I commute on London's $25 billion railway line every week. It costs me $3, gets me to work 20 minutes early, and has transformed my journey.

I commute on London's $25 billion railway line every week. It costs me $3, gets me to work 20 minutes early, and has transformed my journey.
Elizabeth line railway.
An Insider reporter takes the Elizabeth line railway to work every week in London.Transport for London/Kate Duffy/Insider
  • The Elizabeth line is London's new railway, which has completed 70 million journeys since opening in May.

  • Commuting on the Elizabeth line in the morning cuts my trip by 20 minutes.

  • However, the train drops me further away from the office compared with my past commute.

The Elizabeth line is one of London's most notable recent attractions. The 60-mile-long railway opened to the public on May 24 after taking 23 years to construct and came with a price tag of $25 billion.

Elizabeth line train.
Elizabeth line train.Transport for London

Transport for London, the railways' operator, said in November that almost 70 million journeys have been made on the Elizabeth line since it opened six months ago.

An Elizabeth line train.
The Elizabeth line train's design is sleek.Philip Toscano/Getty Images

Source: Transport for London

I decided to take the Elizabeth line to work one morning to see whether it would make a difference to my 50-minute commute from West to East London. I've never looked back.

Elizabeth Line in London
Elizabeth line in London.Kate Duffy/Insider

Normally, I set off just after 7 a.m.. To get to the nearest Elizabeth line stop at Paddington, I have to take the Bakerloo line, which is more than 100 years old, for less than five minutes. It's often noisy, cramped, and stuffy at this time of the morning.

Inside of Bakerloo line tube.
Inside of Bakerloo line tube.Kate Duffy/Insider

Source: London Transport Museum

At Paddington station, I walked through a tunnel specially built for passengers going between the Elizabeth line and the Bakerloo line. It cost £1 million, or $1.3 million, per meter to build this tunnel, Crossrail CEO Mark Wild previously said.

Elizabeth line tunnel in Paddington station
Elizabeth line tunnel in Paddington station.Kate Duffy/Insider

Source: Insider

A lot of stations on the Elizabeth line have artistic ceilings inside. This one in Paddington station is completely different from other stops I've been to on the line, such as Canary Wharf and Liverpool Street stations.

Escalators to Elizabeth line in Paddington station.
Escalators to Elizabeth line in Paddington station.Kate Duffy/Insider

The train is usually already waiting at the station when I arrive. If not, I have to wait a maximum of four minutes.

Elizabeth line in Paddington station.
Elizabeth line in Paddington station.Kate Duffy/Insider

There are announcements saying when the train is scheduled to depart, while staff in high-visibility jackets are always on hand to help passengers.

Elizabeth line in Paddington station.
Elizabeth line in Paddington station.Kate Duffy/Insider

Despite it being rush hour, the platform is never overcrowded. Other stations I stopped at on my previous commute were rammed full of people as the tube is one of the most common ways to travel to work in London.

Elizabeth line in Paddington station.
Elizabeth line in Paddington station.Kate Duffy/Insider

Less than 15 minutes after leaving my flat, I'm already on the Elizabeth line train. I travel on it for three stops, passing Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, and Farringdon until I reach Liverpool Street, the other side of London.

Elizabeth line train.
Elizabeth line train.Kate Duffy/Insider

My previous commute involved taking three tube lines, including the Bakerloo, Hammersmith and City, and Northern lines to reach Old Street station. This takes around 45 to 50 minutes, and costs $3.26.

Elizabeth line train.
Elizabeth line train.Kate Duffy/Insider

There tend to be plenty of free seats in the Elizabeth line train, which was comfy and clean compared with the seating on the three tubes I used to take to work.

Seats in Elizabeth line train.
Seats in Elizabeth line train.Kate Duffy/Insider

The journey is smooth, spacious, and quiet. It's also very cool thanks to the air-conditioning onboard, which is refreshing during an early commute.

Elizabeth line train.
Elizabeth line train.Kate Duffy/Insider

The train stops for around one minute at each station, which makes boarding and disembarking stress-free.

Elizabeth line train.
Elizabeth line train.Kate Duffy/Insider

There's also WiFi available at every station during my commute, which allows me to scroll through social media and the news before my work day starts.

Elizabeth line train.
Elizabeth line train.Kate Duffy/Insider

I arrive at Liverpool Street in around 10 minutes, but have to walk about 11 minutes to get to the office — longer than the train ride! The Elizabeth line didn't drop me as close to my workplace as my previous commute, which was a two-minute walk from Old Street station to the office.

Elizabeth line at Liverpool Street station.
Elizabeth line at Liverpool Street station.Kate Duffy/Insider

After getting off the Elizabeth line train, I have to step on a huge escalator ...

Escalators exiting Elizabeth line at Liverpool Street station.
Escalators exiting Elizabeth line at Liverpool Street station.Kate Duffy/Insider

... and then another one to get to ground level. The tunnels for the new railway are up to 40 meters underground, Wild previously said.

Escalators near Elizabeth line at Liverpool Street station.
Escalators near Elizabeth line at Liverpool Street station.Kate Duffy/Insider

My commute to the other side of London cuts my travel time by 20 minutes, reduces the number of tubes I have to take, and costs me the same as my previous commute at $3.26. I prefer to take the Elizabeth line to work because it's so quick and hassle-free.

Paying by card to exit Elizabeth line.
Paying by card to exit Elizabeth line.Kate Duffy/Insider

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