to resent well off 60+ people that get free unlimited bus travel

(346 Posts)
SuzzieScotland Tue 15-Apr-14 15:21:18

I can't afford a car, so I walk, cycle or bus everywhere.

The bus costs almost a pound a mile so it is seen as a treat for me.

A yearly ticket is 1000 or if your a student you can buy a £12 bus I'd card every year and get a yearly ticket that costs 750. This seams far too expensive.

Yet I see many pensioners who run two cars using the bus to get into town or to the airport totally free despite being well off. I think their would be uproar if a 20 pound admin fee a year was applied to these bus passes. In London a year ticket is 3k but anyone over 60 gets unlimited tube and bus despite 100000s of them still in full time work.

Just seams like the young and poor are getting a very raw deal to win grey votes.

LineRunner Tue 15-Apr-14 15:23:39

I know a couple of 60+ people who complain they can't use their free bus pass to get to work....

usualsuspectt Tue 15-Apr-14 15:25:56

They have to pay half fare here before 9.30

Youdontneedacriminallawyer Tue 15-Apr-14 15:27:27

You could argue that The Old have paid for it by paying taxes.

wrapsuperstar Tue 15-Apr-14 15:27:32

Just seams like the young and poor are getting a very raw deal to win grey votes.

Yep. I think subsidised bus travel is a wonderful idea to encourage independence in 'vulnerable' groups. Sadly, there are plenty of people in need of this assistance who are not 60+, and plenty of people who are 60+ who really don't need it. It's a somewhat arbitrary line that has been drawn and as you say, a transparent vote winner above all else. I don't resent it, but it does sadden me to see the help not extended in a more sensible way.

ShatnersBassoon Tue 15-Apr-14 15:29:48

It makes no odds to me. It's a lifeline for lots, it's a nice perk for others, many don't use their pass at all. Look forward to your 60th birthday.

Rissolesfortea Tue 15-Apr-14 15:31:10

I have a free bus pass but have never been able to use it as it is too far for me to walk to the nearest bus stop.

How nice it would be to be young again and able to walk or cycle everywhere.

Navybluetutu Tue 15-Apr-14 15:32:16

Why do you think they are well off? I wonder if they've worked hard and paid taxes for many years and so should be enjoying the odd perk in their retirement years?

Bogeyface Tue 15-Apr-14 15:33:08

My parents have them and they dont need them at all. They run a nice car and could easily afford bus fares if they didnt.

They do use them, but only to get to the station to go on yet another holiday!

amicissimma Tue 15-Apr-14 15:33:44

Well-off disabled people do, too, and discounted rail travel. And children get free bus travel in London and reduced fares elsewhere, even from well-off families.

Do you have an income (outgoings might be an issue, too) figure in mind for the cut-off beyond which people are too 'well-off' for any kind of help?

MexicanSpringtime Tue 15-Apr-14 15:35:51

Ok, let's all attack each other and try to get benefits removed from one group because another group doesn't have it.

In a progressive tax system, high-earning members of society have paid in according to their income and should be entitled to the same benefits. But what really gets my goat is that some people want to pitch the young against the old, when the problem is all the money going to the bankers.

Bowlersarm Tue 15-Apr-14 15:35:55

YABU, it's very petty thing to resent.

Half the time the buses where we live are empty, it's great if pensioners can fill up a couple of seats so at least it is worth the bus drivers having a job.

Beastofburden Tue 15-Apr-14 15:36:31

They are very wasteful. The government pays a flat rate per bus pass, regardless of whether they ever get used. So with all the ppl that never use them, that money goes straight down the drain. Better if the government only bought them for ppl who would definitely get the use out of them.

