Thames Clippers (North Greenwich - Waterloo)



Yesterday, I decided to spontaneously take river boat trip on the Thames with the Thames Clippers. We started at North Greenwich (by the O2 Dome) travelling through Tower Bridge, Canary Wharf and Westminster, hopping off at Waterloo and then back again.


Booking
Before booking its best to check out the route maps and timetables which can be found here


You can use your oyster card and under 5s travel free. The full prices can be found here and I’d recommend opting for buying your ticket in advanced and getting the hop on hop off Roamer ticket if you’re planning on stopping off more than twice.


Departures
There were various staff members dotted along the pier for customer support to as multiple boating companies use the docks so it can get confusing (although it’s pretty well sign posted and we found it easy enough). We arrived about 10 minutes before the departure time and found it really easy to get on/off the boat with a buggy because a bridge/ramp is used to access it.


On-board
You’re only able to sit outside at the back of the boat (some of the competitors’ boats are open topped) or inside and are able to move about the boat freely, switching from inside to outside and back again as many times as you please, and even visit the on board bar area that serves a variety of snacks and beverages.


Children are given a pack of pencils and an entertainment book to keep them occupied that encourages them to engage their surroundings and do a bit of sightseeing and gives them a bit of information about the crew and fleet (we were given ours as we lined up before getting on but I’m sure you can ask at the bar for one).


The seats are super comfy and are contoured to the shape of your body and aren’t just flat and stiff like train/underground seats. During our trip various announcements were made to let passengers know which pier we were docking at next and there was a screen towards the front that advertised local attractions.


Our Verdict
We’re definitely planning on taking the Thames Clipper again – the staff were really friendly and helpful and it makes a nice change from the underground, even if it does take a little longer. For those of you planning on taking a trip I’d suggest docking at one of the less busy stops as you’re more likely to get a prime seat upfront or out back (where the space was more limited). If you’re planning on visiting attractions then check out their deals page where you can buy bundles on attractions at a lower cost here




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