About us

Delivering free bus across Scotland

The Scottish Government has worked closely with the Improvement Service, the National Entitlement Card Programme Office and Young Scot

Here’s how we contribute to deliver free bus travel.

Transport Scotland

Transport Scotland is the national transport agency for Scotland, delivering the Scottish Government’s vision for transport.

The Scottish Government has made it possible for all children and young people under 22 living in Scotland to be eligible for free bus travel throughout the country. It also works closely with bus operators to pay them for journeys made on the scheme and make sure your card works when you get on the bus.

Transport Scotland has also developed the Transport Scot Pass Collect app which allows 16-21 year olds to download free bus travel onto their existing cards.

If you need to know more about how the scheme works, the policy or legislation behind it or are having problems using it please contact concessionarytravel@transport.gov.scot

The Improvement Service

The Improvement Service (IS) is the ‘go-to’ organisation for local government improvement in Scotland and is responsible for the National Entitlement Card (NEC) scheme.

The NEC is a smart card used to access a range of national and local services across Scotland, including the national concessionary travel schemes. The Improvement Service is responsible for getyournec.scot and parentsportal.scot. These allows many people to apply for an NEC online. Find out what you need to get ready before you apply online.

If you have questions or queries about the online application process that cannot be answered on this website get in contact through getyournec.scot.

Remember: You can login at any time to see the progress of your online application.

The IS also works with local councils to help people get their cards. If you do not want to apply online or do not have the necessary documents, then you can make an application through your local council. To find out how to contact your local council about getting a card, go to Contact us.

Your Local Council

Local councils are also responsible for managing applications for the National Entitlement Card for people who live in their area. They can provide a range of ways to apply if you don’t want to, or can’t, apply online. Depending on where you live, this can include applying in person at a library or local council office, via email or over the phone or through schools. They can also help if you need to replace your card or update your details.

To find out how to get in touch with your local authority, go to Contact us.

The National Entitlement Card Programme Office

The National Entitlement Card Programme Office (known as NECPO) works with the Improvement Service to create and send your card.

Your local council’s staff get assistance from NECPO as needed.

If you need to ask NECPO a question, you can contact them here.

Young Scot

Young Scot is the national youth information and citizenship charity – providing young people with information, ideas and opportunities.

The Young Scot National Entitlement Card is free of charge to 11 to 26 year-olds living in Scotland. It can be used to access free bus travel for under 22s and discounted train and ferry travel for 16-18 year-olds and full-time volunteers. It also offers young people access to over 500 in-person and online discounts in Scotland, and over 100,000 deals across Europe. The card can also be used as legal proof of age as it’s accredited by the Proof of Age Standards Scheme (PASS) scheme, which applies across the United Kingdom. Young people can also use their cards to participate in many different types of activities and earn Young Scot Rewards points which can be exchanged for exciting opportunities and experiences.

If you have a question about Young Scot, email info@young.scot

About the scheme

Getting and using your card

Nearly one million children and young people under 22 in Scotland can now benefit from free bus travel.

Going green

The scheme is part of the Scottish Government’s plan to build a fairer, greener society.

Staying safe

New to using the bus or want to learn how to be a savvy traveller? Check out our advice for children, young people and parents on how to stay safe while travelling on bus!