It’s less well known than it should be, but job seekers can claim half-price travel on the railways and London buses with a free Jobcentre Plus Travel Discount Card, and it’s not limited to just trips to job interviews.

The railcard covers Anytime Day tickets, Off-Peak Day tickets and Season tickets for up to three months on the national rail network, and can be applied for via the Jobcentre.

The rail industry has offered the discount for some years, but reports that take-up has dropped by nearly a third since the start of the pandemic.

The card is also valid on Transport for London services. So that means within London, jobseekers can receive half-price pay as you go adult fares to travel on bus, Tube, tram, DLR, London Overground, TfL Rail (excluding between West Drayton and Reading) and most National Rail services in London.

Note that the TfL system requires an Oyster card, and if you don’t have one there is a £5 deposit required.

The Jobcentre Plus Travel Discount Card gives holders a 50% discount on journeys across Britain and anyone claiming Jobseekers Allowance or Universal Credit for 3-9 months (18-24 year olds) or 3-12 months (over 25s) can apply through their Work Coach and local Jobcentre Plus.

Before the pandemic, over 1.1 million journeys were made using the card, with the majority of journeys being with the London and South East regions. The Rail Delivery Group, which represents Britain’s train companies, is now working with Jobcentre Plus teams to further promote the card to their local areas, as well as writing to politicians across Britain asking them for their support in raising awareness in their respective regions.

For additional support getting to interviews, and the first few months of commuting to a new job, people may also be eligible for help with their fares under a scheme called Flexible support fund – details from the Jobcentre Plus.

In addition, Stagecoach, also supports the half-price ticket offer, and that covers all their subsidiaries, Megabus, Supertram and Citylink.

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4 comments
  1. Brian Butterworth says:

    “a £5 deposit required” – you seem to be CHARGED £5 for a new Oyster card these days, rather as a deposit. I’m sure it the same for all types.

    • ianVisits says:

      Nope – a deposit that is automatically transferred to the pay as you go credit after a year.

    • Brian Butterworth says:

      I must have never managed to not have my Oyster Card be stolen or lost for a whole year, I guess…

      It’s almost like TfL want you to use Contactless!

  2. James Wells says:

    TfL does also offer a half-price bus/tram discount to anyone that claims jobseeker/employment Support Allowance, the only annoying thing about it is you have to do it through the post office then they give you a card that you then have to take to a tube station so a member of staff can load the discount onto your oyster.

    https://tfl.gov.uk/fares/free-and-discounted-travel/bus-and-tram-discount

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