch the pink reader at West Brompton.

  16. I am presuming that from today whilst the escalator works mean no entry to the Bakerloo line at Paddington that there will be a temporary OSI set up between Paddington LU / NR gate lines and Edgware Road Bakerloo Line as that is one of the advisory alternatives.
    I cannot find any information on the time allowed for this transfer, the alternative would be to change to the Bakerloo Line at Baker Street.

  17. Hi Malcolm,

    I haven’t heard any info, but then I wasn’t aware it was happening until I got the email this morning from TfL. There may be an EOSI set up, or a temporary OSI. I’ll try and find out from some contacts. In the meantime, there is an OSI between the two Edgware Road stations, and as you point out people can change at Baker Street as well.

  18. Thanks for that Mike

  19. I walked Paddington NR -> Edgware Road Bakerloo on Saturday as the sign suggested and was charged two journeys..

  20. Hi Ralph,

    I suspected that might happen. Please complain to the helpdesk and let us know what they say.

  21. Hi Mike,
    What’s the cheapest way to travel from Leyton to Southwark Mon – Fri for a 9-5 job? Is there a way of avoiding the zone 1- 3 travelcard? I already have a 16-25 railcard added onto my oysters but don’t know if it affect the cost

  22. Hi Elizabeth,

    The railcard only affects off-peak fares and caps so it won’t help with a normal commute. If you only use your Oyster for 10 single journeys a week then in your case a weekly travelcard is overkill and a monthly or longer just about breaks even. If you make other journeys then a travelcard really is your best bet.

  23. Hiya, I’m thinking about staying in a hostel near Willesden Green and need to commute to Camden Town… what would be the best way time and cost-wise for me to do this? I’ve not really used an Oyster card much before so it’s all a bit confusing!!

  24. Hi Daisy,

    Willesden Green to West Hampstead on the Jubilee line then West Hampstead to Camden Road on the Overground. The whole journey is in zone 2 so it will only cost £1.60 each way. Camden Road is a short walk from Camden Town (about 1/3 mile). Any other route will take you into zone 1 and cost considerably more.

  25. Hi Mike,
    I don’ really understand the whole OSI thing, however, from what I think I got I conclude that there might be a problem with my planned journey from Putney Bridge to Greenwich Station via Canary Wharf and a walk to Heron Quays. Worthwhile using Oyster or not? Thanks a lot in advance.

  26. Hi Christian,

    Absolutely fine. That’s what the OSI is for, to join both parts of that journey up.