Travel to school

Transport for London (TfL) provides free travel on buses and tram services in London (zones 1-6) for children under the age of 18 who are in full-time education. 

  • Children aged 1-10 years old travel free at any time on buses and Tubes and London Overground services without a ticket or Oyster photocard.
  • Children aged between 11 and 15 will need to obtain a 10-15 Oyster photocard to travel free on buses. Child rates will apply on the Tube.
  • Young people aged 16-18 are still entitled to free bus travel as long as they remain in full-time education.

Find out more about Free and discounted travel for under 18s on TfL website

Children ages 5 to 18 could get school travel support from the council outside of the scope of the free travel offered by TfL.

Pupils who are in care will receive support with their travel from the local authority with whom they are in care.

Eligibility and circumstances where help with travel costs may be offered by us

  • The child must live in Hammersmith & Fulham. We will refer to council tax records to verify residency and further proof of address may be requested
  • The nearest available school must be more than two miles from home for pupils under eight years old and three miles for pupils aged over eight.
  • A bus journey would take more than 45 minutes for a primary school pupil or 75 minutes for a secondary school pupil, in accordance with the shortest time stated by TFL.
  • Pupils must attend their nearest available suitable school. If you didn’t apply to the nearest school of the desired type, or a place was offered but you didn’t accept it, we won’t accept your travel application. If you are not successful in obtaining a place at the nearest school of your preferred type, you must show us evidence of this.
  • If your child has a statement of special education needs please apply through the SEND Local offer website.
  • Exceptional circumstances such as a medical or social need. In these circumstances, it may be appropriate for the professional (doctor or consultant) working with the family to refer the child for EHCP assessment if they deem the child's health is so poor as to affect their normal functioning and access to education in London.
  • A child in a low-income family who is eligible for free school meals or where the parent or carer is in receipt of the highest level of working tax credit.

If you feel that your child may be eligible for assistance with travel, please complete the new applicants travel grant application form (pdf 428KB) and return it to us.

School admissions
Hammersmith & Fulham Council
145-155 King Street, London W6 9XY

school.admissions@lbhf.gov.uk

All applicants will be advised of the outcome of their application in writing within 21 working days.

Approved applications

Successful applicants will be notified in writing that a travel grant has been approved. We will carry out checks with the school to confirm that the child remains on the register and is attending.

If a grant has been made but the child is no longer attending the school please tell us. A proportion of the grant will need to be repaid to us.

Method of payment 

If your child is eligible for financial assistance, payment will be paid into your nominated bank account in two instalments. This applies to new applicants and renewals that are approved for the start of the academic year.

A form to provide your bank details will be provided with your letter. Payments will be calculated in accordance with the cheapest fare available at the time (usually this will incorporate concessions available to Oyster card users) and will cover the cost of the return home to school journey during week days and term time only.  

The first instalment will normally be made in July or August and will cover travel costs up until the February half term break. The second instalment will be issued during January or February and will cover travel costs up until the end of the summer term.

You will not normally need to complete a renewal form for the second instalment as checks will be carried out with the school to confirm that your child remains on roll and is attending.

An application must be renewed at the beginning of each academic year.

Applicants that apply mid-year as a result of moving to the borough will have their travel costs awarded based on the first date the child was placed on roll at the school but not backdated for more than four weeks.

Hammersmith & Fulham Council will not be held responsible for the loss of Oyster cards or any credit that it may contain.

Unsuccessful applications

Where you feel an application has been refused unfairly please write to us to explain the reasons and your case will be considered by us.

School admissions manager
3rd Floor, 145-155 King Street
London, W6 9XY

school.admissions@lbhf.gov.uk

If you're still unhappy with the decision after this, you can contact the Local Government Ombudsman.

Other useful information

16 to 19 bursary fund for education related costs

18+ Student Oyster card

Subsidised college transport for 16 to 19 year olds in education

Disabled Persons Freedom Pass

For further information please call the school admissions team on 020 8753 1085.

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