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Concessionary Travel FAQs

Concessionary Travel Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. What is the National Bus Concession?
  2. Am I eligible for concessions?
  3. What exactly is off peak travel?
  4. What if I sometimes require a companion when I travel. Can they travel for free throughout England too?
  5. What is the definition of a 'local' bus?
  6. Will I be able to enjoy free travel everywhere within the UK?
  7. Is it free travel only applicable to buses?
  8. Is Park and Ride included?
  9. Is there a limit to the number of times that a pass can be used?
  10. Will my pass be issued immediately?
  11. My pass was issued by my district council. Will it still be valid?
  12. Do I have to pay for my pass?
  13. What if I don't apply for my pass?
  14. What if I lose my pass?
  15. At what age can I apply for my bus pass?

1. What is the National Bus Concession?

Since April the 1st 2008, the National Bus Concession has enabled eligible users to travel free on off peak local bus services anywhere in England. From April the 1st 2011, local responsibility for the scheme will change from the district borough councils to Worcestershire County Council.

2. Am I eligible for concessions?

Please see the web page on eligibility in the concessionary fares section for more information about who is eligible for concessions.

3. What is off peak travel?

Free travel is only available between 9.30am and 11pm on weekdays and all day on weekends and Bank Holidays. Passes will be accepted on some infrequent services before 9.30am ( PDF 60 KB). Eligible journeys are indicated on bus timetables. Alternatively, you may contact us and staff will also be able to provide a full list of services that qualify.

4. If I sometimes require a companion when I travel can they travel for free throughout England too?

Your companion may travel for free only for journeys commencing in Worcestershire between 9.30am and 11.00pm on weekdays and all day on weekends and Bank Holidays.

5. What is meant by a 'local' bus?

Registered local bus services are buses which are open to the public and registered with the Traffic Commissioner and therefore have a timetable. Buses registered as school services only and (most) National Express services are not registered local bus services. If you are unsure you can check with the bus service operator or contact us.

6. Will I be able to enjoy free travel everywhere within the UK?

No, the concession only applies within England.

7. Is free travel only applicable to buses?

The concession is available on Local Bus services and Community Transport schemes that are members of the Worcestershire Community Transport Partnership, or run by the district council. The concession on Community Transport is a subsidy of £1 per journey to be deducted from the fare payable by the concessionary passenger. An additional subsidy of a further £1 per journey is available for local residents of the Malvern Hills. The alternative provision of Transport Tokens is no longer available.

Some local authorities outside of Worcestershire do provide additional concessions but in general these are only available to their own residents. There are no additional concessions available to Worcestershire residents.

8. I don’t live in London, but I visit relatives there occasionally. Will I be able to enjoy the same benefits as a Freedom Pass holder if I travel there?

No. Because those benefits are paid for by the London authorities, only London Freedom Pass holders will be able to enjoy additional local travel on the tube, trains and trams. You will, however, be able to enjoy the statutory national concession of free off peak bus travel when visiting the capital.

9. Is Park and Ride included?

Park and Ride schemes operated on behalf of Worcestershire County Council are included although there is still a charge to the driver for car parking at the Park and Ride site.

Many Park and Ride schemes elsewhere are not included if there is a significant change for car parking included in the normal ticket price.

10. Is there a limit to the number of times that a pass can be used?

No, there is no limit.

11. Will my pass be issued immediately?

No. Your new bus pass will need to be processed and will be delivered to you by post normally within two weeks of application.

12. My pass was issued by my district council. Will it still be valid?

As long as the pass was issued after April 1, 2008, and carried the Rose Logo, it will still be valid until the expiry date that is clearly displayed on the front of the pass.

13. Do I have to pay for my pass?

No. You do not have to pay for your pass when you first apply for it. However, if you lose your pass there may be a replacement charge.

14. What if I don't apply for my pass?

If you don't apply for a pass you will not be able to travel for free and you will be required to pay the full fare for your journey.

15. What if I lose my pass?

If you lose your pass you should report this immediately to Worcestershire County Council by calling 01905 822766. There will be a replacement charge unless in exceptional circumstances.

16. At what age can I apply for my bus pass?

Prior to April 2010 the age of eligibility for an age related concessionary travel pass was 60 years of age. Since then the age of eligibility has been tied to the pensionable age for women. So as the pensionable age for women gradually increases from 60 to 65 over the ten year period from 2010 to 2020 so too will the age of eligibility for concessionary travel for both men and women.

However, the government is reviewing the current timetable for increasing the state pension age from 65 to 66. No decision has yet been made as to how the timetable will change. Any change will require the approval of Parliament.

The age of eligibility for concessionary travel is therefore:

  • For women = pensionable age
  • For men = pensionable age of a woman born on the same day

The Government Services website Gov.uk has published guidance on the change in age of concessionary travel visit https://www.gov.uk/apply-for-elderly-person-bus-pass for more information.

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This page was last reviewed 26 July 2013 at 12:58.
The page is next due for review 22 January 2015.