Oyster card may be replaced by Credit cards or Mobile phones

Speaking in front on the London Assembly on Tuesday, the head of future ticketing at Transport for London made it clear that the organisation is considering all options for the Oyster card used by millions on the London underground.

Will Judge said that TFL is looking to save millions of pounds by switching to what it calls a more conventional contract which would use other modes of ticketing including smartcards, mobile phones or even a bank card.

The current system, which used RFID-equipped smartcard, could be replaced as TFL ended its contract with Transys, a consortium comprising of EDS, Cubic, Fujitsu and WS Atkins, back in August and is looking for replacements.

It will be outsourced to third parties and the Oyster name could be canned altogether, with the added cost of rebranding a recognised solution.

TFL also announced its intention to divide the travelcard contract into separate modules which will be awarded to diffent suppliers in a bid to reduce operating costs and improve reliability - Oyster has already been hit with two major outages in July.

Last November, O2 trialled an Oyster credit card mobile phone which proved to be quite popular.