Nexus is making travel for thousands of under-19s simpler and cheaper this September with new fare offers on Metro and on dedicated school bus services.
From next month the Metro 16-18 Card season ticket is being extended to cover all passengers in the age group, not just those enrolled at schools and colleges.
The change opens the door to cheaper fares for up to 12,000 young people in vocational or work-based training programmes. Card holders can buy weekly and four-weekly season tickets at half the adult price.
At the same time Nexus is bringing in a new 90p flat fare for anyone over 16 using its dedicated school bus services across Tyne and Wear.
This change will reduce the cost of travel for many sixth formers who currently have to pay an adult fare on these buses, and creates a consistent flat fare across schools in Tyne and Wear, regardless of which company operates a route for Nexus.
The fare does not apply on the wider bus network, though commercial bus companies offer their own discounts for the under-19 age group.
Tobyn Hughes, Director of Customer Services at Nexus, said: “We are committed to making travel as simple and affordable as possible for young people, using the funding we receive from local authorities.
“Nexus provides more than 250 dedicated schools bus journeys across Tyne and Wear run under contract to us. By bringing in a new flat 90p fare for anyone over 16 we are making travel cheaper for sixth formers on these services as the school leaving age rises, as well as parents accompanying younger children.
“At the same time we’re helping people in vocational and work-based training use Metro by making the Metro 16-18 Card available to all young people for the first time.”
The flat fare for over 16s on school buses has been funded by efficiency savings achieved by Nexus in the letting of contracts to bus companies to provide vehicles for the routes.
The change to the Metro 16-18 Card has been made following consultation with training providers, simply because it is the right thing to do.
Nexus announced last month that concessionary fares for under 16 passengers would be rising from 1 September. Under 16 Pop Card holders will pay child concessionary fares of 60p single and £1.10 CAT (Child Allday Ticket), an increase of 10p on each ticket.
This is the first rise in price since September 2008 and the fares remain among the cheapest in the country outside London.
The rise reflects is in line with the higher commercial child fares charged by bus companies and Metro to children without Under 16 Pop Cards, in order to ensure the concession remains affordable to Nexus, who must reimburse operators for the discount it provides.