Bus Pass

Claiming a free bus pass

What is it?

From 1 April 2008 everyone over state pension age and eligible disabled people are entitled to free off-peak local bus travel anywhere in England. Local authorities can offer further benefits to their residents.

Off-peak travel is when you travel any time between 9.30am and 11am Monday to Friday, and all day at weekends and on public holidays. Some local authorities also allow travel in the morning rush hour and in some areas passes can also be used on trams, trains or taxis.

Can I get it?

All people born before 5 April 1950 qualify. If you were born after 5 April 1950 the age you become eligible is tied to changes in the State Pension age for women. This affects both men and women.

You're eligible for a disabled person's pass if you live in England and are 'eligible disabled'. This means you:

  • are blind or partially sighted
  • are profoundly or severely deaf
  • are without speech
  • have a disability, or have suffered an injury, which has a substantial and long-term effect on your ability to walk
  • don’t have arms or have long-term loss of the use of both arms
  • have a learning disability.

You're also eligible if your application for a driving licence would be refused under section 92 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 (physical fitness). However, you won't be eligible if you were refused because of persistent misuse of drugs or alcohol.

How do I claim?

Cheaper bus fare schemes are all administered locally - for more information contact your local council or bus company. If you do not live in England other rules may apply.

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