Pop 19-21 FAQs

Pop 19-21

What’s Pop 19-21?

Pop 19-21 is the smart new way for young people aged 19 to 21 and under to pay for public transport in North East England.
Simply top up your Pop 19-21 card and use it to pay for your journeys as you make them.

Where can I get a Pop 19-21 card?

Get your Pop 19-21 card online here. The card itself is free but must be purchased with a £10 balance.

Where can I use my Pop 19-21 card?

You can use Pop 19-21 on Metro, on almost all buses in Northumberland, Tyne and Wear, County Durham and the Tees Valley, and on the Shields Ferry. Pop 19-21 works differently on Metro, bus and ferry:
•    On Metro - pay for your trip by touching in at the Metro station validator or gate at the start of your journey and touching out at the end. You’ll only pay for the journey you have made and we’ll calculate the best fare for you.
•    On buses - pay for commercial single, return and day tickets from the driver using your Pop 19-21 balance.
•    On the Shields Ferry – pay for a 19-21 Single or a 19-21 Day Ticket using your Pop 19-21 balance.

How do I top up my Pop 19-21 card?

Top up at nexus.org.uk and load your purchase onto your card at a Metro station validator, gate or ticket machine 48 hours after you buy it. Top ups will often be available the next day, but we cannot guarantee this. 
Or top up at Metro station ticket machines.

How do I check my Pop 19-21 balance?

You can check your balance quickly and easily:
•    online at nexus.org.uk (it can take up to 48 hours for this to be up to date)
•    by using the Pop card checker app (visit Google Play and search for Pop card checker)
•    at any Metro station ticket machine
•    on your bus or ferry ticket when you pay using your Pop 19-21 balance
•    on the Metro station gate or validator every time you touch out

What if my Pop 19-21 card has a negative balance?

On buses and the Shields Ferry, you can continue to travel until your balance is – £3.50.
On Metro, you can’t start a journey if your Pop 19-21 card has a negative balance (ie less than zero), so you need to top up your Pop 19-21 card balance or find another way to pay for your journey.
If your card is in credit when you touch in at a Metro station, we’ll give you one last trip to make sure you can get to where you need to be, even if making another journey will take your card into a negative balance. Your card then can’t be used again until you top it up.

What do I do if my card is lost or stolen?

We can block it so that nobody else can use it, and transfer any remaining balance onto a new Pop 19-21 card. You can do this through your online account at nexus.org.uk.

What happens to my Pop 19-21 card when I turn 22?

Once you reach 22 you won’t be able to use your Pop 19-21 card. You’ll need to use your balance before your 22nd birthday. Don’t worry, we’ll email you to remind you.
Contact
If you’ve got any queries:
•    check the help pages, FAQs and how to guides at nexus.org.uk
•    ask staff at Metro stations, or the bus driver or ferry operator
•    get in touch via nexus.org.uk/contactus
•    call 0191 20 20 747

Using Pop 19-21 on buses
How does Pop 19-21 work on buses?

On buses, you use the balance on your Pop 19-21 card to pay your normal single, return or day ticket from the driver.
Simply tell the bus driver which ticket you want to buy using the balance on your Poo 19-21 card, then touch your Pop 19-21 card onto the reader on the ticket machine. Take your ticket from the machine as normal. The cost of the ticket will be deducted from your Pop 19-21 balance. Your new balance will be printed on your ticket.
Please note that, unlike on Metro, there is no daily price cap for journeys on buses.
You may be asked to prove how old you are when you travel.

Which buses can I use Pop 19-21 on?

You can use your Pop 19-21 card to buy single, return or day tickets on all Arriva, Go North East and Stagecoach bus services right across the North East.
You can also use your Pop 19-21 card on the services listed below - and you can load the top up you've bought from nexus.org.uk onto your Pop 19-21 card on them too. Top ups should be available within 24 hours, but we recommend you allow 48 hours after purchase before you load it onto your card.
•    Scarlet Band - Durham City Park and Ride
•    Local Link - all Local Link services in Redcar and Cleveland
 

Using Pop 19-21 on Metro
How does Pop 19-21 work on Metro?

On Metro you just need to touch in at the start of your journey and touch out at the end. You do this by touching your Pop 19-21 card onto the reader on the yellow Metro station validator or the orange card reader on the Metro station gates – even if they’re open.
If you don't do this, you won't have a validated smartcard and you could be issued with a Penalty Fare Notice.
When you touch in at the start of your journey, Metro deducts the cost of an all zone single Pop 19-21 fare from your Pop 19-21 balance. When you touch out at the end of your journey, we calculate the cheapest fare for that journey and then adjust your balance.
Please note that, unlike on buses and the Shields Ferry, you can't use your Pop 19-21 card to buy tickets from Metro station ticket machines.

How much does it cost?

Pop 19-21 is around 30% cheaper than Pop PAYG fares.
You can travel as many times as you like in a day. Your card is charged each time you travel until you reach the daily price cap for the number of zones you’ve travelled in. You’ll never pay more than the daily price cap for the number of zones you’ve travelled in that day as long as you touch in and out.
Please note that if you’re using your Pop 19-21 card more than 3 or 4 days a week and you’re a student, it might be cheaper to buy a Student Metro Season Ticket. See nexus.org.uk/metro for more information.
See the current Metro Pop 19-21 fares at nexus.org.uk/metro.

What happens if I can't touch in or out?

If you can't touch in or out, your journey will be incomplete and you may be charged a maximum fare.
You should make your journey as planned, and touch in or out where you can.
You should then log into your online account and follow the instructions to 'close your journey'.

What happens if I forget to touch in or out?

If you don’t touch in or out, your journey will be incomplete and you may be charged a maximum fare.
Because we don’t know where you either started or ended your journey, we are unable to calculate the cheapest fare, so we deduct a maximum fare of up to the cost of an all zone single Pop 19-21 fare from your balance for that journey.
If you forget to touch in or out, log into your online account and follow the instructions to ‘close your journey’. You can only ask us to close your journey once a calendar month, so remember to touch in and out.

Will I need to prove how old I am when I travel?

You may be asked for proof of age when travelling on Metro or the Shields Ferry with a Pop 19-21 card; here's what we'll accept as ID:
•    ID card with the PASS hologram 
•    NHS Medical card
•    Passport or Birth Certificate (copies will be accepted, including electronic versions)
 

Using Pop 19-21 on the Shields Ferry
How does Pop 19-21 work on the ferry?

Just tell the ferry operator which ticket you want to buy, and then touch your Pop 19-21 card on to the reader on the ticket machine. Take your ticket from the machine as normal. The cost of the ticket will be deducted from your Pop 19-21 balance. Your new balance will be printed on your ticket.
Please note that, unlike on Metro, there is no daily price cap for journeys on the Shields Ferry.

How much does it cost?
 

Ferry single and day tickets are cheaper when you buy them using the balance on your Pop 19-21 card. See current Ferry Pop 19-21 fares here. 

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