National FREE travel scheme
17 January 2022
The Transport Scot Pass Collect app can now be downloaded onto your devices through Google Play or the App store alongside your card.
The Scottish Government are launching a free travel scheme on January 31st, allowing selected age groups to travel on the bus networks for free, which will include travel to college.
Any individual aged between 5-21 living in Scotland can now apply for a National Entitlement Card (NEC) or Young Scot NEC card which will allow you to access free bus travel in Scotland from January 31st. We are strongly advising all our students to apply for one of these cards.
This will allow you to travel to and from college, as well as any part of Scotland on registered bus services. This scheme is not available for premium-fare night buses or City Sightseeing buses. We suggest if you are unsure to contact the bus company you are planning to travel with.
Anyone with previously issued NEC or Young Scot NEC cards will need to apply for new cards.
Old cards do not allow you access to this benefit so you will not be entitled to free bus travel while using the old card.
Depending on your age you may need parental or guardian approval, whether a photo is needed for the ID, and which card you can apply for.
- Aged between 5-10 - Apply for an NEC card without a photo. Parents or guardians need to apply on their behalf
- Aged between 11-15 - Apply for an NEC card or Young Scot NEC card with a photo. Parents or guardians need to apply on their behalf
- Aged between 16- 21 – Apply for an NEC card or Young Scot NEC card with a photo. You will need to apply by yourself
The Young Scot NEC card is also PASS accredited, which means it can be used for proof of age, discounts, rewards and a membership.
Using your card
Using your card is simple.
All you have to do is tell the bus driver where you are going and then tap on the electronic card reader. Remember to check ahead if you are unsure if you are able to travel for free.
The most important thing about your card is remembering to bring it with you. You will not be offered free bus travel if you do not have it on you.
How to Apply
Both links for applying for National Entitlement Card and Young Scot NEC card can be found here.
If you are applying for a child and their school uses, you can apply here.
Alternatively, if you are having issues applying online, please contact your local council. They will offer support in finding alternative ways to apply.
To find out more about the free bus travel and any questions you may have, please click here.
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