Senior Citizens Travel Passes-UK

  spuds 01:36 21 Nov 2007

Our local council are now informing people that they are sending out new application forms for the forthcoming 'smartcard' Senior Citizens Travel Passes, which will cover free travel within and throughout England from 1 April 2008. Not sure how or if this regulation will cover Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Do you have a Senior Citizens Travel Pass for your own area of the country, if so, what are you expecting from the new system starting on the 1 April 2008.

Eire have had these passes for ages, and were for runners of the idea. I believe their system covers all modes of transport, which the UK apparently doesn't!.

  exdragon 04:57 21 Nov 2007

I've got one: according to the info. sent with the form for the new card, it's available in England from 9.30am to 11.30pm Monday to Friday, any time Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holidays. Bristol is slightly different - it's from 9.00am to 4.00am Monday-Friday and any time weekends and Bank Holidays provided that your journey starts in specific areas.

It doesn't include rail and express coach services. I believe the over 50s can get reduced travel on National Express coaches, though, so it's only the trains which are out of it.

  laurie53 08:16 21 Nov 2007

We've had them in Scotland for some time, and in Fife for even longer.

They cover the whole of the country, and I don't know of any restrictions, tho' I'm not sure about the rail network.

  Jim Thing 10:10 21 Nov 2007

We wrinklies in N. Ireland have had Smart Card travel passes for three years or more. We get free travel by bus or train (including Dublin Area Rapid Transport system) throughout the whole island of Ireland.

  anchor 12:42 21 Nov 2007

In the London area the over 60`s get a travel pass that provides free travel, (after 9am), within the greater London area. This covers buses, trains and the underground.

I have not heard of any extension of areas covered; but live in hope!.

  birdface 13:44 21 Nov 2007

Looks as though England are at the back of the queue again.You could travel anywhere in Scotland for years now and I think it also allows you to get reduced train and ferry travel.In Northants you can go 11 miles free then a reduced price if you go further.We don't get enough exercise they tell us,So how about throwing in free golf for the boys,And free keep fit classes for the girls.

  laurie53 14:56 21 Nov 2007

Any time now someone will ask you what's wrong with girls playing golf!

  anchor 14:58 21 Nov 2007

Just read that from 1st April 2008 the travel passes issued by your own local authority will be valid throughout England and Wales.

  birdface 17:28 21 Nov 2007

Oops I boobed there,Sorry I was only thinking about myself and of course I should have also added girls ,As I would rather play with the girls than the boys.

  tigertop2 15:38 22 Nov 2007

In Scotlasnd it depends where you live and what deals local authorities have done with the Rail business . One can travel from virtually Dundee to Edinburgh and back for £1. It's marvellous
And bus travel is totally free-and not bad for quality and reliability either.

  spuds 20:15 22 Nov 2007

Today I received my application form for the new Travel Bus 'smartcard' Pass. It would appear that the terms of the scheme for England have not been well thought out, and may well lead to confusion and perhaps future concerns.

Para from enclosed letter that I received " This new pass will entitle you to free travel at off peak times (after 0930 Monday to Friday and at any time at weekends and Bank Holidays) not only on local bus services in (my town),but also on local bus services throughout England".

There appears to be no provisions for long travel journeys unless you keep changing buses and routes out of peak hours.

It would be interesting to know how and if Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland have border restrictions and limitations to their travel schemes .The English pass is only for 'local' bus company travel and not for other modes of transport.

I was speaking to a person not long ago, who used their Eire travel pass from virtual home doorstep to a UK airport, using a combination of bus, train and plane. It was only when they arrived in the UK that they paid their first travel charge. Return journey back to Eire would also be free.

The novelty thing about my new application form, is that the scheme appears to be contracted out to a Scottish company for administration. So it could well be still in the hands of local council's and not a government administered scheme!. Initially when I heard of the changes earlier in the year, I was of the opinion that the pass would cover all modes of public transport similar to the Eire scheme, but the English version seems limited, and perhaps not fully workable. Could be wrong, have you heard different?.

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