Student concessions for travel in London

Student concessions for travel in London (Transport for London 18+ Student Oyster photocard)

If you are 18 or over and either live at a London address during term time, or are on a mandatory work placement in London, you may be eligible for an 18+ Student Oyster photocard.

The scheme is offered and managed by Transport for London (not the University of Bristol) and full information, including the eligibility criteria and terms and conditions (as set by TfL), can be found on their website.     

Eligibility criteria

Please note TfL only grant the photocards to students who either live in London during term-time or who are on a mandatory work placement in London:

Students who live in London

TfL’s eligibility criteria record that you must be living in London during term-time and regularly travelling to and from University (please note TfL will not consider you eligible for the photocard if you are living in Bristol during term-time and returning to London, for example, during the summer break).  This means only a very small number of our students qualify for the photocard.

The University will be asked to verify to TfL that you are a registered student and you are living in London (please note this is our only role in the process).  We will do this by checking your student record (which you are also able to view via Student Info).  If your term-time address, as recorded on Student Info, is not a London address then the University will not be able to confirm to TfL that you meet their eligibility criteria.

Students on a mandatory full-time placement in London

TfL’s eligibility criteria record that the placement must be for a minimum of 14 weeks and must be a mandatory part of your course.  When you set up your web account to apply for the photocard, you will need to select the ‘Coming to London on a work placement?’ option.  You will need to ask your Faculty Office to send an official letter confirming details of the placement to TfL.

Applying for a 18+ Student Oyster Photocard

Please note that you must pay TfL a £20 administration fee to apply for an 18+ Student Oyster photocard.  TfL will not refund this fee even if your application is rejected, so please carefully read the eligibility criteria and the full terms and conditions before applying. 

A number of recent applications for photocards have been unsuccessful as the applicants have not realised that they must be living in London during term-time (this is particularly true of applicants who have a London home address and previously had a 16+ Zip Oyster photocard).  Please note that it is your responsibility to familiarise yourself with the eligibility criteria and the full terms and conditions for the 18+ Student Oyster photocard scheme.

TfL is responsible for the scheme so any queries regarding the eligibility criteria should be directed to them.  If you are unsure whether you meet the eligibility criteria then we would recommend that you check your details on Student Info.  Please contact us (acreg-admin@bristol.ac.uk) if you have any queries regarding how the University will check your student record and verify your details to TfL.

Please remember that the number of students who qualify for the photocard is low due to the eligibility criteria.

FAQs

Q:  “Although I am staying in halls of residence/rented accommodation in Bristol, my home address is in London and I return home at weekends.  Will I be considered eligible?”

A:  No.  You must be living in London during term-time.  Living in Bristol, but returning to London on weekends will not make you eligible for an 18+ Student Oyster photocard.

Q:  “Although I am living in Bristol during-term time I regularly return home as I have caring responsibilities for a relative.  Will I be considered eligible?”

A:  No.  You must be living in London during term-time.  Living in Bristol, but returning regularly to London, regardless of the reason for your visits, will not make you eligible for an 18+ Student Oyster photocard.

Q:  “I am aged 18, living in London (and my contact address as recorded on Student Info is a London address), studying part-time and I regularly travel up to Bristol.  Will I be considered eligible?”

A:  Only if you are also receiving NHS bursary money or financial help from the University of Bristol as part of the Higher Education Council for England (HEFCE) discretionary additional support.  You will need to provide evidence of this sponsorship.

Q:  “I previously had a 16+ Zip Oyster photocard, surely this means I will be considered eligible for the 18+ Student Oyster photocard?”

A:  No.  The eligibility criteria for the two schemes are different and you will need to meet the full eligibility criteria for the 18+ Student Oyster photocard scheme to be awarded that particular photocard.

Q:  “Why is the University not supporting my application?”

A:  The University’s role is only to check that you are a registered student with a London term-time address and then verify that information to TfL.  We do not set the eligibility criteria and can only confirm the information that is recorded on your student record.     

 

Updated Dec 2016