London’s streets were at their quietest for five months today during rush hour. Britons worked from home as they continued to be concerned about Omicron.

The congestion level reported by TomTom in the capital between 7am and 8am today was 41 per cent – the lowest for that period on a Wednesday since before the summer holidays, when half-term is excluded.

These figures show the time it takes to complete a journey in a given situation compared to free flowing conditions. If there’s no traffic, then a 30-minute journey will take you 12 minutes longer.

In comparison, congestion for the same period in London on a Wednesday has been between 49 and 54 per cent for the last six weeks in a row – and the low traffic levels were also replicated in other cities in England today.

The London level dropped to 33 percent in half-term, while it fluctuated between 24 and 33 percent during the summer holidays. It was at 33% on July 21st, the last Tuesday it fell below 41 percent.

The congestion levels in other UK cities were 31% in Birmingham, Manchester, 28% in Leeds, 28% in Sheffield, 25% in Newcastle, and 24% in Liverpool between 7 and 8 am today.

These numbers were all below Wednesday’s time frame, with Manchester showing the largest drop of 21 percent and Liverpool recording a 13 point decline.

Transport for London yesterday revealed that Underground users have dropped by over 25% within a span of a week, as Britons avoid going to work. 

A very quiet Westminster Bridge this morning with London's roads remaining very quiet as more people work from home

This morning, Westminster Bridge was very peaceful. London roads remain very quiet because more people are working from home.

People cross the road on the south side of Westminster Bridge during rush hour this morning as London remains quiet

As London is quiet, people cross the street on the South Side of Westminster Bridge in rush hour.

The congestion level reported by TomTom in the capital between 7am and 8am today (far right) was 41 per cent

TomTom reported a congestion level of 41% in the capital today, between 7am-8am.

Rush hour traffic is much quieter than normal on this main road into Birmingham photographed this morning

Photographed this morning at Birmingham, rush hour traffic is quieter than usual on the main road.

Cars are driven along a main road into Birmingham this morning as congestion levels remain low across England today

Because congestion is low in England, cars are driving along the main roads into Birmingham today

Datum Birmingham Leeds-Bradford Liverpool London Manchester Newcastle Sheffield
Wednesday, 3 November 42% 34% 26% 49% 41% 30% 35%
Wed, 10 Nov  42% 47% 26% 53% 46% 32% 33%
Friday, 17 November  38% 35% 26% 53% 48% 30% 36%
23 Nov  45% 35% 40% 50% 42% 33% 36%
Wed. 1 Dec  49% 36% 28% 54% 44% 33% 37%
Wed, 8 Dec  42% 37% 37% 52% 52% 30% 35%
Wed, 15 Dec  31% 29% 24% 41% 31% 25% 28%

One million Tube passengers were able to enter or leave the Tube between 10 AM and 11 PM yesterday. That’s down 26% from Tuesday, but less than half of the pre-pandemic normal level (45%)

Transport for London announced that yesterday’s bus usage in the capital fell to 1.16million Oyster, or contactless card taps. Although it was down 8 percentage points from last week however still at 70% of pre–Covid levels.

Partly, the difference in Tubes and Buses is due to children who use them more often than buses. The other reason for this is that they are used less frequently by Londoners working in key roles such as teachers and cleaners.

Although the TfL network had roughly the same number of users yesterday as Monday morning, there was an even bigger drop because Mondays are generally more quiet in recent months due to the increased use of remote workers.

TfL (which runs London’s Tubes and Tubes) recorded a 18% reduction in Tube trips up to 10am on Monday. Bus usage fell 6 percent. However, Monday’s week-on-week drop in Tube journeys was just 12 percent for Tubes, and only 2% on buses. This is mainly because leisure travel hasn’t fallen as far as commuters.

Today’s morning rush hour congestion in London was at its lowest level since July.  

The following graph shows London traffic congestion on Wednesday mornings, since July. You can see the full dTomTom’s ata refers to the slot between 7am and 8am. This shows how much extra time is required to travel compared to free-flowing conditions.

