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Traveling by London public transit with a dog

Photo by Salim Virji

Getting to London with a small dog isn’t easy (though the PETS scheme has certainly made it easier), but once you’re there, you’ll be able to take your dog on all forms of public transit. The types of transit included under Transport for London‘s umbrella include the Underground (“tube”), buses, the Docklands Light Railway (“DLR”), river boats, the tram, and the London Overground rail system.

Dogs, either on leashes or in a carrier, are allowed on the tube and on London buses without charge. You must carry your dog on escalators and through the automatic ticket gates, and you cannot allow her on a seat.

The same rules apply [PDF] for the Docklands Light Railway, which stretches west to Bank, north to Stratford, south to Lewisham, and east to Beckton and Woolwich Arsenal.

The same rules apply [PDF] for the Croydon Tramlink (“Tramlink“) system in south London.

The same rules apply [PDF] for the London Overground system, which currently includes four commuter rail lines (Richmond to Stratford, Clapham Junction to Willesden Junction, Gospel Oak to Barking, and Watford Junction to Euston).

And how about river boats, which serve both commuters and tourists? I couldn’t find a Conditions of Carriage that applied, so I wrote to Travel for London and asked whether dogs are allowed on board river boats, and under what conditions. Here’s what I was told: “This is at the discretion of the operator of the river boat service you intend to take. Each river boat service is operated by a different company. Please contact the operator of the route you are interested in. A guide to London river boat services which contains contact details can be found at”

For other posts about traveling with dogs on public transit, take a look at Dog Jaunt’s handy guide!


  • vic

    Why are all of these post about travelling specifically with a “small” dog? Is this information not applicable for taking transit with any dog?

  • Hi, Vic — This blog focuses on traveling with a small dog, because that’s the kind of dog I have (Chloe’s a 13 lb. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel). Whenever I can, though, I provide links to a transit system’s actual language, so that owners of larger dogs can read it and see if their pup can join them. In this instance, you’ll note that leashed dogs are allowed, meaning that your larger dog can accompany you, so long as she’s leashed. My Chloe needs either to be leashed or in a carrier.

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