Bus passes and concessionary travel

A Guide to Concessionary Travel

Older residents, or those over five who have specific disabilities, can take advantage of free travel on local buses throughout Hampshire and the rest of England. This leaflet sets out who qualifies for this concession, how you can apply and where it can take you. This information is available, on request, in other formats, audio, braille and other languages.

For more information or enquiries:

For further information about bus routes and times phone 0871 200 22 33 (calls cost 10p per minute from landlines. Network charges apply)

Older person's pass

(identifiable by a blue strip down the right hand side)

Once you reach the qualifying age you are entitled to apply for a bus pass which you can use for free travel from 9am to 11pm Monday to Friday and any time at the weekends and bank holidays for journeys starting in the Hampshire County Council area regardless of where you are travelling to

Journeys starting outside of Hampshire County Council area – the remainder of England and Portsmouth and Southampton free travel is from 9.30am – 11pm Monday to Friday and any time at the weekends and bank holidays.

You can use your older persons bus pass:-

Your older persons bus pass is accepted on all registered bus services as well as the following Hampshire services:-
  • Cango (at half fare)

  • Dial-a-Ride (at half fare) (including Eastleigh Parish Links) as long as you meet the Dial a Ride scheme’s eligibility rules.

  • Park and Ride services that are registered as local bus services (though you must still pay for the parking)

You can’t use your older persons bus pass for:-

Bus passes are not valid on:-

  • services where most seats can be reserved in advance of travel such as coaches. However, you can still use your pass on the special locally booked services mentioned previously, like Dial a Ride and Call & Go
  • temporary services running for less than six weeks (eg shuttle buses to special events)
  • tourist services or services on vehicles of historical interest (eg New Forest Tour bus)
    rail replacement services
  • services where ‘extras’ (eg refreshments or car parking) are included in the fare (but remember you can still use your pass for Park and Ride services registered as a local bus service)
  • taxis (Hackney carriage or private hire)
  • rail services
  • ferries
  • voluntary car schemes
  • non-Hampshire County Council carshare schemes
  • Hedge End Park Minibus Service
  • Shopmobility.

Disabled Person's pass

(identified by an orange strip down the right hand side)

Travel is free on registered bus services any time of day for journeys starting in Hampshire County Council area regardless of where you are travelling to

Journeys starting outside of Hampshire County Council area – In Portsmouth, Southampton and the remainder of England free travel is from 9.30am–11pm Monday to Friday and any time at the weekends and bank holidays.

You can use your disabled bus pass

Your disabled persons bus pass is accepted on all registered bus services as well as the following Hampshire services:-

  • Cango
  • Park and Ride services that are registered as local bus services (though you must still pay for the parking)
  • Dial-a-Ride (including Eastleigh Parish Links) as long as you meet the Dial a Ride scheme’s eligibility rules.

You can’t use your disabled persons bus pass for:-

Bus passes are not valid on:-

  • services where most seats can be reserved in advance of travel such as coaches. However, you can still use your pass on the special locally booked services mentioned previously, like Dial a Ride and Call & Go
  • temporary services running for less than six weeks (eg shuttle buses to special events)
  • tourist services or services on vehicles of historical interest (eg New Forest Tour bus)
  • rail replacement services
  • services where ‘extras’ (eg refreshments or car parking) are included in the fare (but remember you can still use your pass for Park and Ride services registered as a local bus service)
  • taxis (Hackney carriage or private hire)
  • rail services
  • ferries
  • voluntary car schemes
  • non-Hampshire County Council carshare schemes
  • Hedge End Park Minibus Service
  • Shopmobility.

Disabled person plus companion pass

(identified by an orange strip down the right hand side and with a C+ on the top right hand corner)

Travel is free on registered bus services any time of day for journeys starting in the Hampshire County Council area regardless of where you are travelling anywhere.

The disabled pass holder can travel free on journeys starting outside of the Hampshire County Council area – the remainder of England and Portsmouth and Southampton free travel is from 9.30am–11pm Monday to Friday and any time at the weekends and bank holidays. However the companion pass is not recognised outside of the Hampshire County Council area so the companion (not the passholder) will have to pay for journeys starting outside of the County Council area with the exception of journeys starting in Wiltshire from 9.30am–11pm Monday to Friday and any time at the weekends and bank holidays.

You may be entitled if:-

  • you have specific disabilities and

  • your disability is so severe that you are usually unable to travel unaccompanied and

  • you provide a letter from a healthcare professional e.g. physiotherapist, podiatrist, nurse etc. confirming that you are unable to travel alone for medical reasons.

You can use your companion pass:-

  • if you have a disabled person plus companion pass, you can travel with or without a companion under the terms of the disabled bus pass

  • companions can only get free travel when they accompany you. They cannot travel for free on their own.

  • for children a disabled person plus companion pass will be issued on the basis of disability and not age.

Vouchers

Vouchers (formerly known as tokens) are an alternative to the bus pass. Vouchers are available to anyone who has a disability.

Vouchers are worth:-

You can have £32 of vouchers per year to use in part or full payment of your fare on:-

  • Dial a Ride

  • Call & Go

  • taxis (Hackney carriage and private hire)

  • voluntary car schemes.

