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All young people and children aged 5-21 years can apply for a card from 10 January to access the Young Persons’ (Under 22s) Free Bus Travel Scheme from 31 January.
You will need a new National Entitlement Card (NEC) or Young Scot NEC card with the valid free travel entitlement with you whenever you want to take the bus – otherwise you’ll have to pay for your trip.
If you live in Scotland and are 5-21 years old, you are eligible for a card giving you free bus travel from 31 January. Children under 5 years old already travel for free on buses and don’t need a card. Applications for cards open from 10 January. However, you are being asked only to apply at this point if you need to make essential journeys by bus.
Children and young people aged 5−21 years old will need a new or replacement National Entitlement Card (NEC) or Young Scot National Entitlement Card (Young Scot NEC) before hopping on board. Previously issued cards will not allow access to the scheme.
The Transport Scotland website provides all the information needed to apply.
Key Messages
  • Applications for the scheme opened on 10 January. However, please only apply if you do need to make essential journeys by bus from 31 January. 
  • All other eligible applicants will be encouraged to apply at a later date when the situation with the pandemic has improved. 
  • Even if you already have a National Entitlement Card or Young Scot National Entitlement Card, you must apply for a new or replacement card to be able to travel by bus for free.  
  • Information on how to apply can be found on the Transport Scotland website
  • If you do have to make an essential journey by bus, you must follow the latest Scottish Government COVID-19 guidance at all times.