SuzzieScotland Tue 15-Apr-14 15:36:42

The age has gone up to 68 now, by the time I get there I expect it will be 90+

ShatnersBassoon Tue 15-Apr-14 15:37:27

You won't want it anyway though.

glammanana Tue 15-Apr-14 15:39:03

I have a bus pass (and no I am not past my sell by date to be on Mumsnet) I love it here and I am a very up to date nanna who likes to always keep up with modern stuff.
I use my pass after 9.30 2/3 days a week and am very grateful for it,I have worked since I was 18 and was never a SAHM when my 3 where growing up so I do think I have an entitlement to one by my reckoning.
However I do think that there should be an income level when they are not issued similar to what has happened with CB,I would not come into this bracket as I am on a lower income bracket but I am not short of income I just have to be careful & budget accordingly.My bus pass helps in other ways such as being able to take my DGCs out for days during holidays when DD is working so we all benefit in the end.

iseenodust Tue 15-Apr-14 15:39:08

I think think the free bus passes are a good idea for a number of reason. They reduce social isolation in the elderly which is a huge contributor to ill-health. They subsidise many routes in rural areas that otherwise would not be viable and then no-one would have a bus service.

Sallyingforth Tue 15-Apr-14 15:41:06

So with all the ppl that never use them, that money goes straight down the drain
No, quite the opposite in fact. The money goes to the bus operator, whether the ticket is used or not. It helps to subsidise the buses and keep the cost down for fare-paying passengers.

Beastofburden Tue 15-Apr-14 15:44:10

I think that they could be issued more widely that they are, if the bus companies made use of the technology we have now, and just charged the government for journeys that ppl actually took, rather than the government buying them at a flat rate for everyone, even ppl that never even get them issued or use them.

If only the journeys that were used were charged for, it would automatically be just those who needed it that got the benefit. Wealthy pensioners might get the bus sometimes, but they will revert to the Jag for the convenience pretty soon. grin. I bet the savings would let them extend it to other groups who would benefit.

LynetteScavo Tue 15-Apr-14 15:44:50

I don't resent free travel for OAP's but I think it's a bit unfair that well off older people have a bus pass, while parents who maybe struggling financially have to pay for bus passes for their children to go to school.

I know a few retired folk who choose to ride their bikes, rather than use the bus, even if the bus is free. They leave their nice shiny cars in the garage. grin Not sure those people really need a bus pass!

Beastofburden Tue 15-Apr-14 15:46:16

True, sally but that same subsidy could be paid to the companies but taken up in practice by other groups of ppl.

Of course, that would reduce profits and therefore potentially hike prices, but perhaps that would matter less, if the subsidy were better targeted.

I'd want to know more about profit rates in bus companies, though, before I would agree that a lump subsidy is the best way to hold prices affordable for those who would benefit from that.

SuburbanRhonda Tue 15-Apr-14 15:47:57

I live in a part of the country where the bus service is rubbish, and expensive. Sometimes I'm the only fare-paying passenger on a packed bus. I do understand all the arguments for making sure older people are able to maintain independence by travelling around affordably.

But the "all or nothing" aspect is what some people object to. As a PP said, why not means test, like child benefit, so that free travel is targeted to those who really need it. And for other pensioners who don't need free travel, why not introduce a flat £1 per journey fare? Still affordable, but recognising that fact that not all pensioners need to have their travel subsidised.

Kendodd Tue 15-Apr-14 15:49:29

Just seams like the young and poor are getting a very raw deal to win grey votes.

I agree, not just with bus fares either.

I suppose if loads of old people didn't use the bus we would have no bus at all for anybody to use though.

Kendodd Tue 15-Apr-14 15:51:38

And for other pensioners who don't need free travel, why not introduce a flat £1 per journey fare? Still affordable, but recognising that fact that not all pensioners need to have their travel subsidised.

Or even a flat £1 fare for everybody and just pay poor pensioners more money in their pension so they could afford it.

SuburbanRhonda Tue 15-Apr-14 15:54:14

Or even a flat £1 fare for everybody and just pay poor pensioners more money in their pension so they could afford it.

Good idea, ken.

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