For many Londoners, using public transport is a fact of life. With such an extensive system of railways, the Underground and DLR, travelling in the busy capital is a lot easier than the task facing people trying to get from A to B in other British cities. 

This may account for the fact that London has the lowest levels of car ownership in the UK. RAC figures compiled using 2011 Census data on the 348 local authorities in England and Wales found the capital accounted for the 16 with the lowest ownership rates. Given the arrival of Crossrail since then, that situation is hardly likely to prove different when the 2021 Census figures emerge.

However, many of those without a car can still drive and might choose to use car renting in London to get around the capital or beyond when services are disrupted by strikes.

There have been plenty of these already over the summer on both mainline and Underground services, with more in the offing on August 18th and 20th. These will affect services by Arriva Rail London, Chiltern Railways, Greater Anglia, Great Western, Hull Trains, LNER, Southeastern, London Overground, and West Midlands Trains.

In addition, there will be Tube strikes on August 19th and even some buses will be affected by industrial action that day.

Transport for London has warned that there will be particular problems on the Tube on August 19th, with almost no services. There will also be reduced services on the Elizabeth Line, Overground and DLR. Moreover, it notes, when there is disruption from strikes the services can be affected the following day too, as rolling stock often starts the next day in the wrong place to meet timetables.

With the possibility of further stoppages as the rail unions demand higher pay settlements, this sort of disruption may be repeated many more times in the months ahead. That could make hiring a car a wise move for those needing to get around London.

Leave a Reply