At the end of 2010, South West Trains announced that full Oyster payment integration would be coming to stations by May 2011.
May has now arrived and there has been no update or official word on when this might happen. Once complete, upgraded ticket machines will be able to provide Oyster functions – it is not yet clear whether these will be available though the ticket office itself and whether SWT plans to go-ahead with its planned reduction in ticket office opening hours.
The government has already warned SWT about their plans to reduce manned ticket office hours citing that ticket machines are not an acceptable replacement for the full range of tickets, advice, refunds and other services offered from ticket windows. The Campaign for Better Transport has also responded with a list of their main objections.
Until the full Oyster integration, you can top-up Oyster Card balances for pay-as-you-go journeys at the newsagents within the station. Teddington Kiosk has offered this service since the start of May and is open most days from 6am to 7:30pm.
[Update 24th May 2011]: Oyster update from South West Trains:
“In November 2010, we announced plans to modify our ticket vending machines to allow passengers to also top up their Oyster cards at all of our stations in the London Travel zone from May 2011.
A key part of this project involves data chips being inserted into card readers on our ticket vending machines. These chips are provided by Cubic, the supplier of Oyster to Transport for London.
We were informed by Cubic of a change in the version of chip that they intended to supply. In addition, Cubic have also reported that software issues mean they are currently unable to confirm that top-up transactions are completed correctly via the card reader.
This has resulted in a delay to the project and we are working very closely with Cubic, TfL and our ticket vending machine supplier to resolve this technical issue as soon as possible.
We would like to apologise to customers who may be inconvenienced by this issue. As soon as Cubic can confirm it has resolved the technical issue, we will be able to work with our ticket vending machine supplier to complete the necessary installation work and offer the top-up facility to our customers.
In the meantime, passengers can continue to top up their Oyster cards via our website which has an easy link through to the Oyster top up facility on TfL’s website, or can check information available within our stations advising them of the nearest location to top up their Oyster card”