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Answers to frequently asked questions on using KeyGo when you travel in and out of London with Southern.

Travelling with KeyGo

Can I break my journey using KeyGo?

Yes you can. At the end of the day, we analyse all your entry and exit taps and apply the most appropriate fare for the journeys you made. For example, if you travelled from Brighton to Haywards Heath, then later in the day travelled to Gatwick Airport, you would be charged a Brighton to Gatwick Airport ticket.

Can I claim compensation for delayed journeys using KeyGo?

If your journey with us is delayed by 15 minutes or more you can claim compensation under our Delay Repay scheme. With the Key Smartcard you can benefit from Auto Delay Repay. We can in many cases, tell when you may have been delayed and let you know when you're owed compensation. Just select Automatic Delay Repay in your online account preferences.

For further details please visit:

Can I use a combination of KeyGo and a paper ticket as my journey goes beyond the KeyGo area?

No. We would recommend that you buy a valid paper ticket for the whole journey. Otherwise you would need to get off a train and touch out at the end of the Key area, and then back in at the same station in order to continue your journey outside of The Key Smartcard enabled area.

Can I use a combination of KeyGo with Oyster or contactless payment as my journey involves travel on other services?

No. As above, you would need to touch out at the end of the KeyGo area, and then re-enter the station using Oyster or contactless in order to continue your journey with another rail operator within the London zones.

Can I use KeyGo on the bus?

KeyGo can only be used on Metrobus and Brighton & Hove buses. Please see the KeyGo map for the areas covered. Please allow two minutes between your exit tap at a train station and entry tap on the bus to ensure that your Key Smartcard is read correctly on the card reader.

Can I use KeyGo to cover part of my journey?

If you already hold a Smart Season ticket and you travel further within the KeyGo area, you will only be charged for the additional part of your journey by KeyGo. You must ensure you tap at both ends of your journey otherwise you may be charged an Incomplete Journey Charge.

Please check the map for where you are able to travel with KeyGo.

If you have a Smart Day Ticket, you must tap in and out at the stations you have purchased to travel between to ensure your journey is attributed to that ticket. Any further journeys you make will be charged using KeyGo.

Does everyone need to touch in and out when using KeyGo, even if I have Season ticket on my Key Smartcard?

Yes, for all train journeys you should touch in and out, even if you hold other tickets on your Smartcard. If you don't, you may be liable to pay the Incomplete Journey Charge of £25 or a Penalty Fare. We reserve the right to cancel your KeyGo account for repeated misuse. When travelling on the bus, you only need to touch in.

I forgot to touch in or out on my journey. What do I do?

If you have not touched in or out, we will email you to inform you of the missing tap. You can then log into your account to amend the incomplete journeys. You will have up to the Wednesday following the date of travel to add the missing tap, otherwise a £25 Incomplete Journey Charge will be applied to your account. You can complete 3 journeys online in a 28 day period. After this you should contact Customer Services.

Where possible, we try to auto-fill your journeys based upon your regular journey patterns. If our system has auto-filled the wrong station, you can amend this through your online account.

I have registered for KeyGo, how do I start using it?

You'll need to allow 2 hours from registration before you can make your first journey.  As part of the registration process, you will have chosen a station to start your first journey. Just touch your Key Smartcard on the card reader at a station and touch out at any of stations in the KeyGo area. After your first journey, you can start travelling from any of the stations where KeyGo is accepted as shown on the map. You are not able to start your first journey on a bus.

Once chosen, it is not possible to change the station to start your first journey. You are not able to start your first journey on a bus. 

On which train services can I use KeyGo?

KeyGo is valid on all Gatwick Express, Great Northern, Southern and Thameslink services within the KeyGo area.

KeyGo can also be used on Great Western Railway services between Redhill and Dorking Deepdene and between Warblington and Brighton.

It is not possible to start or end your KeyGo journey from Dorking Deepdene as there are no card readers at this station.

What happens if I travel on another train service or on Transport for London services with KeyGo?

KeyGo is only valid for travel on Gatwick Express, Great Northern, Thameslink and Southern services in the KeyGo area. You are also allowed to use Great Western services between Redhill - Dorking Deepdene and Warblington - Brighton.

If you travel on another train service, Transport for London services (eg. tube), or beyond the KeyGo area, and do not have hold a valid Smart ticket (ie. Season Ticket) on your Key Smartcard, you may incur an Incomplete Journey Charge or a Penalty Fare.

I have a season ticket on my Key Smartcard and regularly travel on East Midlands Trains to St Pancras, is this a problem if I add KeyGo?

We recommend that you do not sign up to KeyGo if you regularly travel to St Pancras with East Midlands Trains. This is because we are unable to receive tap data from East Midlands Trains’ gateline at St Pancras and the system will therefore always treat your journey as Incomplete. To avoid an Incomplete Charge, we recommend you do not add KeyGo to your Key Smartcard in this instance.


Can Railcard discounts be used with KeyGo?

No, this is currently not possible.

Do I get my money back if I cancel my KeyGo account?

If you have any credit on your account then we will automatically refund this as part of the account closure process. It can take up to 2 weeks for an outstanding balance on a KeyGo account to be refunded.

How are bus fares calculated on KeyGo?

Bus fares on KeyGo will be charged according to whether:

  • you have used the train that day
  • you have made any journeys within one or more keyGo bus zones
  • you have made single or multiple bus journeys
  • you have used the train and bus in more than one keyGo bus zone on the same day e.g. travelled by train between Brighton and Gatwick Airport having boarded buses either side of your train journey Journeys that have included train travel on the same day will be capped at the relevant PlusBus zone fare, providing your keyGo is accepted within that bus zone. Read more information on PlusBus. If you've travelled by bus in more than one KeyGo bus zone there will be a multiple zonal price cap which will never be more than the price of 2 bus zones added together.
  • Journeys that have not included train travel will be capped at the relevant day ticket for that bus zone. For more details, visit Metrobus or Brighton & Hove buses.

How do I add credit to my KeyGo account through Payzone?

Once you have an open KeyGo account, take your Key Smartcard to a Payzone retailer to add £5-£100 credit and your online account will be updated. You can find your nearest Payzone location for KeyGo through this link:

Please note you must still have a valid payment card linked to your KeyGo account even if you use Payzone to top-up.

How do I cancel my KeyGo account?

If you want to cancel KeyGo, log into your online account, go to the Key Smartcard section from the main menu then select KeyGo account from the left hand side. Click the 'cancel my account' button at the bottom of the screen and follow the steps.

How do I check the fare charged for my journey on KeyGo?

You can check the fares you have been charged for your journeys by logging into your online account and looking under the journey history tab. The journey history details are available for a maximum of 8 weeks.

How do I update my card details for my KeyGo?

Log in to your KeyGo account online and update with your new card details as soon as you have them. If your card expires and you use KeyGo, your keyGo account will be closed and prevent you from further travel.

How soon after I travel will my KeyGo account be debited?

Your journeys will be calculated and updated daily at 4.30am. Please ensure your bank account has sufficient funds to cover any automatic billing required before travelling.

What happens if payment for KeyGo fails?

If we're unable to take payment from the card details you provided, you'll receive an automated email from us to let you know that the payment has failed. Please ensure you have sufficient funds in your account and your card details are kept up to date. If not, we may close your KeyGo account.

What is a continuous payment authority?

To use KeyGo, you are agreeing to allow us to take automatic payment for the journeys you make, known as a continuous payment authority, against your registered debit or credit card. This means that you agree for us to pre-authorise your card and then deduct the cost of your travel on an on-going basis (the day after travel).

What is a pre-authorisation?

Pre-authorising a credit or debit card puts a temporary hold on a sum of money in the customer's account (in this case £0.01 - one penny) and typically lasts 3-5 working days. No money is actually debited when a card pre-authorisation takes place, it is simply used to check that the card is active.

What will I be charged using KeyGo?

At the end of the day, we analyse all your entry and exit taps and apply the most appropriate fare for the journeys you made. The fare will be based upon the ticket types available that day and the time you travelled on our services, we will then charge you the best available ticket(s) for your journeys. Ticket types include: Peak, Off-Peak, Super Off-Peak, Day Singles, Day Returns, Travelcard and Oyster PAYG singles, routed 'Any Permitted, 'Southern only' or 'Thameslink only'.

If you have a child Key Smartcard card, child fares will be charged.

Fares will be standard class only and it is not possible to apply Railcard discounts.

Journeys made on Gatwick Express and services between Merstham and Gatwick Airport will be charged the National Rail fare.

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