Fare Deal for Young People

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Please note that the Combined Authority is strongly urging people to consider whether their journey is essential and to follow current Government guidance to stay at home unless:

  • you are travelling to and from work, but only where this is absolutely necessary and cannot be done from home
  • for medical reasons
  • shopping for basic necessities


A Fare Deal for Young People

We would like to know what you think of our plans to improve the system for bus fares for young people.

We plan to introduce these changes from September 2020.

Young people have told us that access to transport is an important issue to them, and can be a barrier to getting to education, work and leisure opportunities. The cost of travel and the wide range of different ticket options means that some young people don’t always feel confident they are getting the best deal or value for money and have said that ticket prices should be straightforward and easy to understand.

Current Approach

At the moment young people under the age of 19 can travel for half the adult fare on buses in West Yorkshire. If you want to travel for half fare and you are not wearing a school uniform, you need to have an Under 16 or 16-18 Blue MCard to let the bus driver know that you qualify for half fare. There are multi-operator tickets (if you are using more than one bus company) e.g. MyDay or Under 19 Weekly or Monthly. Bus companies also sell their own season tickets e.g. all day, weekly or monthly, which can be used to travel on just that company’s buses. The prices for all of these ticket options vary depending on the ticket you buy and which company’s bus you are travelling on.

The Proposals

During 2020, we will be relaxing the rules on ID so that young people will only need to show identification to prove their age if they look older than 19 to enjoy travel discounts. We are also proposing a new simplified bus fare system which means that under 19s travelling on standard bus services will be guaranteed to pay:

  • A maximum single fare for a short bus journey e.g. 60p for around a mile or three stops
  • A maximum single fare of £1.20 for longer bus journeys

Please be aware that these proposals do not affect dedicated school bus services.

Have your say

Between 23 April and 30 June 2020 we asked for your feedback on these proposals. Your comments are currently being analysed. Further information will be posted here when available.

Contact us

Via our Q&A tool: Submit your questions below

Via email: yourvoice@westyorks-ca.gov.uk

Via phone: 0113 245 7676

Please note that the Combined Authority is strongly urging people to consider whether their journey is essential and to follow current Government guidance to stay at home unless:

  • you are travelling to and from work, but only where this is absolutely necessary and cannot be done from home
  • for medical reasons
  • shopping for basic necessities


A Fare Deal for Young People

We would like to know what you think of our plans to improve the system for bus fares for young people.

We plan to introduce these changes from September 2020.

Young people have told us that access to transport is an important issue to them, and can be a barrier to getting to education, work and leisure opportunities. The cost of travel and the wide range of different ticket options means that some young people don’t always feel confident they are getting the best deal or value for money and have said that ticket prices should be straightforward and easy to understand.

Current Approach

At the moment young people under the age of 19 can travel for half the adult fare on buses in West Yorkshire. If you want to travel for half fare and you are not wearing a school uniform, you need to have an Under 16 or 16-18 Blue MCard to let the bus driver know that you qualify for half fare. There are multi-operator tickets (if you are using more than one bus company) e.g. MyDay or Under 19 Weekly or Monthly. Bus companies also sell their own season tickets e.g. all day, weekly or monthly, which can be used to travel on just that company’s buses. The prices for all of these ticket options vary depending on the ticket you buy and which company’s bus you are travelling on.

The Proposals

During 2020, we will be relaxing the rules on ID so that young people will only need to show identification to prove their age if they look older than 19 to enjoy travel discounts. We are also proposing a new simplified bus fare system which means that under 19s travelling on standard bus services will be guaranteed to pay:

  • A maximum single fare for a short bus journey e.g. 60p for around a mile or three stops
  • A maximum single fare of £1.20 for longer bus journeys

Please be aware that these proposals do not affect dedicated school bus services.

Have your say

Between 23 April and 30 June 2020 we asked for your feedback on these proposals. Your comments are currently being analysed. Further information will be posted here when available.

Contact us

Via our Q&A tool: Submit your questions below

Via email: yourvoice@westyorks-ca.gov.uk

Via phone: 0113 245 7676

Do you have any questions? Ask them here...

Q&A

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    I think that bus fare cost too much an they should be reduced.

    Zeenat asked about 1 month ago

    Travel and its costs has been shown to be a barrier to young people accessing training and employment so we need to be doing all we can to make our local buses and trains affordable to them. 

    We have spent a lot of time speaking to young people and what they have told us is they want to fairer and simpler fares right across West Yorkshire, which is what this new, Fare Deal scheme has been designed to achieve. 

