Post-16 travel assistance

If you are a student over the age of 16 in full time education, we may be able to provide assistance with transport.

You may qualify for school travel assistance if you are:

  • aged 16 to 18
  • in full time-education (12 hours or more a week)
  • living more than 3 miles away from your nearest school or further education establishment

How much does it cost?

All students who are entitled to school travel assistance will need to contribute £600 a year towards the costs of their transport.

Charges apply to all students whether they are attending mainstream, special or specialist post-16 education provisions, independent schools or further education colleges and other suitable training establishments.

The only exceptions are if:

You are on a low income

Parents or carers in receipt of one of the following will qualify as low income:

  • Income Support
  • child entitled to free school meals
  • Income-Based Jobseeker's Allowance
  • support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Child Tax Credit, provided they are not entitled to Working Tax Credit and have an annual income as assessed by the Inland Revenue that does not exceed £16,190
  • guaranteed element of State Pension Credit
  • receipt of the maximum level of Working Tax Credit

For 16 to 18 year olds meeting these grounds, the cost is £300 a year.

You are on a low income and your child has a special educational need or disability (SEND)

Where parents or carers of a 16 to 18 year old student qualify on the grounds of low income (as listed above) and the young person:

  • has an education, health and care (EHC) plan which necessitates travel assistance
  • is attending their nearest suitable further education setting which is named in the EHC
  • lives within the administrative boundary of Northamptonshire and more than 3 miles from their nearest suitable educational establishment

the cost will be free of charge.

We will, in the first instance, explore whether a parent or carer will provide transport and be remunerated for their fuel costs, if the student is eligible.

Young adult learners (aged 19 to 25) subject to an education, health and care plan 

Free travel assistance will be provided to a young adult learner (not being a person of sixth form age) where:

  • the local authority has secured the provision of education or training and the provision of boarding accommodation for an adult learner aged under 25
  • they are subject to an EHC plan
  • it is considered necessary to facilitate that person’s attendance at the place of education or training

Please note that this policy does not relate to young adults who are not in education or training and who do not have an education, health and care plan. Information about transport provision for other young adults can be obtained from the Adult Social Services website.

While we would continue to encourage the participation in education and training by those over compulsory school age but under 19 and those aged 19 to 25 with an EHC plan, young adult learners would be expected to meet the cost of travel between home and the provider at which they are receiving education or training except in the circumstances as above.

Apply for post-16 school travel assistance

We will only transport to educational settings at the beginning and end of a typical academic day.

You can use the form to give proof of low income or an EHC plan.

Other transport support for post-16 students

We will also take receipt of 16 to 19 bursary funding into account in assessing an individual’s need for financial help with transport. Where a person receives a benefit to facilitate their mobility needs (e.g. Personal Independence Payment (PIP) or Disability Living Allowance, where this includes the higher rate mobility element) we may explore whether this can be used to support their transport needs to and from education or training for which a mileage rate will be paid. Each case will be considered on its own merits.

Partnership working

We are working together with key partners to enable access to further education and training courses for 16 to 18 year olds. The following colleges offer support:

Northampton College

Northampton College sell subsidised bus passes where a student is eligible (under 19, more than 3 miles from site of study, on a full-time course).

Students can apply to the bursary for transport support where there is a household income below £26,000 or income based benefits.

They also sell stagecoach bus passes for use on public bus services.

Moulton College

Moulton College operates a comprehensive subsidised transport network throughout Northamptonshire, allowing students access to the main college and all of its out centres.


If an application for free travel assistance is declined, parents may appeal by submitting a form to escalate the matter to a Stage One Appeal.