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Concessions

Elderly and disabled residents in the Strathclyde region can save money on public transport with the National Entitlement Card (NEC). The card gives holders free bus travel in Scotland and, through the Strathclyde Concessionary Travel Scheme, reduced fares on trains and Subway in the Strathclyde area.

If you live on an island or peninsula within Strathclyde you can also receive reduced ferry fares with a Strathclyde Concessionary Travel Ferry Card.

SPT support the administration of the elderly (60+) and disabled concessionary travel schemes only. Please visit freebus.scot for information regarding Young Persons' (Under 22) Free Bus Travel. For further information on the Concessionary travel scheme available within Scotland please visit the Transport Scotland website.

The Concessionary Travel card unit at Buchanan Bus Station is open by appointment only. The quickest way to apply for, or renew, an NEC is online. Information on how to do this can be found below. Alternatively, if you are unable to access online or require additional support with the NEC process, please contact us by telephone on 0141 333 3211 where we will be able to help or make an appointment if required. Lines are open Monday to Friday between 09:00 and 13:00. Please be advised we will be unable to attend to you if you do not have an appointment.

Temporary changes to peak time travel restrictions

Please note there are temporary changes to peak time travel restrictions on rail services from 2 October 2023 to 28 June 2024. Please see Rail Concession Fares section below for further information.

Elderly (60+) and Disabled National Entitlement Card (NEC)

To qualify for one of these types of NEC you must live in Scotland and be disabled or aged 60 or over. For more detailed information on who qualifies for concessionary travel read Transport Scotland’s guide.

Applications can be made up to two weeks before your 60th birthday.

You can apply online at getyournec.scot if you have a smartphone, tablet or computer with a camera or webcam.

To complete the process online you will require digital copies (photo or scan) of the following documents:

  • Proof of identity (such as a Yoti account, valid photo driving license or current passport)
  • Proof of current address (such as council tax bill, utility bill, bank statement)
  • A “passport-like” photograph of yourself for the card

Frequently asked questions are available if you need support to apply online.

If you are unable to apply online then applications can be made in person at your local Post Office. Services may vary at Post Office Local branches – please check directly with the Post Office.

To complete the process in person you will require the following documents:

  • Proof of identity
  • Proof of current address
  • A recent passport size photograph

For a full list of acceptable proof documents for identity, address and photographs please see Proofs | National Entitlement Card.

You can apply online at getyournec.scot if you have a smartphone, tablet or computer with a camera or webcam.

To complete the process online you will require digital copies (photo or scan) of the following documents:

  • Proof of identity (such as a Yoti account, valid photo driving license or current passport)
  • Proof of current address (such as council tax bill, utility bill, bank statement)
  • Proof of eligibility (please visit the Transport Scotland website for full details of the eligibility criteria and acceptable proof documents required)
  • A “passport-like” photograph of yourself for the card

Frequently asked questions are available if you need support to apply online.

For a full list of acceptable proof documents for identity, address and photographs please see Proofs | National Entitlement Card.

For more information on the qualifying criteria and acceptable proof of eligibility documents for a disabled with companion NEC please see the Transport Scotland website.

Alternatively, if you are unable to complete your application using getyournec.scot, as you do not have a valid photo driving licence or current passport, SPT will accept your application by email or post (due to demand it may take up to four weeks for your application to be processed).

Please complete and send an application form, along with photographed/ scanned copies of your supporting documents (proof of identity, address, eligibility and passport style photograph) to:

Email: freebus@spt.co.uk

Post: Concessionary Travel, 10 Killermont Street, Buchanan Bus Station, Glasgow, G2 3NW

Applicants who are providing non photographic identification (such as a birth certificate) to support their application must also ensure the photo referee declaration section of the application form is completed by an approved referee, please see the National Entitlement Card (NEC) website for the NEC photo referee guide.

Proof of eligibility is required to issue a new disabled NEC. For more information on the qualifying criteria and acceptable proof of eligibility documents for a disabled NEC please see the Transport Scotland website.

You can renew your disabled NEC online at getyournec.scot if you have a smartphone, tablet or computer with a camera or webcam.