    With the Fare Deal proposal, we are working with the bus companies to make bus fares simpler and more affordable.  This would mean that under 19s travelling on standard bus services will be guaranteed to pay: a maximum single fare for a short bus journey e.g. 60p for around a mile or three stops and a maximum single fare of £1.20 for longer bus journeys.

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    I think bus fares are too expensive which the prices should reduce.

    Tanya asked about 1 month ago

    Travel and its costs has been shown to be a barrier to young people accessing training and employment so we need to be doing all we can to make our local buses and trains affordable to them. 

    We have spent a lot of time speaking to young people and what they have told us is they want to fairer and simpler fares right across West Yorkshire, which is what this new, Fare Deal scheme has been designed to achieve. 

    With the Fare Deal proposal, we are working with the bus companies to make bus fares simpler and more affordable.  This would mean that under 19s travelling on standard bus services will be guaranteed to pay: a maximum single fare for a short bus journey e.g. 60p for around a mile or three stops and a maximum single fare of £1.20 for longer bus journeys.

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    will this be for school bus journey too eg. bus journey to king james high school?

    freya asked about 1 month ago

    The new simplified bus fare system is just for under 19s using standard bus services and will not affect the cost of travelling on dedicated school bus services.

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    i try not to use buses because the prices are so confusing and i don’t know how much i ever need so i just don’t bother. maybe a specific prices list on websites or even on bus stops would help?

    alex marshall asked about 1 month ago

    At the moment young people under the age of 19 can travel for half the adult fare on buses in West Yorkshire. There are multi-operator tickets (if you are using more than one bus company) e.g. MyDay or Under 19 Weekly or Monthly. Bus companies also sell their own season tickets e.g. all day, weekly or monthly, which can be used to travel on just that company’s buses. The prices for all of these ticket options vary depending on the ticket you buy and which company’s bus you are travelling on. 

    We understand why people find it confusing and we don’t want it to put you off getting the bus!   

    That’s one of the main reasons that we are working with the bus companies on this Fare Deal proposal – it aims to make bus fares more straightforward and easy to understand. 

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    Why have I been paying £1.25 for a journey of 2.5 miles

    Kirsty asked about 1 month ago

    Bus fares are set by the bus companies and this means that fares are different depending on which company you travel with and how far you go.    

    West Yorkshire Combined Authority has a ‘concessionary fares scheme’ to make transport more affordable for some groups of people.  This includes discounting fares for young people, and at the moment Under 19’s pay half the adult fare when they get the bus.   

    With the Fare Deal proposal, we are working with the bus companies to make bus fares simpler and more affordable.  This would mean that under 19s travelling on standard bus services will be guaranteed to pay: a maximum single fare for a short bus journey e.g. 60p for around a mile or three stops and a maximum single fare of £1.20 for longer bus journeys.

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    How about College students

    Sohail asked 2 months ago

    Thank you for your query. College students can get cheaper travel with the 19-25 or Student PhotoCard [external link - opens in new window]  which lets you enjoy unlimited travel right across West Yorkshire on any bus or train with huge savings on weekly, monthly or termly tickets.  

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    I can't have a contactless card n it's embarrassing on buses n not my fault they don't have chip n pin

    Sarahmaria asked 2 months ago

    Thank you for your question. Unfortunately the ticket machines on buses don’t support chip and pin payments. There are still lots of other ways to pay for bus travel, including by cash on the bus, or using prepaid tickets which you can load onto an MCard [external link - opens in a new window] or via a bus company app.

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    Are you in charge of school busses? If so what are you going to do to make them more comfortable and affordable?

    LPriestley asked 3 months ago

    Thank you for your question.

    Yes, under Co-operation Agreements with the five West Yorkshire Local Councils, the Combined Authority, plans and procures around 600 school bus services across the county. 

    School bus services are already heavily subsidised by the Combined Authority or Local Council, depending on the service. Typically, the annual price charged by operators to provide a service is around £45,000, and revenue from fares etc. covers only 50%-60% of the cost. Under 19 tickets are valid on most services and these represent good value for money. Exceptions to this are services that fall outside of the Combined Authority’s policy guidelines and, in respect of these services, parents are required to collectively meet the full cost of services. I regret that, for the reasons described above, there is no likelihood of a reduction in school bus fares. 

    With regard to comfort, operators normally use vehicles that have been cascaded from their main fleet and are fully depreciated. This helps to keep the price of school bus services at the level described above. That said, buses should still be safe and clean, and be able to maintain a comfortable ambient temperature. The Combined Authority uses a professional independent body to carry out checks on vehicles to ensure that standards are maintained. If you do have any concerns about this, you can contact the Education team by telephone on (0113) 3481122 or by email at  EducationCustomerServices@westyorks-ca.gov.uk.