LU Photography: The Rules

Conditions of Carriage

This document is updated at least annually, sometime more regularly. The current version (published 22 May 2011) states:

4.5. For safety reasons, on our buses and Underground trains and in our bus and Underground stations you must not:

  • smoke
  • use cycles, roller skates, roller blades, scooters, skateboards or similar equipment
  • take flash photographs and/or use a tripod or other camera support equipment
  • use emergency exits except in an emergency or when instructed to do so by our staff.

You may be prosecuted for disobeying these requirements.

The full range of current TfL Conditions of Carriage documents can be found in the Ticketing and Travel page on the TfL website.

Traffic Circular

A document that is published weekly for London Underground staff regarding updates about operation standards. This intermittently states:

Tourists or train enthusiasts “passing through” stations are permitted to take ad-hoc photographs or film at the Station Supervisor’s discretion. However, tripods are not permitted and flash must not be used on platforms.

TfL Website: Common Questions

In the Tube Common Questions section of the TfL website, type in the word ‘photography’. In the article “Taking photographs on the tube” a question asks:

Do I need permission to film or take photographs on the tube?

The answer:

If you are just passing through, you shouldn't have a problem taking personal snaps, souvenir shots etc, although you must NOT use flash or lights on any of our platforms.

However, if you want to spend more than 10-15 minutes at any one station videoing or taking photos, or if they are for professional use, you MUST have a permit.

London Underground Photography and Filming Permits

The LU Film unit also provides Photography and Filming Permits for commercial as well as student and/or non-professional photographers.

Non-professional / Student Cost: £40 per month (incl. VAT)

Other Documents

TfL Terms & Conditions

TfL Bylaws: