Issues using card at Kings Cross tube barriers


Just wondering if anybody has had similar? Basically I tried using my card at the barriers in Kings Cross tube, and kept getting a red light on the contactless reader. The first time it was at the start of my journey, so after numerous fails, I got my legacy bank card out, which worked first time. I then thought I’d give it another try at London Bridge tube, and it scanned first time. But then when I tried to exit the tube at Kings Cross, I kept getting red lights again, which isn’t ideal, as I couldn’t swap cards at this point. So it seems to be something at Kings Cross it doesn’t like?


Curious, I’ve never had a gateline issue when using Starling. I think this is possibly an issue to contact CS with?

I’d keep an eye out to make sure that you’re charged the correct amount and not a maximum fare as you may not have been able to tap out at Kings Cross successfully.

You can select you end station and correct your fare if needed by phoning TfL on 0343 222 1234 or logging in here if your contactless card is registered:

(Can you tell part of my job is advising our guests on public transport. :stuck_out_tongue: )


Great response - thanks @thom_horne!

I’ve not had an issue at Kings Cross before either, so I think it’s probably best to contact CS so we can take a proper look into it. Thanks @dave!


Thanks @thom_horne. I informed CS a couple of days ago, but not really had an answer as to what went wrong. It has put me off using it for tube journeys a bit though. Don’t really want to have to go correct fares with tfl each time :confused:


I was in London last week, using kings cross tube station. I made at least 10 journeys in 2 days and had no issues.


Possibly an issue with one set of gates or a single card? What gateline was it @dave?


Beautifully done, @thom_horne :grinning:


It was the ones you get to from inside the station itself (escalator behind M&S).


As someone who has used a number of contactless cards (Santander, Starling, Co-operative), Oyster and Apple Pay; in my experience all gates will glitch at some point. It’s always been the gate and never the card when it’s happened to me.

I’ve also been caught on a gate trying to get out… out of interest, when you were trying to exit did you try another gate and did it work ok?


Hi @alexandra. The first time it happened, I was just entering the tube. I tried a few different gates to no avail, then used my legacy card with no issues on the first try. On the way back into Kings Cross, I had no option but to keep trying my Starling card. On about the 3rd or 4th gate, it went through. I’ve never had a single issue with my legacy card, so it would point to a Starling issue unfortunately, be it with my account, or the physical card.


I use my Starling card most days at KGX at the northern (Picadlilly/Victoria/Northern line) gates. Never had a problem (yet!)


Thanks for the additional information. I agree it’s unusual, however, in 10 years of tube use I have seen a lot of odd gate failures on the tube. I’ve dropped you a DM - I know CS is already looking this for you! :slightly_smiling_face: