Updated: Oct 9, 2022
The Congestion Charge is a £15 daily charge if you drive within the Congestion Charge zone in London. Originally, it was a bold proposal to relieve traffic in the core of the capital, but since the outbreak of the pandemic, many say this was used as an opportunity to extort the capital's most vulnerable residents and mobile car valeters like ourselves.
Formerly, the charge applied between the hours of 7:00-18:00 Monday-Friday and 12:00-18:00 Sat-Sun and bank holidays in the heart of the capital.
However, during the pandemic TFL ran into financial difficulty and was subsequently bailed out by the UK government. I'm sure we all know, nothing in the life is free, as one of the bailout conditions were to extend the charging times from 07:00-18:00 on weekdays to 07:00-22:00 every day. If you're a small business like us, or a commuter, this change added hours onto your commute each week and cost our mobile car valet business £000's over its course, especially as we have multiple vans and drivers on the roads.
The London Mayor, Sadiq Khan has since faced pressure from the hospitality industry in the capital from the reduced influx of custom. The Mayor has now agreed to reduce the congestion charge hours to its times of 7:00-18:00 Monday-Friday and 12:00-18:00 Sat-Sun and bank holidays effective from the 21st February 2022.