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How to exchange your dormant TfL Oyster card for a cash refund?

- Published on 28th November 2016

Oyster cards submitted for refund

£170 Million unclaimed cash on dormant TfL Oyster cards

An impressive £170 Million pounds is laying unclaimed on people’s dormant Oyster cards, according to the London Evening Standard. Do you have an Oyster card which you no longer use? Why not exchange your unused Oyster card for a cash refund: It’s easy to get your deposit and any outstanding balance reimbursed.

Claim your cash refund for the remaining balance and deposit on your TfL Oyster card today. It’s an easy 2-step process. You’ll receive the money within 7 working days. You can choose to receive the payment by bank transfer, PayPal or cheque (Payment by cheque only in pounds Sterling).

How much cash will I receive for my dormant TfL Oyster card?

The value of your dormant TfL Oyster card is made up of two parts: The balance and the deposit. 

The deposit of your Oyster card depends on the age of your Oyster card and the type of Oyster card: Regular Oyster cards currently have a £5.00 deposit. The visitor Oyster card has a £3.00 deposit. Older cards might have a lower deposit.

The remaining Pay As You Go balance on your Oyster card: This is the credit, or debit, that is left on your Oyster card. Here is how much you will receive in payment for your dormant Oyster card:

  • We pay out 92% of the balance on your Oyster card.
  • We pay out the deposit on your Oyster card minus a £1 fee.

To claim a cash refund for your dormant TfL Oyster card, follow these two simple steps:

  1. Print the Leftover Currency exchange form and fill it out: Indicate how many Tfl Oyster cards you want to exchange, in the ‘A’ section (banknotes) under ‘Oyster Cards’. Fill out your personal details and select a payment method.
  2. Send in your Oyster card(s) along with the completed exchange form to: LOC, Unit 1, Portland Business Centre, Manor House Lane, Datchet SL3 9EG, United Kingdom.

We’ll send you a confirmation email upon receipt of your Oyster card(s). You’ll receive payment within 7 working days.

Are there any limitations?

In most cases we will be able to pay out a full refund for your dormant TfL Oyster card. However in some cases this may not be possible. You cannot redeem your TfL Oyster card for cash if any of these limitations apply:

  • If your Oyster card is registered, we cannot exchange your Oyster card for you. You can claim a refund online via Transport for London.
  • If your Oyster card has an ID photo on it, to identify the owner.
  • If your remaining credit was paid for by different payment methods (e.g. cash and card), the maximum refund is £10.00. This is because of TfL’s regulations.
  • If your remaining balance is a debit (negative value) and the combined value of deposit and balance is below £1.00.
  • If your Oyster card is damaged or broken.

The age of your Oyster card is not a factor: Oyster cards do not have an expiry date. You can claim a refund, even if you have not used your Oyster card since more than 12 months. (so-called dormant Oyster cards). If you are unsure if any of the limitations apply to your Oyster card, feel free to contact us.


Mario Van Poppel

Mario Van Poppel is the founder and director of Leftover Currency. What started as a hobby, collecting world banknotes, evolved into a fulltime job, running a successful online bureau de change. Mario is still a collector of pre-Euro banknotes and a member of the IBNS.