Alternatively, if you are unable to complete the renewal process online using getyournec.scot, SPT will accept a photographed/ scanned copy of your proof of eligibility document by email or post to the details below:

Email: freebus@spt.co.uk

Post: Concessionary Travel, 10 Killermont Street, Buchanan Bus Station, Glasgow, G2 3NW

Please quote the cardholders name, disabled NEC card number, date of birth and full address on the correspondence.

Please note: SPT no longer sends renewal forms to card holders. Please provide an acceptable proof of eligibility document at least five weeks before the card expires to allow for processing and a new card to be issued. SPT cannot be held liable for gaps in entitlement.

E-mail: freebus@spt.co.uk
Address: Buchanan Bus Station, 10 Killermont Street, Glasgow, G2 3NW.
Telephone: 0141 333 3211

NB: When corresponding with us, please quote your date of birth, address, postcode, and current/most recently issued card number.

Opening times: Monday to Friday - 09.00 to 13.00.

*The in-person booth is temporarily closed, in the first instance please contact us by telephone, email or post

The Travel Card Unit is closed on public holidays.

National Entitlement Card holders can travel on all local bus and scheduled long distance coach services throughout Scotland for free at any time of day and for any number of journeys.

Restrictions:
Concessionary travel is not available for tours, excursions, night services or other special services where a premium rate is charged.

If you live in Scotland and are aged 5-21 years old you are eligible for free bus travel with a valid NEC or Young Scot NEC. For more information and how to apply please visit freebus.scot.

If you are under 22 and disabled you can choose between the Disabled Persons’ scheme or the Young Persons’ Free Bus Travel scheme. Disabled cardholders who reside within the Strathclyde area will receive will the benefit of the Strathclyde Concessionary Travel Scheme, which provides local discounted travel on trains and Subway with a valid Disabled NEC.

Please note: If you have a Disabled Companion NEC, which lets someone travel for free with you, then you should not change to the Young Persons’ Free Bus Travel scheme as it doesn’t allow anyone to travel with you for free.

Temporary changes to peak time travel restrictions on rail services:
As part of a Scottish Government funded trial, peak ScotRail rail fares will be removed between 2 October 2023 and 28 June 2024. This means that until the end of the six-month trial period, peak rail fares will be reduced to the level of their off-peak equivalent, and rail fares currently valid only at off-peak times will become valid all day.

To ensure consistency with this trial, the current peak time travel restrictions in place for Strathclyde Concessionary Travel Scheme rail journeys will also be removed for the entire six month duration*.

* Applies to Strathclyde Concessionary Rail Journeys only.

Please note, Scottish Government funding does not include SPT Subway, therefore peak-time travel restrictions on Subway will remain in place.

Rules and Restrictions:
To qualify for the concessionary fare, all concessionary rail journeys have to start and end at a station inside the Strathclyde Scheme's boundaries.

A valid ticket must be purchased which covers the entire journey length for the trip which is being made i.e. origin station to final destination station.

There is no peak time restriction for Ferry Travel Card holders connecting via rail with a specified ferry.

Rail journeys which start in one rural zone and end in a second rural zone are charged at 2x the basic concession fare. For more information on rural zones, see Scheme Guidance  and Scheme Area Map.

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Concession travel on Subway now uses Pay As You Go (PAYG) credit on your National Entitlement Card.
You can load PAYG credit at the Subway ticket office or Subway ticket vending machine. When using your NEC for Subway travel, you can travel all day for the price of a return ticket. If you are using Subway Park and Ride please ask at the ticket office.

Restrictions:
Holders of National Entitlement Cards for persons aged 60 or over cannot take advantage of the scheme on Subway services before 09:00 on weekdays (see exemptions below).

There is no evening-peak travel restriction on Subway.

Exemptions:
There is no peak time restriction if the cardholder is travelling to a hospital appointment which they can only get to by travelling between 06:00 and 09:00. Written proof, in the form of an appointment card or other clear written evidence regarding the time and date of an appointment at a Health Board hospital, must be produced on request. This will include at time of ticket purchase and on mode of travel where ticket inspections are undertaken.

How to Apply for a Strathclyde Concessionary Travel Ferry Card:
People aged 60 and over who live on an island or peninsula within Strathclyde apply at their local Post Office. Proof of age and of address (as per https://www.nec.scot/proofs ) and a colour passport-style photo are required.

