Concessionary Travel

Find out if you're eligible for discounted travel and how to sign up.

This page covers information on

  • Freedom Passes
  • Blue Badges
  • Taxi Cards
  • Dial-A-Ride
  • Access to Work
  • Motability Scheme
  • Hospital Travel Assistance
  • Hospital Reimbursement for Travel Costs

Freedom Passes

Freedom Passes are managed by London Councils.

There are three different Freedom Passes: 

  • Older Person's - to get an Older Person's Freedom Pass, you have to they live in Newham and are aged 66+
  • Disabled Person's - to get a Disabled Person's Freedom Pass, you have to evidence they meet one of the six national criteria;
  • Veteran's - to get a Veteran's Oyster Card, you have to prove that you get ongoing payments via the War Pensions Scheme or Guaranteed Income Payment under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (this includes widows, widowers and dependants). 

To apply for a Freedom Pass visit their website or call their helpline 0300 330 1433.

If you meet the right criteria, Newham Council will be told to give you a pass.

Freedom Passes are free and need to be renewed every five years. 

If you are looking to get a Disabled Person's pass, you will need to give full details of the disability and how it affects your day-to-day living with supporting medical / Adult Social Care evidence.

Blue Badges

Blue Badges are a UK-wide scheme.

To apply for a Blue Badge, please visit their webpage or ring 0300 200 781.

To make an application, you will need: 

  • a colour passport-sized and quality photo
  • proof of address (e.g. a Council Tax or utility bill dated within the last three months)
  • proof of identification (e.g. a driving licence or passport)

You will also need extra evidence, such as a letter confirming:

  • You get Disability Living Allowance (Higher Rate Mobility) OR
  • You get Personal Independence Payment with a point score of eight or above for 'Moving Around' or 10 for 'Planning and Following a Journey'

If they need a copy of either of these letters, please ring 08457 123 456.

If they do not have this evidence, they can instead show:

  • an up-to-date letter of your diagnosis
  • proof of specialist consultations, ongoing treatment and / or clinic attendances, or referral for these clinics
  • proof of prescribed medication relevant to their condition
  • an up-to-date Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP)
  • Social Care - Care and Support Plan
  • up-to-date letter from a professional involved in their care

If you meet all the right criteria, Newham Council will be told to give you your blue badge. There is a £10 administration fee for this.

Taxi Card

A Taxi Card offers discounted travel in licensed taxis and private hire vehicles (minicabs) to London residents with severe mobility impairments or who are severely sight impaired. It enables members who have difficulty using public transport to get out and about. 

Taxi Cards are managed by London Councils. If you meet the right criteria, Newham Council will be told to give you the card.

Newham residents with a Taxi Card are able to get 144 journeys a year. You need to pay the first £2.50 of each journey. The Council pays the rest up to £10.80. 

You should try to find other ways of getting out and about where possible, such as Dial-a-Ride as the Taxi Card should only be used where it is really needed.

For more information, please visit the Taxi Card webpage or call 020 7763 5001 - Option 1.


Transport for London (TFL) manages Dial-a-Ride.

If you have a Taxi Card, you automatically are able to use Dial-A-Ride, but you need to fill out their form.

You can have a Dial-A-Ride membership if you are:

  • a Taxicard member
  • getting the Higher Rate Mobility Component of Disability Living Allowance
  • getting the Standard or Enhanced Mobility Rate of the Personal Independence Payment
  • registered blind or partially sighted
  • aged 85 or over
  • getting a Higher Rate Attendance Allowance
  • getting a War Pension Mobility Supplement

If you meet the right criteria, Newham Council will be told to give you a membership. 

Dial-a-Ride services don't take place in the evenings and there are limited spaces at weekends. It's good to use Dial-a-Ride in the week and Taxi Card at weekends / in the evenings. 

For more information please visit their website or ring 0343 222 777 (8:00am - 8:00pm, seven days a week).

Access to Work Help with Transport

Access to Work helps people to get or stay in work if they have a physical or mental health condition or disability. The support they give you will depend your needs.

The travel support they may give you could include:

  • adaptations to your vehicle so you can get to work
  • taxi fares to work or a support worker if you cannot use public transport

It does not matter how much a person earns and an Access to Work grant does not affect any other benefits and does not need to be paid back.

For more information, visit their website or ring 0800 121 7479.

Motability Scheme

The Motability Scheme helps people to get mobile by exchanging their mobility allowance to lease a new car, WAV, scooter or powered wheelchair.

Residents can check they are eligible by visiting their website. 

If you meet all the criteria, you will be told to contact a Motability Dealer and arrange an appointment with their Motability Scheme specialist. 

You can then choose to exchange all, or part of your mobility allowance to lease a vehicle of your choice. Payments are taken from your allowance every four weeks, then paid directly to Mobility by the benefits payment agency. A standard lease is over three years, or five years if leasing a WAV.

For more information visit their website.

Hospital Travel Assistance

The NHS can help you to get to and from the hospital, including out-patient appointments. 

The Council will consider the need for an escort, in line with section seven of the Care Act.

Barts Hospitals provide patient transport for those who can't come to their hospital appointments by public or private transport because of their medical condition. 

Patient transport can be booked via the Barts Call Centre on 020 7767 3344. Lines are open Monday to Friday, between 9am and 5pm. Please aim to book transport at least 72 hours in advance of your appointment date. 

For more information, please visit their website or ring 020 7767 3344. 

Hospital Reimbursement for Travel Costs

Barts Health patients eligible can get help with hospital travel costs, including ULEZ charges.

You can now make a claim by emailing the cashier’s team (

Eligible patients can still claim by post or in person.

Find out more on the Barts website.