Almost 45 million free bus journeys have been made since the Scottish Government introduced free bus travel for under 22s a year ago.
More than a third of the population, over 2.3 million people – everyone under 22, everyone over 60, and disabled people and carers – are eligible for free bus travel in Scotland.
The overall uptake from the estimated 930,000 people eligible for the Young Persons’ (Under 22s) Free Bus Travel Scheme is currently 60.7%. The uptake for those aged 12-15 is higher at 69.3% and for those aged 16-21 the figure is 71.5%.
Minister for Transport Jenny Gilruth said: “With almost 45 million free bus journeys made by under 22s across Scotland, this landmark Scottish Government policy is already helping young people and families with children cut the costs or everyday and leisure travel, while at the same time protecting our climate.
“To ensure as many young people as possible discover the benefits of free bus travel, we have delivered a national marketing campaign to increase awareness and to encourage more applications.
“I’m grateful to all our partners and local authorities for helping to encourage as many young people as possible to take advantage of this important benefit.”
Minister for Zero Carbon Buildings, Active Travel and Tenants’ Rights Patrick Harvie said: “To have seen almost 45 million journeys made through the scheme in the first year demonstrates the real appetite for sustainable travel in Scotland.
“This shows how we can tackle inequality, respond to the climate emergency and improve the lives of young people through decisive government action.
“Free bus travel is already creating new opportunities, protecting our climate while at the same time reducing financial barriers for young people right across the country.”
(Picture – Transport Scotland)