Student Travel Card in the UK
With the cost of travel constantly on the increase, it is becoming harder for travelers to get around without spending too much money. Even if you do find a good fare that is cheap, you can get hit with surcharges all over the place for excessive luggage, or for not checking in online.
Oyster cards are the cheapest way to pay for single fare journeys on the underground, buses, DLR and some trains in London. It is up to you to determine which Oyster card will best suit your needs.
If you're 18 or over, live at a London address during term time, in full-time education, or on a mandatory work placement in London, you may be eligible for an 18+ Student Oyster photocard. Or if you're 18 and live in London you may still be eligible for a Zip 16+ Oyster photocard which offers half price travel on rail services and free travel on buses.
How to apply
To apply, you must be enrolled with an institution; a school, a college or a university that is registered on the Tfl scheme. Moreover, registrations on a mandatory work placement in London and on an eligible full-time or part-time course, are also taken into consideration.
To apply for your card, you must have a colored, digital photo to upload, your student enrollment ID from your institution, your course start and end dates, a credit or debit card to pay the twenty pound fee and an active email address and contact number.
You can own one too…
In order to get a student travel card you must be a student aged above 18. Along with that, you must have residence in London during term time and must be enrolled and admitted in participating school, college or university that is registered on the TfL scheme.
You must also be enrolled on a full-time course including at least 15 tuition-led and/or structured learning hours a week (with attendance at scheduled classes being Monday to Friday only and not including evening classes) over a minimum of 14 weeks on the same course.
Below are examples that correspond to the eligibility criteria of the card:
· A full-time postgraduate student (for example, studying or writing up for 15 or more hours a week)
· A full-time student registered and studying on a higher education course with an education establishment not registered on the scheme, but on mandatory work placement in London for at least 14 weeks. You must still be under the pastoral care of your education establishment
· A sabbatical officer
· Enrolled on a part-time course lasting a period of at least 14 and either:
· A part-time student receiving NHS bursary money* or
· A part-time postgraduate student receiving financial help from your education establishment as part of their Higher Education Council for England(HEFCE) discretionary additional support (such as Student Opportunity allocation or Access to Learning Fund)^
· If your school, college or university is outside Greater London, but you live in Greater London during term time and travel regularly to and from there, you may still be eligible for this photocard.
Important note: You must provide your school, college or university with satisfactory evidence of your sponsorship before they can validate your application.
If you are getting paid for on-the-job training or you reside outside Greater London during term time, you are not eligible for this card.
How much will you save?
Below are explained points on how and where you can save if you are this card’s holder:
· If you have an 18+ Student Oyster photocard, you can get 30% off the price of adult-rate Travelcards and Bus & Tram Pass season tickets.
· If you live near your school, college or university, or only make a few journeys, you may not need a Travelcard or Bus & Tram Pass season ticket. You may be better off using pay as you go at the adult rate.
· If you have a 16-25 Railcard, you can add the discount to your 18+ Student Oyster photocard to get a 34% discount on off-peak pay as you go fares and off-peak daily caps on Tube, DLR, London Overground, TfL Rail and most National Rail services in London.
Your colour, digital photograph must be a full face photo of the applicant's head and shoulders with your full face clearly visible showing a true likeness of you. Moreover, you should not be wearing anything that covers your head unless it is consistently worn for religious or medical reasons.
If your photo doesn't meet these guidelines, your application will be rejected.
Once you've fully enrolled with your school, college or university and have got your enrolment number, you can apply up to four weeks before your course start date, or on your 18th birthday. Applications received before these dates will be rejected. If your course lasts longer than one year, you can get a photocard valid for the length of your course, or up to three years, whichever is sooner.
Lastly, an 18+ web account will be created for you when you apply and you can use it to check the progress of your application and correct any mistakes.
Once you've completed your application, ask your school, college or university to complete and send in a letter that must:
· Be on your school, college or university's letter-headed paper
· Confirm you are enrolled on a full-time course consisting of at least 15 tuition-led or structured learning hours a week, for at least 14 weeks
· Provide details of your placement and its start and end dates
· Be signed by a person in authority (for example, the registrar, bursar, university secretary or head of student services)
Late card delivery
If you've haven't received your photocard within two weeks, check your application status.
How do I use it?
Once you've added a Travelcard, Bus & Tram Pass season ticket, or pay as you go credit to your 18+ Student Oyster photocard, you can start using it. Pay as you go journeys are charged at the adult rate.
Touching in and out
To avoid paying too much when using Oyster pay as you go, make sure you touch your card on the yellow card readers. It's slightly different for each type of transport. Find out more about touching in and out.
Buying tickets and topping up
If you have an 18+ Student Oyster photocard you can top up your pay as you go credit and buy Travelcards online. Sign in to your 18+ web account for more details.
Schools, colleges and universities
For your students to apply for an 18+ Student Oyster photocard, you'll need to register first unless the students are on a work placement.
Read the full terms and conditions for education establishments to check whether your education establishment is eligible to join the scheme. Education establishments are responsible for ensuring that they and their students are eligible for the scheme and aware of the terms and conditions before signing up. There is a non-refundable registration fee of £10.
If your students are coming to London on mandatory work placements they might also be able to apply.
You can check the status of your application by signing into your 18+ card account or by calling the designated lines.
Terms and Conditions
Valid National and International student ID cards are accepted when purchasing our Student Intercity tickets. ID cards which have no expiry date but have an issue date are valid for 4 years from date of issue. Students who are still in college after the 4 years have expired will need to apply for a Student Travelcard
Second level students can avail of these fares if they are in possession of a personalized official Second Level ID card with an expiry date or a date of birth, where a date of birth is the only indication of validity the student must be 18 years or younger to use the card.
Second level students can avail of these fares if they are in possession of a valid Student Travelcard a valid International Student Identity Card (ISIC) or a valid iConnect Card.
When purchasing from a ticket machine enter the first six digits of your student ID number when requested for your Student Travelcard number (not applicable to weekly or monthly tickets).
Your student-rate travel discount will expire on your course end date and the company will be informed by your school, college or university if you're no longer eligible or your course end dates have changed. This may lead to your 18+ Student Oyster photocard being stopped.
If you've applied for a multi-year validity 18+ Student Oyster photocard, you will be issued with a photocard that is valid for a maximum of three academic years. Moreover, if your course is longer than three academic years, and you have written in your application, you will be sent a new photocard free of charge. A continued use of your 18+ Student Oyster photocard means that you agree and accept the terms and conditions of the scheme.
Important note: You can read the 18+ Student Oyster photocard terms and conditions at any time by signing into your 18+ web account.