If applied for part way through a year, you will receive a prorated allocation of vouchers. Not all taxis and voluntary car schemes may accept vouchers. Please check with the operator before travelling. Journeys must start or finish in Hampshire.

You cannot use vouchers on:-

  • local bus services

  • rail services or for buying railcards

  • ferries

  • Shopmobility

  • Group outings.

Rules on Eligibility

You must be a permanent resident in Hampshire, and of:eligible age or aged five or over, if you have specific disabilities.

The eligible age for an older person’s bus pass (blue stripe)

  • If you were born before 6 April 1950, you are eligible on your 60th birthday

  • If you were born after 5 April 1950 the eligible age for both women and men is the state pensionable age of a woman

To check your state pensionable age:-

Proof of eligibility you need to provide

When you apply for an older person’s bus pass, we will need a completed application form plus a current passport sized colour photograph with your name and date of birth printed on the back and proof of current, name, address and  date of birth.

Disabled person’s bus pass, disabled person plus companion pass or vouchers

To qualify as disabled (orange stripe)

You must be aged five or older, and be:-

  • blind or partially sighted, or

  • profoundly or severely deaf, or

  • without speech, or

  • have a disability, or injury, which has a substantial and long-term effect on your ability to walk, or

  • have no arms or have long-term loss of the use of both arms, or

  • have a severe learning disability, including an arrested state of development from birth, or

  • have been prevented from holding or would be refused a driving licence under Part III of the Road Traffic Act 1988, under section 92 of the Act (physical fitness) on grounds other than persistent misuse of drugs or alcohol, or

  • a member or veteran of the Armed Services who has been seriously injured in service.

If a temporary disability condition is claimed, it must meet one of the categories above and the concession will only be issued for the duration of disability described. The application must be accompanied by a healthcare professional’s report.

Proof of disability you need to provide

When you apply for a bus pass, disabled person plus companion pass or vouchers on the grounds of disability, we will need a completed application form plus a current passport sized colour photograph with your name and date of birth printed on the back and a copy of one of the following and proof of your address:-

  • Hampshire County Council Blue Badge or number
  • award letter for any Attendance Allowance
  • award letter for the Higher Rate Mobility Component of Disability Living Allowance
  • award letter for a War Pensioner’s Mobility Allowance
  • award letter for guaranteed income payment for tariff levels 1 – 8 under the 2005 Armed Forces Compensation Scheme
  • letter from the DVLA giving notice of long term refusal or withdrawal of driving licence on medical grounds (misuse of alcohol or drugs are not included under this scheme)
  • award letter for personal independence payment (PIP) where the applicant has been awarded at least 8 points or more for the PIP "Moving Around" and "Communicating Verbally" activities
  • a healthcare professional’s report e.g. physiotherapist, podiatrist, nurse etc, containing their contact details.

For a disabled person plus companion bus pass:-

  • a healthcare professional’s report e.g. physiotherapist, podiatrist, nurse etc. containing their contact details confirming your disabilities and inability to travel alone

Type of photograph you should provide

We require a recent, colour, passport sized photograph of yourself with your name and date of birth printed on the back. Your photograph, which must show your head and shoulders only, be without head gear (except on religious or medical grounds) and be front facing and alone, will be printed on the bus pass or vouchers so that you can be identified as the pass holder when travelling. We cannot accept photographs that are obscured or marked.

Using your bus pass

  • the pass must be shown to the bus driver on all journeys
  • if the bus you are travelling on has a card reader, the bus driver may direct you to hold your pass against it
  • tell the driver where you want to travel as a ticket may be issued for your journey to be recorded accurately (Some bus companies register your journey on the ticket machine or through the booking system instead)
  • If you are issued a ticket please retain it during your journey for inspection.

Using your travel vouchers

Simply use vouchers instead of cash. Hand over to the driver the number of vouchers you wish to use in full or part payment for your fare. No change will be given. Not all taxis and voluntary car schemes may accept vouchers. Please check with the operator before travelling. Vouchers can only be used up to 31 March each year of allocation. You are subject to the normal conditions of carriage and passenger regulations of the operators of services on which you travel.

Applying for your bus pass or vouchers

Application forms are available in Hampshire from most:

  • Adult and Children’s Services offices

  • Bus stations

  • District and Borough Council offices

Alternatively:-

Fill in your application form and send it to us at:

Concessionary Travel
PO Box 696
FAREHAM
PO14 9PD

You can also apply online by downloading and completing an application form and sending it to us by  post or email, along with copies of your proof and a photograph.

Renewal of pass or vouchers

We will renew your pass automatically for up to five years after checking eligible users for changes in their circumstances. This will include checks with registration services, and other databases, including the National Fraud Initiative.

We will renew vouchers automatically on 1 April each year and we will check from time to time if you still require them. You must tell us as soon as possible if you no longer need your pass or vouchers or if your appearance, address or circumstances change.

If you lose or damage your pass, we can replace it at a cost of £10. We will not charge this fee if the pass has been stolen, provided you have told the police and have received an official crime number for the incident. Lost vouchers will not be replaced. Your pass or vouchers are rendered void if they are altered or defaced in any way