Today (Tuesday) is the expiry date for many older persons’ Freedom Passes, and holders are being urged to go online to ensure they can continue to enjoy free travel across the capital.
Over the past few months, letters explaining the renewal process have been sent to those older people in Croydon whose Freedom Pass expires on 31 March.
Negotiations have been taking place with Transport for London and the Association of Train Operating Companies for a grace period of six weeks, during which anybody presenting an expired pass will be allowed to travel.
Pass holders are being encouraged to take immediate action to renew online, a straightforward process taking only a few minutes.
Croydon is in the top three boroughs for the number of renewal applications conducted over the internet. The figures show that online applications currently number 27,447, against 9,007 requested by post.
However, the figures also reveal that some 7,340 residents have yet to make their application.
Library computers can be used, but holders should check availability. Additionally, the computer terminals in Access Croydon can be used, with no need to book in advance.
Anybody unable to renew online can return the form enclosed with their letter by post. Please note, Freedom Passes cannot be renewed at post office branches.
In addition to free cross-London travel on public transport, the Freedom Pass allows older adults, of national pension age, to travel on local bus services throughout England, at certain times, and is Europe’s most comprehensive free travel scheme.
Paul Greenhalgh, the council’s executive director, people, said: “Anyone whose older person’s pass expires on 31 March should, by now, have renewed it to enable them to continue to enjoy the free travel it offers.
“If they haven’t yet done so, now is definitely the time to act. Agreement has been reached to allow them to continue to use their pass for six weeks beyond the expiry date, but I’d urge anybody who’s yet to do so, to renew as soon as possible.”
Holders of passes that bear a 31 March expiry date and who have not received their renewal invitation letter should contact the Freedom Pass helpline on 0300 330 1433, open from 8am to 8pm, Monday to Sunday.
For more information, visit www.freedompass.org