Traveling on the London Underground can be fraught with problems, and paying for your ticket or losing your Oyster card is right up there with cramped carriages and late trains. However, a new gadget could soon put paid to at least some of the stress associated with tube traveling, as entrepreneur Jason Shulman has developed a brand new device that aims to make paying for journeys a little bit easier.
The Oysterlet is a piece of jewellery, shaped like a bangle or bracelet, that the wearer can use to pay for their travel. It doubles up as their very own Oyster card, and with a flick of the wrist, commuters can ‘touch in’ and ‘touch out’ of train stations, without fumbling around in their wallets for cash or cards.
Shulman from Hackney, East London has designed the product independently from Oyster card suppliers Transport for London, and sees his invention as a natural progression from using cards. Oyster cards were introduced to the London Transport System as a way of making paying for journeys easier and more convenient, as commuters could top up the cards from remote locations at any time.
Oyster cards work by travelers buying the cards for a refundable deposit of £5 and then they go online to register it. It can then be topped up at stations or online. They are charged a fee for their journey based on how far they have traveled and at what time of day – it’s often more cost-effective than paying for single train tickets or daily travel cards.
Originally Shulman desiged the Oysterlet for himself and for his own convenience, but then as his friends and family commented on how easy it was to use the Oysterlets, he started making them for others. Soon word spread and now he has found them to be increasingly in demand.
In an interview with the MailOnline, his PA said: ‘Jason kept finding that whenever he used it on the bus near his studio in Hackney all the kids ‘with ironic haircuts’ kept pleading to buy his.’ As a result, he has now started selling them online.
The bangles are available to order in different sizes for £70 each from www.oysterlet.myshopify.com.
The bangle works in the same way as a traditional Oyster card that must be ‘touched in’ and ‘touched out’ when travelling. Shulman won’t divulge the secret to his Oysterlet bangle, but does say on his website that each bracelet is handmade and time-consuming: ‘It’s a fiddly, noxious, time-consuming process and takes me away from work I’d rather be doing. As a result they cost £70.00 each, actually £69.00 because every Oysterlet comes pre-loaded with a pound of credit.’
And he already has his sisters’ seal of approval, as Vogue editor Alexandra Shulman has Tweeted her love of her brother’s product saying: ‘Love these. Oysterlets are the first ever pieces of jewellery to get you around London. Very cool.’
Pictures courtesy Oysterlet