UNDER 22's CAN NOW APPLY FOR FREE BUS TRAVEL SCHEME
SNP MSP for Midlothian North and Musselburgh, Colin Beattie, has welcomed the opening of the application process for free bus travel for young people, under the age of 22 years old, in Midlothian and East Lothian.
From today, all young people and children aged 5-21 years old in Midlothian and East Lothian can apply for their new or replacement National Entitlement Card (NEC) or Young Scot NEC to access the scheme from 31 January 2022. The scheme, extending free bus travel to everyone aged 22, builds on the Scottish Government’s commitment to providing free bus travel to all under-19’s in Scotland which started in August 2021.
SNP MSP, Colin Beattie, has welcomed the initiative which is set to benefit around 930,000 young people across Scotland and pointed to research from Transport Scotland indicating that 70% of young people would use public transport more frequently if it was free.
The scheme will be delivered in partnership with Transport Scotland, the Improvement Service, the National Entitlement Card Programme Office (NECPO), Young Scot, local authorities and bus operators.
Commenting SNP MSP for SNP MSP for Midlothian North and Musselburgh, Colin Beattie, said:
"I am delighted that applications are now open for young people in Midlothian and East Lothian, under the age of 22, to apply for free bus travel across the country. This is a hugely significant commitment from the Scottish Government that will benefit hundreds of thousands of young people across the country.
"Young people in Midlothian and East Lothian are rightly challenging their politicians to take bold actions to create a sustainable future for them and free bus travel is an example of what can be done to rise to this challenge.
"Making bus travel free for under 22's is not only important for helping tackle the climate emergency but it will take pressure off young people's finances and improve their access to education, leisure, and work.
"Whilst we continue to live through the pandemic, we all recognise that essential travel must be prioritised so I want to specifically encourage those children and young people with essential journeys to make to apply now.
“The SNP Scottish Government is once again making an investment in our young people’s future, supporting them to have the best possible start in life and creating the fairer, greener Scotland that we want to build.”