The London congestion charge is a £15 daily charge for any vehicles that drive within the congestion zone between 7am and 10pm, (aside from the 25th December). The congestion charge was recently adjusted as of 2020 in response to not reverting to pre-pandemic congestion, assisting the streetspace programme by making walking and cycling safer and bus journeys more dependable, as well as reducing emissions.
How do I know if I’ve been in the London Congestion Zone?
On the Transport for London website, you can check to see which areas of London are included in the congestion zone. The zone covers most of central London though, including the City of Westminster, the City of London and parts of the London Boroughs of Camden, Lambeth and Southwark.
There are no toll booths at the start of the Congestion Zone. When you enter and exit the zone, cameras record your number plate.
There are also clear signs on roads approaching central London telling you how far you are from the Congestion Charge Zone and when you exit.
Do I have to pay the congestion charge?
Only if you drive the vehicle between 7am and 10pm daily within the congestion zone do you have to pay. So, in other words if you leave your car parked for a few days, you only have to pay for the day you drove the car through the zone.
How to pay the congestion charge
The daily charge is £15 if you pay in advance or on the same day, or £17.50 by midnight of the third charging day after travel. If you don’t pay by midnight on the third charging day after travel in the zone, you will receive a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) for £130, which will be sent to your home address. If you pay within 14 days, the fine is reduced to £65.
You can pay the congestion charge in several ways:
This is the quickest and easiest route. If you or your business regularly drive more than 5 vehicles within a charging zone, choose Fleet Auto Pay.
You can find out more about the benefits of Auto Pay and Fleet Auto Pay and sign up here.
You can pay the Congestion Charge online with a Transport for London account. With this again you can set up Auto Pay and make faster payments by storing your contact, vehicle and payment details. Payment is made by credit or debit card.
Pay via the TfL Pay to Drive in London app
This free, official app helps you pay your Congestion Charge, ULEZ and Low Emission Zone (LEZ) charges. You can also set up AutoPay.
Pay by phone
UK: 0343 222 2222 (TfL call charges)
International:+44 343 222 2222
Textphone: 020 7649 9123 (if you have impaired hearing)
Monday to Friday: 08:00-20:00
Closed on weekends and bank holidays
You will need:
- the vehicle registration number
- country of registration
- your credit/debit card details
The congestion charge could see trips taken by car fall by a third and as a result pollutant emissions fall by up to 11%.