From running errands to attending appointments, a free bus pass can be invaluable to those who can use them. However, as many may already be aware, state pension age changes have impacted some people’s free bus pass age.
In the past, the UK state pension age was 60 for women and 65 for men.
However, the former was increased in recent years, meaning state pension age parity between men and women of 65 was reached in November 2018 – prior to further increases for both sexes.
These changes came in under the Pensions Act 1995, and were then accelerated under the Pensions Act 2011.
Since then, the state pension age for men and women has risen to 66.
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Under the Pensions Act 2014, the state pension age for men and women will now increase to 67 between 2026 and 2028.
Not only does state pension age need to be reached to get the UK state pension, but in parts of the UK, it is also the first time when a person can travel for free.
This is because in England, a person needs to have reached the female state pension age in order to get a bus pass for free travel.
The rules state this is whether the person is a man or a woman.
There are some exceptions where people in England may be able to get access to some free travel.
For instance, people who live in London can travel for free on buses, tubes and other transport when they’re 60.
However this can only be used within London.
There is an online tool which can be used to see if a free bus pass can be applied for prior to the UK state pension age for women.
People who live in Scotland and Northern Ireland can also get an older person’s bus pass when they turn 60-years-old.
Those who are unsure of when they are going to reach state pension age can check this online.
The “Check your State Pension age” tool is available on the GOV.UK website.
It can also be used to check what their Pension Credit qualifying age is.