Monday was the busiest morning on the Tube since March 2020, Transport for London has said.
Between 7am and 10am there were 831,000 taps into a station, with the busiest hour – 8am to 9am – seeing 332,000 people using the network, up 22% on Tuesday last week.
People also tapped into London’s bus network 860,000 times between 7am and 10am on Monday 6 September.
The busiest hour was again 8am to 9am, which saw 321,000 fares registered, up 71% on last week.
Compared with pre-pandemic numbers, usage is up 45% on the Tube and 64% on buses, TfL said.
For many, Monday is the first day back after the summer holidays, with children returning to class for the first time since July.
Traffic data for London also suggest commuting is returning to pre-pandemic levels.
TomTom live traffic data put congestion in London at 61% at 8am – just below 2019 levels of 63%.
On the same day in 2020, congestion was 49%.
At 9am, congestion levels were higher than in 2019 – at 58%. That compares with 34% the same day last year and 43% the year before.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan said: “I am delighted that Tube ridership continues to increase as more people return to the office. Our city – and our country – depends on London’s economic recovery.”
Liverpool, Birmingham and Belfast were all close to, or above, 8am traffic levels on the same day in 2019, according to TomTom.
However other major cities – including Cardiff, Sheffield, Leeds and Manchester – remained below pre-pandemic levels.
The rate of people returning to work may also increase after the furlough scheme ends on 30 September.