Eligible disabled applicants are automatically issued with ferry travel cards by SPT when their National Entitlement Card applications are processed.

Restrictions:
To qualify for concessionary Ferry fares*, you must reside permanently (or own and pay council tax in respect of a second home) on one of the islands covered by the scheme or reside on the Cowal or Rosneath Peninsulas.

For an SPT Ferry Card covering a second home, you must provide a copy/scan of your most recent council tax notice for your second home and complete the second home application form.

Exemptions:
No peak time restrictions apply

People in possession of a National Entitlement Card with both the ‘S’ symbol and the ‘+ 1’ symbol are entitled to have a companion travel with them on the same journey.

Companion travel is charged at half the standard* single or return fare, except in cases where the concession fare is greater than half the standard fare, then the concession fare is charged to the companion also.

The travelling companion must commence and terminate their journey at the same locations as the cardholder.

For companion travel on Subway, only single or return tickets can be purchased.

* A standard fare is the full fare charged by the operator for any single or return journey.  Standard fares exclude any discounted tickets such as off-peak tickets, multi-journey tickets, smartcard discounted tickets, books of tickets, travel cards or season tickets.

Rail

*Standard fare does not include off-peak discount or any other reductions.

Rail Concession Fare

Less than 10 miles

Single

£1.00

Return

£1.50

Rail Concession Fare

More than 10 miles

Single

Half standard fare*

Return

Half standard fare*

Subway

Subway Concession Fare

Single

£1.00

Return

£1.50

Ferry

Ferry Concession Fare

Less than 10 nautical miles

Single

£1.00

Return

£1.50

Ferry Concession Fare

More than 10 nautical miles

Single

£2.00

Return

£2.90

FAQs

The National Entitlement Card for people who live in Strathclyde has an ‘S’ next to the council logo to show that person can travel on the Glasgow Subway and by rail within the Strathclyde scheme area at the relevant concession rates.

It is not necessary to complete another application form, simply contact us by email or phone and a new card will be dispatched to your home address. Please note that it can take up to 10 working days to receive a new card, so we recommend that you speak with the Lost Property departments of your local transport operators or the Police in the first instance.

It is not necessary to complete another application form, simply contact us by email or phone and a new card will be dispatched to your home address. You can hand your card over to the driver on any bus service that participates in the NEC scheme and they will issue you with a temporary 7-day Pass which entitles you to the same free bus benefits as your NEC. Note that this does not automatically request a replacement card – you MUST request a replacement card from the Travel Card Unit by email or phone.

When you email or phone us to request a replacement card – please let us know you had Subway PAYG credit on your NEC. The Subway Smartcard team will then contact you to arrange any outstanding amount to be loaded onto your replacement NEC.

You will only be issued with a temporary 7-Day Pass by a bus driver when you hand over to them a faulty or damaged NEC which is otherwise valid (i.e. is within date and carries your photograph). Please note the SPT Travel Card Unit is not able to issue these passes.

To update your records please send us proof of your new address, such as a home utility bill or bank statement dated within the past three months. These can be scanned/photographed and sent by email to freebus@spt.co.uk, or posted to the Travel Card Unit (please quote the cardholder’s date of birth, card number and previous address, including the postcode).

The elderly (60+) NEC does not have an expiry date. There is no requirement to renew this card.

Visit the National Entitlement Card page and Transport Scotland website for details on eligibility criteria and how to apply.

Proof of eligibility is required to issue a new disabled NEC. For more information on the qualifying criteria and acceptable proof of eligibility documents for a disabled NEC please see the Transport Scotland website.

You can renew your disabled NEC online at getyournec.scot if you have a smartphone, tablet or computer with a camera or webcam.

Alternatively, if you are unable to complete the renewal process online using getyournec.scot, SPT will accept a photographed/ scanned copy of your proof of eligibility document by email or post to the details below:

Email: freebus@spt.co.uk

Post: Concessionary Travel, 10 Killermont Street, Buchanan Bus Station, Glasgow, G2 3NW

Please quote the cardholders name, disabled NEC card number, date of birth and full address on the correspondence.