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Changes to Concessionary Travel

There has been a lot of debate (and misunderstanding) around the announcement that Reading Borough Council are changing some of the validity of their concessionary travel scheme after funding cuts from the government. The information below sets out which journeys are valid and which are not from 1 April. If you are in any doubt about whether your pass will be valid from certain stops and certain times of the day, please contact the local authority that issued your concessionary travel pass. 

What is changing?

From 1 April, Reading Borough Council are reverting back to the standard level for the English National Concessionary Travel Scheme (ENCTS), meaning concessionary passes will only be valid on weekday buses between 9.30am until 11pm and all day weekends and public holidays. Passes will no longer be valid on any 'special service' which includes our football and rugby buses.

Please note, if you hold a Reading Borough Council issued access/disability pass, you will not be affected by any of these changes and can continue to travel as normal.

examples of validity in each local authority area

In all instances, the older people's concessionary passes are not valid Monday to Fridays after 11pm - if your journey starts after 11pm, you will be expected to pay for your travel. This list is not exhaustive and certain 'special services' may be exempt at the local authority's discretion. If in doubt, please contact the local authority that issued your pass.

If your journey begins within the Reading Borough Council boundary (from 1 April)

  • Before 9.30am Monday to Friday - your concessionary pass will not be valid and you will need to pay. This is for concessionary passes issued by ANY local authority.
  • After 9.30am Monday to Friday - your concessionary pass is valid.
  • Any time Saturday, Sunday or public holiday - your concessionary pass is valid.
  • On a football, rugby or other 'special service' bus (i.e. not standard network bus) - your concessionary pass will not be valid and you will need to pay unless otherwise stated. 
For queries about concessionary travel in Reading Borough, phone Reading Borough Council directly on 0118 937 3767 

If your journey begins within the West Berkshire Council boundary

  • Before 9.30am Monday to Friday - your concessionary pass will not be valid and you will need to pay. This is for concessionary passes issued by ANY local authority.
  • After 9.30am Monday to Friday - your concessionary pass is valid.
  • Any time Saturday, Sunday or public holiday - your concessionary pass is valid.
  • On a football, rugby or other 'special service' bus (i.e. not standard network bus) - your concessionary pass will not be valid and you will need to pay.
For queries about concessionary travel in West Berkshire, phone West Berkshire Council directly on 01635 519 800 or e-mail transport@westberks.gov.uk 

If your journey begins within the Wokingham Borough Council boundary

  • From 9am Monday to Friday - your concessionary pass is valid (this is for a concessionary pass issued by ANY local authority).
  • Any time Saturday, Sunday or public holiday - your concessionary pass is valid.
  • On a football, rugby or other 'special service' bus (i.e. not standard network bus) - your concessionary pass is valid (but may not be valid for the return journey if it starts in another local authority area).
For queries about concessionary travel in Wokingham Borough, phone Wokingham Borough Council directly on 0118 9746000  

If your journey starts in Oxfordshire

  • From 9.00am Monday to Friday - (concessionary pass issued by Oxfordshire) your concessionary pass is valid.
  • Before 9.30am Monday to Friday - (for concessionary pass issued by any other local authority) your concessionary pass is not valid and you will need to pay.
  • After 9.30am Monday to Friday - all concessionary passes are valid.
  • Any time Saturday, Sunday or public holiday - your concessionary pass is valid.
  • On a football, rugby or other 'special service' bus (i.e. not standard network bus) - your concessionary pass is valid (but may not be valid for the return journey if it starts in another local authority area).
For queries about concessionary travel in Oxfordshire, phone Oxfordshire County Council directly on 0345 310 1111 

If your journey starts in Bracknell Forest

  • If your pass is issued by Bracknell Forest, you can use your pass any time of day on any day for journeys that start within the Bracknell Forest boundary.
  • Before 9.30am Monday to Friday - (for concessionary pass issued by any other local authority) your concessionary pass will not be valid and you will need to pay. 
  • After 9.30am Monday to Friday - all concessionary passes are valid.
  • Any time Saturday, Sunday or public holiday - your concessionary pass is valid.
  • On a football, rugby or other 'special service' bus (i.e. not standard network bus) - your concessionary pass will not be valid and you will need to pay.
For queries about concessionary travel in Bracknell Forest, phone JMP Consultants (on behalf of Bracknell Forest Council) directly on 0121 230 6020  

Football, rugby and special services  

To reiterate the information above for rugby, football and special services:
  • If your journey begins in Oxfordshire, Hampshire or Wokingham Borough, your pass should be valid (but please check before travelling as some services may be exempt)
  • If your journey begins in any other local authority area, your pass will not be valid and you will need to pay.