London Paralympics Travel

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Getting to the Games: London Underground

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Getting to the Games: London Underground
The tube at Westminster
Stratford Tube
Stratford Regional Station
London 2012 - Mayor Boris Johnson stands alongside a Javelin train
To avoid jams like this, leave your cars at home!
View Of The London Eye & Big Ben


"The last thing any spectator wants is a sprint finish to get to the venue in time," says transport minister Norman Baker. Too true: London is a huge city, and with Paralympic events being held not only in the Olympic Park at Stratford but all over the capital, you will have to think very carefully about your travel arrangements getting to and from the Games. The good news is that millions have been spent on improving London's transport infrastructure in time for the Games – and this should be felt not just during the Games, but as a lasting legacy for all Londoners and visitors to this great city. For a better look at just where the venues are located, check out our map of the London Paralympics.

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Paralympic Journey Planner

The best way to plan your journey to and from the Games


A key online tool has been devised to help all spectators planning their travel arrangements during the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics. The Spectator Journey Planner is tailored specifically for the Games and will provide: estimated journey times to and from London 2012 venues from anywhere in Great Britain by rail, coach, bus, river or tube; estimated walking and cycling times between venues; timetable information for forward planning; links to travel booking sites to enable early ticket purchase; recommended routes to make your journey as easy as possible. To plan your journey click here.


Games Travelcard

Free public transport for everyone with a Paralympic ticket


All spectators with valid tickets for any Games events in London will receive a complimentary Games Travelcard to use on public transport in London on the day of their event. This means you'll be able to travel on any means of public transport within zones 1-9 in London, plus National Rail services between London and venues near London, such as Eton Dorney.


London Underground

The Tube will get you to every event in London


All the Paralympic events within the Olympic Park can be easily reached via the Central and Jubilee Lines to Stratford Station. River Zone venues in and around Greenwich – including the North Greenwich Arena and the ExCeL Centre - can be accessed via the Jubilee Line. From Bank Tube station in central London, spectators can take the DLR train to both the River Zone and the Olympic Park.


DLR & Overground

While the athletes train, you can simply take the train


The Dockland Light Railway will play an integral role in transporting spectators around the east London venues during London 2012. The Olympic Park will be served by Stratford DLR, while venues throughout the River Zone in Greenwich, Woolwich and north of the Thames will be best accessible by the DLR. Overground rail services will also serve the Olympic Park via Stratford Regional Station. National Rail train services will also serve venues outside London, such as Eton Dorney, Brands Hatch and Weymouth and Portland.


The Javelin and International Rail Links

Central London to the Olympic Park


A new high-speed rail service will deliver passengers from Kings Cross St Pancras to Stratford International in just seven minutes. Eight Javelin® trains an hour will run between St Pancras International in central London and Ebbsfleet in Kent, calling at Stratford International, which is located just a few hundred metres walk from the Olympic Park. Up to an estimated 25,000 travellers will use the Javelin® per hour. Passengers from mainland Europe arriving on the Eurostar service can change at either Ebbsfleet or St Pancras to reach Stratford International. A Javelin® test run from St Pancras to Stratford International took place in July 2009 – three years to the day ahead of the Games – with a journey time of six minutes and 45 seconds.


Park & Ride

Leave your cars behind and take a shuttle service to the Games


Spectators are advised not to drive to any venues: roads will be busy and there are no parking facilities at, or near, any of the Olympic and Paralympic venues. If you're coming to the Games from outside London and you wish to drive, then there will be a number of Park-and-Ride services where you can leave your vehicle and then take a short shuttle bus service to the venues. There are Park-and-Ride services for the Olympic Park, ExCeL, Weymouth and Portland, Eton Dorney and Greenwich Park. Tickets include a space for your car or minibus and onward bus or coach transfer to your venue. Prices start from £12 but spaces are limited and must be booked in advance.


Coach Services

Day return coach services from all over the UK


Running from towns and cities across England and Wales, day return direct coach services are available to the Olympic Park, Weymouth and Portland, and ExCeL. These services avoid central London and so are ideal if you don't know the capital or if you're travelling with younger children.


River Services

Avoid the roads and take a boat to your events


The River Zone in London 2012 is accessible by riverboat services, which are a fast, efficient and fun way to travel around the capital. Greenwich Park, North Greenwich Arena and the Royal Artillery Barracks are all accessible by river, while more distant venues such as Eton Dorney (reachable via Windsor) can also be reached by boat. Regular London commuters that live and work beside the Thames use river transport on a regular basis – not only do you avoid traffic, it's a great way to see some of the best sights London has to offer. There will be two types of official river transport during the Games: the 2012 Games River Bus Express, which provides a fast commuter-style service, and the 2012 Games River Tours, which get you to your destination at a leisurely pace and throw in some tourist commentary for good measure. If you have a Games Travelcard there will be a one-third discount for all river services.


Travel Tips

Some final pointers to make sure you get to your event on time


  • Allow as much time as possible for your journeys as London's transport system will be much busier than usual
  • Remember to allow for queuing times and walking between large venues in the Olympic Park and River Zone
  • Cars are a no-no: don't even think about bringing your vehicle – unless you hold a valid Blue Badge or recognised national disability permit
  • Cycling can be the perfect way to get to, from and around the OlympicPark: there are some delightful cycle paths along some unknown canals and stretches of water in east London, while there will be ample cycling parking for both adults' and children's bicycles at all the venues. With so much to do and see all over the Park and London in itself, you can combine your Paralympic sporting event with some sightseeing to make a proper London 2012 day out
  • Children aged 10 and under travel for free within London – and there are concessions for 11- to 15-year-olds, 16- to 18-year-olds, OAPs and students aged 18+
For more information on travelling around London in general please visit and for Paralympic-specific travel information visit Alternatively, plan your journey with the spectator journey planner here.


Emirates Air-Line

Stunning cable car crossing the Thames


One of Mayor Boris Johnson's big initial plans for London 2012 was this proposed cable car link across the Thames from Greenwich Peninsula to the Royal Docks. Similar to the service that operates between Manhattan and Roosevelt Island in New York, the Thames Gateway Cable Car - now officially named the Emirates Air-Line after a 10-year sponsorship deal with the Dubai-based aircraft carrier - will connect Olympic venues the North Greenwich Arena and the ExCeL Exhibition Centre. At 1km in length and running 60m above the Thames, the cable car will provide a "much-needed river crossing" and a "bird's eye view" of the capital, according to Boris. Once finished, crossings are planned every 30 seconds for up to 2,500 passengers per hour in each direction, and views will be fairly spectacular. Bikes will be able to be transported with passengers, who will also be able to tap in using their Oyster Cards. Work started in July 2011 on the £60m gondola-style project - the first urban cable car in the UK and the most expensive of its kind in the world - and it is set for completion in time for the Games. After early concerns, Transport for London had back-pedalled a little, saying that the cable car was never a part of TfL's Olympic transport strategy. Completing the project in time for London 2012 was simply an "aspiration", they said, and trying to get the project up and running for the Games would be "challenging". But it looks like the game has been won - and it is hoped that the cable car will have a similar impact on the city's skyline as the London Eye.

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