Something To Declare: London tube and bus fares; Avignon; Miami beach; 48 Hours in London

Warning of the week: Tube and bus fares to rise in London

From 2 January, bus, tube and tram fares in London will increase. For travellers, the cash price of a one-way ticket between the centre and Heathrow airport rises from £4 to £4.50.

Single fares for a short trip in Zone 1, the central area, remain at £4. Almost any visitor will be better off investing in a pay-as-you-go Oyster stored-value card, for example through the Transport for London online shop: www.; prices start at £10 plus the £2 cost of the card. An Oyster card gives access to lower fares (£1.80 for a single journey off-peak, £2.30 peak). And the system is structured so that anyone making a number of journeys on the same day reaches a "cap" of £7.20 (or £5.60 for travel only off-peak).

From the new year, pay-as-you-go Oyster cards will also be valid on overground trains in the city and suburbs.

Finally, transport in London is free on New Year's Eve from 11.45pm until 4.30am.

Destination of the week: Avignon, next summer

Although drivers belonging to the Aslef union are striking this week in a row over meal allowances, Eurostar is immune to the kinds of disputes that plague aviation, involving parties such as cabin crew and air-traffic controllers. This is one reason for the popularity of the summer long-distance, high-speed train service (08432 186 186; to Provence – terminating at Avignon Centre station – which goes on sale this Tuesday, 22 December.

On summer Saturdays from 10 July to 11 September, a train will run between London and Avignon Centre (very handy for the city itself, though a long way from Avignon TGV station, which is on the high-speed line with connections deeper into Provence and to the Côte d'Azur; a shuttle bus operates between the two stations every 20 minutes and takes around 10 minutes, fare €3.)

The journey from London St Pancras International takes just under six hours, and stops at Ashford International in both directions.

Prices start at £109 return in standard class and £249 return in "Leisure Select", the version of first class used on this service.

Connecting fares are available from 200 towns and cities across the UK, including Milton Keynes from £123 return, Derby from £129 return, and Peterborough from £130 return.

Bargain of the week: Designs on Miami Beach

Transatlantic fares for the next two weeks are astronomical, due to the uncertainties caused by the BA dispute. But if you can defer a flight to Miami until January you can expect low prices and sunny skies. The optimum weekend to be in town is 15-17 January, when the annual Art Deco festival takes place; ArtDec for more details.

The 2010 theme is the car, and "the American spirit embodied in the open road". The lowest fares are on connecting flights – typically £400 return on Delta from Heathrow via New York JFK, or from Gatwick via Atlanta. Non-stop flights on Virgin Atlantic from Heathrow are currently around £440 if you travel midweek and stay over a Saturday night.

Tip of the week: 48 Hours in London

The capital is celebrated in the latest film in our city-break series, which premiers on Tuesday at 9pm on Travel Channel (available at Sky channel 251). The print version will appear here next Saturday, 26 December.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Guru Careers: Dining Room Head Chef

    £32K: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Dining Room Head Chef to work for one of ...

    Guru Careers: Pastry Sous Chef / Experienced Pastry Chef

    £27K: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Pastry Sous Chef / Experienced Pastry Che...

    Ashdown Group: Technical IT Manager - North London - Growing business

    £40000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A growing business that has been ope...

    Recruitment Genius: Technical Supervisor

    £24800 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As one of London's leading Muse...

    Day In a Page

    General Election 2015: ‘We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon’, says Ed Balls

    'We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon'

    In an exclusive interview, Ed Balls says he won't negotiate his first Budget with SNP MPs - even if Labour need their votes to secure its passage
    VE Day 70th anniversary: How ordinary Britons celebrated the end of war in Europe

    How ordinary Britons celebrated VE Day

    Our perception of VE Day usually involves crowds of giddy Britons casting off the shackles of war with gay abandon. The truth was more nuanced
    They came in with William Caxton's printing press, but typefaces still matter in the digital age

    Typefaces still matter in the digital age

    A new typeface once took years to create, now thousands are available at the click of a drop-down menu. So why do most of us still rely on the old classics, asks Meg Carter?
    Discovery of 'missing link' between the two main life-forms on Earth could explain evolution of animals, say scientists

    'Missing link' between Earth's two life-forms found

    New microbial species tells us something about our dark past, say scientists
    Ronald McDonald the muse? Why Banksy, Ron English and Keith Coventry are lovin' Maccy D's

    Ronald McDonald the muse

    A new wave of artists is taking inspiration from the fast food chain
    13 best picnic blankets

    13 best picnic blankets

    Dine al fresco without the grass stains and damp bottoms with something from our pick of picnic rugs
    General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

    Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

    He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
    General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

    On the margins

    From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
    Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

    'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

    Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
    Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

    Why patients must rely less on doctors

    Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'
    Sarah Lucas is the perfect artist to represent Britain at the Venice Biennale

    Flesh in Venice

    Sarah Lucas has filled the British pavilion at the Venice Biennale with slinky cats and casts of her female friends' private parts. It makes you proud to be a woman, says Karen Wright
    11 best anti-ageing day creams

    11 best anti-ageing day creams

    Slow down the ageing process with one of these high-performance, hardworking anti-agers
    Juventus 2 Real Madrid 1: Five things we learnt, including Iker Casillas is past it and Carlos Tevez remains effective

    Juventus vs Real Madrid

    Five things we learnt from the Italian's Champions League first leg win over the Spanish giants
    Ashes 2015: Test series looks a lost cause for England... whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket

    Ashes series looks a lost cause for England...

    Whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket, says Stephen Brenkley
    Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

    Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

    Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected