The Emirates Air Line is a cable car system across the River Thames. Originally designed for mass transit for commuting across the River Thames, the high and non-integrated fares probably do not encourage much locals to use it and instead, it is now functioning more as a tourist attraction, just like plenty of urban cable cars around the world including Singapore. Being a tourist, I do fit into the category of wanting to try out this cable car system for sightseeing, so, here I am.
As with most tourists, it’s probably easier to start my journey from Emirates Greenwich Peninsula, which is a short walk away from North Greenwich station on the Jubilee Line.
The Emirates Air Line Emirates Greenwich Peninsula station can be seen from the Jubilee Line North Greenwich station exit.
The Peninsula Spire, along the walk to Emirates Greenwich Peninsula station.
Heading to Emirates Greenwich Peninsula station.
An open air car park is located before the cable car station. I wonder how expensive this land is.
Hello Emirates Greenwich Peninsula station.
The ticketing counter of Emirates Greenwich Peninsula station. Emirates Air Line calls their tickets as boarding passes to match up with the airline industry.
Boarding passes can also be purchased from the vending machines.
The regular price list of Emirates Air Line boarding passes. Discounted boarding passes are available from the manned counter only with any form of Oyster cards or paper Travelcards.
The Emirates Aviation Experience located just beside the station.
Queuing up at the manned counter to buy my Discovery Experience Pass.
My discounted boarding pass for the Emirates Air Line Discovery Experience at just £8.40 (~S$14.58). This gives me a return trip on the Emirates Air Line cable car, free entry to the Emirates Aviation Experience and complimentary souvenir guide.
Except that, there was a major catch.
Trying to get into the Emirates Aviation Experience.
As I can’t seem to find an open door to enter, I asked another roving staff before the queue which told me that the Emirates Aviation Experience was already CLOSED FOR THE DAY. The last entry into the Emirates Aviation Experience was at 6.30pm, but I purchased my ticket just before 7pm.
The ticketing agent ought to be shot for selling me the ticket with no questions asked. Now I’ve paid an extra £1.40 for a return flight on Emirates Air Line.
Thankfully, the roving staff was pretty nice and apologetic about it and offered me two options – a full refund and then I’ll use my Oyster Pay as You Go but it’ll take some waiting time, or he could just allow me to go for an extra round and let me in immediately.
Seems like the extra round might be a much better choice. Thanks lad.
The long line to enter the boarding area.
The kind staff then told me to follow him, so I did, thinking that he’s going to do something with my ticket after scribbling some notes on it.
The kind staff instead flew me straight into the boarding area, bypassing everyone in the line.
After explaining to the platform staff about my issue and the special mark he made on my ticket, I was ushered on to the first empty cabin at the arrival platform, boarding first before everyone else in the queue. That was extremely nice of this staff.
The empty cable car cabin before everyone boarded.
Some information being played before departure.
Taking off from Emirates Greenwich Peninsula station.
Flying up to cross the River Thames.
Looking back down at Emirates Greenwich Peninsula station.
Crossing the River Thames.
Each cable car is liveried with a different city that Emirates fly to.
Upcoming developments at Greenwich Peninsula.
A DLR train on the Woolwich Arsenal branch.
Flying past Royal Docks.
Flying past West Silvertown DLR Station and Pontoon Dock DLR Station.
Looking back at The O2.
Descending over Royal Docks.
Looking towards DLR Canning Town Junction.
Another DLR train heading towards Canning Town.
A Myanmar Emirates Air Line cable car.
Heading down from the last pier.
Crossing over Silvertown Way and North Woolwich Road.
Flying over the sandpit of Royal Docks and Nakhon Thai restaurant.
Looking back at the skyline of The O2 and Canary Wharf.
Passing by Royal Docks.
A Singapore Emirates Air Line cable car.
Descending into Emirates Royal Docks station.
A London Emirates Air Line cable car.
Approaching Emirates Royal Docks station.
The journey from Emirates Greenwich Peninsula to Emirates Royal Docks takes around 10 minutes.
Emirates Royal Docks station has a simple layout with just a loop back to Emirates Greenwich Peninsula.
The station sign of Emirates Royal Docks station.
I didn’t get off here as the queue to return was quite long, so I stayed on board for a return loop flight, also known as the 360 Degree tour.
Overall, a rather pleasant flight with Emirates Air Line, offering great views of the new CBD of London across the River Thames. For a sightseeing cable car, it is also rather reasonably priced despite the ticketing hiccup earlier, but in the end, the service recovery part was worth it too. Now I get to explore more of the Emirates Air Line than what I thought I would have.