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Fares: Technology

Volume 460: debated on Wednesday 9 May 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to the answer of 6 December 2006, Official Report, column 414W, on fares: technology, what progress has been made towards using smartcards as part of the national concessionary fares scheme when it is launched in April 2008. (135954)

As part of extending concessionary travel to cover journeys on all off peak local bus services anywhere in England, the Department for Transport intends to specify a standard national concessionary bus travel pass.

We are actively exploring the option of specifying that the new passes must be ITSO compliant smartcards. Our decisions about the specifications of the pass will be dependent on the outcome of a forthcoming consultation and discussions with suppliers.

ITSO based smartcards are being used by both Scotland and Wales for their national concessionary travel schemes.