Travel assistance

Free travel

In most cases, we expect children and young people to either walk or use Transport for London’s (TfL) free London bus scheme to get to their school/place of learning. TfL allows all young people under the age of 16, or up to 19 if in full time education, to travel free of charge on all buses and tramlink services in London using an Oyster photocard.

Photocard forms are available from post offices or by visiting and downloading an application form from the TfL website.  Alternatively, application forms are available at any Underground station or ticket retailer.

Travel assistance

We recognise that some children and young people may struggle to get to their school/place of learning. In these circumstances, they may be eligible for travel assistance if they meet certain criteria stated within the travel assistance policy (pdf, 603kb).

It's the applicant's responsibility to provide evidence in support of their application. If you're applying because your child is medically unable to walk, you must provide recent medical evidence.

Applying for a child aged under 16

To apply, complete the online form or download a copy of the school travel assistance application form (doc, 142kb).

A fresh application will need to be submitted to the Travel Assistance Team:

  • whenever there is change of  school/educational establishment
  • when a child starts or moves from primary education (Year 6) to secondary education (Year 7) (a fresh application is only required if the child is physically moving to another school or another site); applications must be received by the last Friday of June to guarantee travel assistance will be in place for eligible children by the first day of term in September if agreed
  • reviews - all those in receipt of assistance whilst in Year 9 will automatically have their needs reviewed to determine whether the type of assistance in place remains appropriate; the expectation is that most young people in Year 9 will move towards independent travel training to enable them to travel independently

Applying for a young person aged 16 or over

To apply, complete the online form or download a copy of the post 16 travel assistance application form (doc, 154kb).

From 2020, a fresh application will need to be submitted to the Travel Assistance Team:

  • when a young person finishes Year 11, but is remaining in education; applications must be received by the last Friday of June to guarantee travel assistance will be in place for eligible young people by the first day of term in September if agreed
  • when a young person has turned 19 and is starting a new course and whenever they subsequently change course and/or their educational provision

Page last updated: 03 July 2019