Under 22s free bus travel scheme
From 31 January 2022, 5-21 year olds living in Scotland for more than six months of the year will be eligible for free bus travel, regardless of nationality.
Parents or guardians of 5-15 year olds must apply on their behalf. Children under five years old already travel for free on commercial bus services across Scotland and do not need a card.
To apply, you'll need to provide proof of:
- you and your child’s identity
- your address
If you are over 11, you will also need to provide a photograph.
How to apply
You can apply on the getyourNEC website.
Even if you already have a NEC or Young Scot NEC, you must apply for a new or replacement card to travel by bus for free. The free travel is not added automatically to current cards, it has to be applied for by either a parent/guardian or the young person themselves and a new card issued.
For children/young people who have an existing NEC or Young Scot NEC
All applications for free bus travel to be added to an existing card can be made on the getyourNEC website.
- children aged 5-10 must have a parent/guardian apply for their Junior NEC on their behalf, this card will not have their photograph on it
- young persons aged 11-15 will need a parent/guardian to apply for the free travel on their behalf, this card will have their photograph on it
- young persons aged 16 and over can apply to have the free travel without parental approval, they can do this by:
- applying online or by phoning 0300 100 1800 and asking for the free travel to be added to a replacement card
- downloading free bus travel onto their existing card using the Transport Scot Pass Collect app, meaning they will not need a replacement card. However, if the photograph on your NEC or Young Scot NEC is no longer a true likeness of yourself, we would recommend applying for a replacement card with an updated photograph. For more information see Free Bus travel website.
How to apply for Young Persons’ Free Bus Travel on behalf of your child under 16 who already has a card:
For children/young people who do not have an existing NEC or Young Scot NEC
For any child or young person who has never had a NEC or Young Scot card they will need to apply for one to receive the free travel. Applications can be made on the getyourNEC website.
How to apply for Young Persons’ Free Bus Travel on behalf of your child:
For young people who are over 16
How to apply for Young Persons Free Bus Travel if you’re over 16:
If you do not have the required documentation or are unable to apply online, you can contact our Customer Advice and Support service by:
- email: CustomerAdvice@scotborders.gov.uk
- phone: 0300 100 1800
Due to the current level of enquiries and applications, it may take up to 10 working days to respond to your enquiry. Applications are currently taking up to four weeks to process, dependent on relevant checks and the photograph provided.
For more information about the scheme including frequently asked questions you can visit Free Bus travel website.
You can also find out more about free bus travel on Border Buses website.