Tube sign Gareth Southgate

Can adverts save TfL’s finances?

11 October 2018

Transport for London (TfL) is running a deficit of £1 billion for 2018/19 and does not expect to turn around the organisation’s precarious finances until 2021-22. Delays to the opening of Crossrail will just compound the problems.


As part of an investigation into TfL’s worrying fiscal position the London Assembly Budget and Performance Committee commissioned a survey asking Londoners about ways to raise cash from advertising. What would Londoners live with, in order to boost the financial situation of TfL?


The main survey findings are:

  • 72% support more advertising digital screens on the transport network with just 16% against
  • 61% opposed audio adverts - either using the existing announcement system or via the display screens
  • 56% opposed pop up ads when using wifi on the tube – 32% were in favour
  • 59% of people support sponsorship deals to rename Tube stations and lines – 25% were against
  • Half those asked support advertising around cycle lanes with 31% against


Gareth Bacon AM, Chairman of the Budget and Performance Committee, said:


“Londoners have surprised us with how open they are to helping TfL raise money via advertising. Now we know what they do and do not like to be exposed to on their journeys around the transport network – we can make recommendations to TfL in the hope they are able to raise some much-needed cash.


“Advertising in cycle lanes, more digital advertising screens and sponsored tube stations might be abhorrent to some, but they may well be steps worth considering given the dire state of Transport for London’s finances.”

Notes to editors

  1. Gareth Bacon AM, Chairman of the Budget and Performance Committee is available for interview. See contact details below
  2. The full report conducted by YouGov which surveyed 1,003 adults who live in London is attached.
  3. London Assembly Budget and Performance Committee
  4.  As well as investigating issues that matter to Londoners, the London Assembly acts as a check and a balance on the Mayor.


For media enquiries, please contact Howard Wheeler on 020 7983 5769.  For out of hours media enquiries, call 020 7983 4000 and ask for the London Assembly duty press officer.  Non-media enquiries should be directed to the Public Liaison Unit on 020 7983 4100. 

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