Travelling thru London by car is exciting but challenging but negotiating the Transport for London’s website for Congestion Charging is down right hairy.
We travelled into London by car outside the Congestion Zone (which is mainly the tourist part of London) but when we got home a day later – decided to put our number plate in the TFL’s website – just to be sure – but became worried my car had instead attracted anther charge – the Low Emission Charge which effects most of London (mainly Diesal vans and possibly cars) – that when i saw our car was registered for that day in London on the website – paid the £14s (rather than risk a Penalty) and only afterwards reallised – neither charges applied to us.
I dont drive a diesal vehical and was not in the Zone.
Phoned today and was told – that the cameras only feedback information whether you have been in the Congestion Zone – 48 working day hours after you have been there which is already outside the 2 days that you have to pay the Charge before you get a Penalty and apparently – the decision that you need to pay – in the first 2 days – is only your responsability. There seems to be no system in place to prevent a payment in error.
Refunds through the website – can only be made on the current day – so if you ask for a refund for a date before the current day – it cant be done – (at least not easily). Also there is a £10 Administration Charge for a refund!
Perhaps money is held but not taken from your card unless the cameras verify it? But there is no information to tell you this. Have to admit without any response (so far) to emails sent – I contacted my credit card company to cancel.
Important to check your route before you go – to plan if possible to avoid the Zone and dont panic & assume you have to pay Charges if when you check your route – you know you are not travelling in the Zone (and your car is not a Diesal one)
and its always cheaper to pay in advance or on the day
Wonder what experiences other people have had? The website (and contact staff) need to be clearer how the process works especially when you pay in error and who the Charges will effect and know what the cost of the Low Emission Charge is – although reallise it is a leftover from a previous mayor/organisation. Less complaints and time/money wasted dealing with them.
Maybe there should be an example on the website what the Signage looks like for people not familar with London – so we know what to look out for and it made more clear that C.C. is £11.95 on the day increasing to £14.00s the day after.