Wed 16 Dec – 41%

Wed 8 Dec – 52%

Wed 1 Dec – 54%

Wed 24 Nov – 50%

Wed 17 Nov – 53%

Wed 10 Nov – 53%

Wed 3 Nov – 49%

Wednesday 27 October – 33% for half-term

Wednesday, 20 October – 51%

Wednesday 13 October – 50%

Wednesday, October 6th – 48%

Wednesday 29 September – 54%

Wednesday 22 Sept – 58%

Friday, 15th Sep: 53%

Wednesday, 8 September – 47%

Wed 1 Sep – 33% (summer holidays) 

Wed 25 Aug – 28% (summer holidays)

Wed 18 Aug – 24% (summer holidays)

Wed 11 Aug – 24% (summer holidays)

Wed 4 Aug – 24% (summer holidays)

Wed 28 Jul – 27% (summer holidays)

Wednesday 21 July – 33%

Wednesday 14th July: 40%

Wed, 7 Jul – 38%

A very quiet London Euston train station yesterday as people continue to follow Government advice to work from home

Yesterday’s London Euston station was quiet as many people continued to follow the Government’s advice and work remotely.

A quiet Piccadilly line train carriage on the London Underground yesterday during the morning rush hour

Yesterday’s morning rush hour, this quiet Piccadilly train carriage was on the London Underground.

People pass through London Waterloo station during the morning rush-hour yesterday amid the work from home guidance

In the midst of the Work from Home guidance, people pass London Waterloo station yesterday morning.

According to transport bosses, the largest reductions were made at stations in London, where around 318.400 people entered and exited on Monday, compared with 415.300 the week before.

TfL recorded nearly 541,000 Tube station entry and exits for Monday. That’s compared to the 581,000 entries and exits in the previous week.

Boris Johnson encouraged people to work at home as much as possible during a press conference on Wednesday. It brought England into line with the rest in the UK.

This comes at a time when the NHS is intensifying its mammoth booster efforts even further. All adults in England will be offered a third shot to stop the Omicron variant spreading.

In a sad television advertisement, the country’s most prominent medic reminded people to “please get boosted now” in an appeal. The rollout is open to all 18-year-olds and over.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson gives a thumbs up to photographers today as he is driven in a car for his morning run in London

Boris Johnson is seen giving a thumbs up today to photographers as he travels in a car on his London morning run.




The Parliament approved new restrictions last night. These include the requirement that you cover your face at indoor spaces more often in England. Also, the NHS Covid pass was introduced to allow access to larger venues and nightclubs.

Johnson was the victim of the biggest rebellion in his tenure as premier in the Commons, with almost 100 Conservative MPs voting no to the compulsory passes measures.

Chris Hopson chief executive at NHS Providers, however, welcomed majority support for new rules. Chris Hopson said that the changes’should slow the spreadof the virus and relieve pressure on the NHS as the NHS heads into what’s set to be the most difficult winter in our history’.

Prior to the launch, Prime Minister Tony Blair thanked NHS workers and requested their support in making the country the largest, most efficient vaccination drive it has seen.

All over-18s have access to the NHS National Book System. A booster can be ordered after three months, but not before two.

Downing Street didn’t reject the suggestion that Omicron infections could reach a million each day next week. This was based upon a “valid” estimate by the UK Health Security Agency, which indicated that Omicrons are at around 200,000.

People in Scotland were urged not to mix with other people and to only socialize indoors with two households on either side of Christmas.

In Northern Ireland, lawmakers also supported mandatory Covid certification for patrons who want to enter nightclubs and pubs as well as restaurants or other licensed establishments.

The public in Wales was advised to be prepared for additional restrictions over the next few weeks. However, Wales’ health minister stated that politicians don’t want to cancel Christmas.

Today, the hotel quarantine system for travelers arriving into England at 4 AM has been lifted. This is because Omicron spreads in the UK and the measures to stop cases from being imported are less effective.