London Borough of Croydon

Free travel on busses and trams

All children under 16 in full time education can travel free on bus and tram services.

All school pupils aged 11-15 will be required to carry a ‘Zip’ Oyster Photocard to travel free on buses and trams. They must touch in as they board a bus or at the tram stop before boarding a tram. If they do not they will be liable for a penalty fare. All 11-15 year olds who do not have a valid Zip Oyster Photocard must pay the full adult cash fare until they get one.

To enquire about obtaining a Zip Oyster Photocard please telephone the Oyster Helpdesk on 0845 330 9876. For further information visit the Transport for London website:

For large numbers of children, getting to school or college will be a reasonable and safe walking experience. There will, however, be a small number of children and young people with profound and complex educational needs for whom the Council will need to make arrangements to provide travel assistance. The Local Authority (LA) has noted the DFE Good Practice Guidelines for home to school transport for children with Special Educational Needs.

Children with statements of SEN / an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) may be provided with travel assistance, but it is not an automatic right. Children will be provided with travel assistance to school where this is deemed necessary in the light of the needs set out in their statements of SEN / their EHCPs. 

Further Information

  • Consideration will be given to the school being proposed by the Local Authority (LA). Parents should be aware that if they express a preference for a school further from home than another suitable school, there is no duty upon the LA to provide travel assistance.
  • The LA will continue to provide assistance as long as the child's needs are such that given all his/her circumstances, she/he continues to require travel assistance to get to school and still qualifies under the LA Transport Policy.
  • The LA will carry out an initial assessment. If necessary, additional advice may be sought from relevant agencies or professionals.
  • Currently assistance is provided through: car mileage payments to parents; Independent Travel Training, A Buddy Scheme, school buses and taxis. The LA determines the best match to the child's needs with reference to the resources available.
  • There is an appeal process if travel assistance is not agreed because your child does not qualify under the normal mileage criteria. Further details can be provided by the Travel Assistance Commissioner. 



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