School transport FAQ

Frequently asked questions about home to school transport, bus passes and travel options in Suffolk.

You can find information and guidance about how to apply for a home to school pass on Suffolkonboard.

Yes, you need to provide a photo. We will require a passport-sized photograph to include on the pass.

The quickest and easiest way to provide this is to upload your photo online

Please contact our customer service team by emailing

We will provide a paper application form.

Please include your child’s name and student ID number which is provided on your offer letter. 

Have you provided the photo for the pass? This is by far the most common reason people haven’t received their pass.

You can provide this quickly and easily by uploading a photo online

Once you have uploaded your child’s photo, the soonest you will receive your pass is 10 working days. However, this may take longer during busy periods.

The soonest you will receive your pass is 10 working days following your application and payment, providing the photo form has been submitted.

However receiving your pass may take longer during busy periods. 

It costs £10 to replace a travel pass that's:

  • lost
  • stolen
  • damaged/broken

You can apply for a replacement travel pass online

Please contact us using the online Passenger Transport form

We will consider this as soon as possible. However, please be aware that this may not be considered until half-term in October 2016

Children aged between 5 and 16 years old are entitled to free home to school transport if they meet either of the following two sets of criteria:

1. Your child must be:

  • under 8 years old
  • living 2 miles or more from their nearest school
  • attending their nearest or catchment school

2. Your child must be:

  • 8 years old or over
  • living 3 miles or more from their nearest school
  • attending their nearest or catchment school

Ages are taken as of 1 September each year.

What is my family is on low income?

Children will get free transport if their parents get the maximum level of working tax credit or the child is entitled to free school meals (due to low income) and if they are either:

  • aged 8 to 11 years old and the school is over 2 miles and under 3 miles (attending the catchment, nearest, or designated school for your address)
  • aged 11 to 16 years old and the school is 2 to 6 miles away (when attending one of the 3 nearest schools for your address)
  • aged 11 to 16 years old attending the nearest school to accommodate their religion/belief and living 2 to 15 miles away

Find out more about free home to school transport on Suffolkonboard.

You can check your eligibility for school transport assistance online. 

If your child is entitled, you will receive a letter in July to provide details of this entitlement. 

Haven’t received anything in the post? The quickest and easiest way to let us know is by completing the online Passenger Transport report form.

If you are on low income you will need to contact us: 


You can contact us using the online Passenger Transport form to indicate the reasons for your request.

Please note route changes are not usually considered until the half-term holiday in October 2017

Find school bus and train timetables on

Your offer letter contains the route code. You can can reference this against our online school bus timetables.

Your child may be entitled to to transport during the academic year of their 5th birthday if they are in full-time education.

If you believe your child is entitled to free school transport, please contact us using the online Passenger Transport form

All Year 11 students were provided with a leaflet during the summer term in good time for the deadline.

This leaflet explains:

  • how to apply for transport
  • the deadline information
  • new policy changes

If your child is not eligible for free home to school transport you may be entitled to discretionary transport.

You will need to express your interest by completing an application form. Please visit one of the following pages depending on your child’s age:

This will be assessed and if we are able to provide assistance we will contact you in writing.

If we advise you that you aren't eligible for free home to school transport and you disagree with the decision, you should take the following steps:

  1. Contact passenger transport (within 20 working days of the decision date)
  2. Ask for a review

We will send you a written response within 20 working days of your request.

Wherever possible we will suggest a public bus or train service. 

The government has increased the age to which all young people in England must continue in education or training.

Young people are now required to continue until the end of the academic year in which they turn 17 from 2013 and until their 18th birthday from 2015.

Raising the Participation Age does not mean young people must stay in school. They will able to choose one of the following options post-16:

  • full-time education (e.g. school, college or home education)
  • an apprenticeship
  • part-time education
  • training (i.e. employed or self-employed)
  • volunteering full-time (defined as 20 hours or more a week)

You can find out more by reading about discretionary transport for post-16 year old students

Priority is given to arranging transport to children entitled for free home to school transport.

Applications for post-16 discretionary transport are the next to be decided.

We will then assess spare seat applications. We will write to you as soon as an outcome is reached, but transport may not be set-up and functional until the October half-term.

You will need to make other travel arrangements until we contact you. We will not be able to provide a refund for any travel costs incurred whilst you are waiting to hear from us. 

Please express your new interest by completing an application form. You can visit the following page for guidance on how to do this: Discretionary transport for post-16 year old students

When we receive your submission, we'll assess if assistance can be offered.

You may need to make your own arrangements at the start of term while you await the outcome.

Please make your payment as soon as possible in order to secure your offer of transport.

You can read the refund FAQ for further guidance if your circumstances change and you no longer require the route. 

To enquire about a refund, please contact us by emailing

If you have received your pass, please return this with a covering letter to our Passenger Transport address.

If you have not received your pass, you will need to return it as soon as it's received. 

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