A free bus pass can help older Britons run errands such as attending events, medical appointments, or visiting family and friends. Not having to worry about the costs of travel can create peace of mind, allowing people to go out whenever they wish. However, while the entitlement is one which is welcomed by many older people, it is vital eligibility rules are understood.
The Government has explained the rules that English residents will have to bear in mind when it comes to the free bus pass.
Its website reads: “In England, you can get a bus pass for free travel when you reach the female state pension age, whether you’re a man or a woman.
“If you live in London, you can travel free on buses, tubes and other transport when you’re 60, but only within London.”
The rule appears to date back to when state pension age parity was not yet reached – when the state pension age was at 60 for women and 65 for men.
Now, however, men and women are able to retire at the same age, but should be aware the state pension age could change in future.
The state pension age is increasing in increments, meaning it has now reached 66 with further changes set to occur.
Under current plans laid out by the Government, the state pension age for both men and women is to increase to 67 in increments.
This will happen between 2026 and 2028, potentially affecting millions of people across the country.
But of course, as the state pension age rises, so too does the time which residents of England will be forced to wait for a free bus pass.
For those who are eligible to apply for an older person’s bus pass, however, the process is a quick and easy one.
Those living in England and Wales can visit the Government’s website where entering their postcode redirects them to their local council.
This website will provide further details on how to apply for a bus pass, and check if one can receive it sooner.
On the Government’s website, there are also links to help those living in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
These individuals will also be able to apply through the designated websites to help them access a free bus pass.
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