Londoners who use the city's public transport network had been expecting this morning to introduce the annual fare rises to which they've become accustomed - but instead, they were treated to completely free travel, following a massive technical failure affecting the Oyster smart card ticketing system.
The exact cause of the problem is not yet known, but it apparently affected the entire Transport for London (TfL) network, prompting staff to leave ticket barriers open at Underground, Overground and National Rail stations in the London travel zones. Passengers were also able to board buses and trams without having to touch their Oyster cards against the readers.
TfL acknowledged the "technical issues" via social media:
However, if you decided to treat yourself to a lie-in this morning in London, you slept through the good times. TfL has now restored all Oyster card facilities across the network, so if you're travelling around the city today, you'll have to pay your way as normal - and don't forget about those fare increases too.
Source: The Telegraph