Review of concessionary scheme
Free bus travel ‘may be offered to young’
The minister is looking at a number of options, including a delay to the current qualifying age, as the budget for concessionary fares is reduced.
The £208m budget for concessionary travel is being cut by £9.5m in the next financial year.
Mr Yousaf has announced a public consultation and says a future scheme may provide concessionary fares for apprentices and others “most in need”.
Free bus travel is currently available to anyone over the age of 60 and there is speculation that future generations may have to wait longer to qualify, particularly as more people extend their working lives.
The minister said there were no plans to remove the pass from those who already have it.
“If you’ve got a free bus pass you will continue to have that free bus pass and continue to be able to use that pass in the way that you currently are,” he said.
“We want to extend the national travel scheme to Modern Apprentices, to those on a Job Grant, so that some young people, that are in the most need, can also benefit.
“But clearly people are living longer, they are staying in work longer – which are all good things – but it does add a pressure.
“So we will consult on the long-term sustainability of the national concession travel scheme and we look forward to hearing people’s views.”