How you could travel for free as state pension age changes impact free bus pass rules


    While free travel rules will vary across different parts of the UK, there are some well-known UK-wide schemes. The older person’s bus pass, for example, can be received in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

    However, the rules differ across these countries.

    For instance, in England, the bus pass for free travel can be received once the individual reaches the female state pension age – something which has been raised in recent years.

    Despite the specific requirement of needing to be the female state pension age, this is regardless of whether they’re a man or woman.

    In parts of the UK it is possible to travel for free on forms of public transport at a different age.

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    For instance, people who live in London can travel for free on buses, tubes and other transport options when they’re 60 – however this is only within London.

    Meanwhile in Wales, a person can get a bus pass when they reach the age of 60.

    Those in Scotland and Northern Ireland can also apply for an older person’s bus pass once they’re 60.

    The state pension age for men and women is set to reach 66 by October 2020, ahead of further increases to 67 and 68 under current plans.


    This means that those in England may need to wait until they reach state pension age until they can travel for free.

    In terms of train travel, it’s possible to get a third off rail fares in the UK via the Senior Railcard.

    It’s something which must be bought – and applicants will only be eligible to use it when they reach the age of 60.

    Currently, these cards cost £30 for one year, or £70 for three years.

    Some may be able to access free travel on public transport via another scheme.

    This is the Jobcentre Plus Travel Discount Card, and it is available for some benefit recipients including those on Universal Credit.

    Card-holders are able to get a discount on selected rail tickets and bus journeys in England, Wales and Scotland.

    The card is provided free of charge to those who are unemployed and have been claiming Jobseekers Allowance or Universal Credit for three to nine months, if they are 18 to 24-years-old.

    For those over 25, this raises to three to 12 months.

    This particular card is valid for up to three months at any one time.

    Cards are issued by Jobcentre Plus on behalf of transport operators, and benefit recipients should contact their work coach to find out if they qualify.


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