School Travel Service

School bus

When choosing a school place, it is important to think about how your child, student or adult learner will travel to and from school each day. Most families organise their own home to school journey, like walking, cycling, using public transport or lift-sharing with other families.

However, we have a duty to support children, students or adult learners with their school journey, providing they meet specific criteria for this support.

View our guide to the School Travel Service for parent carers, co-produced with the Parent Carer Forum.

Remember: Assessment for travel assistance will be determined once a school place has been allocated by Southampton City Council at a suitable school. Means tested applicants and those applying under exceptional circumstances need to apply before the start of each new school year.

Who is eligible for the School Travel Service?

This depends on the age of the child, student or adult learner, the distance from home to school, and whether any ‘extended rights’ apply. If you are unfamiliar with these terms you may wish to read more about the UK education system.

Children attending a mainstream school

There are two age groups that determine what criteria apply for children:

  • In Reception and under eight years old
  • Over eight years old and under 16 years old

Find out more about mainstream travel support.

Students and adult learners between 16–25 years old

There are two types of support available to students who live in Southampton and are of sixth form age. This is managed via a different application process.

Find out more about travel support for students and adult learners between 16–25 years old.

Children or students with an Education, Health and Care Plan

Applications involving those with an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) will be assessed by the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) team.

Find out more about travel support for those with an EHCP.

If you do not qualify or meet the requirements you may wish to view the alternative options.

Policy and eligibility criteria

For more information you can read our School Travel Policy and eligibility criteria:

Document Type Size
School Travel Service eligibility criteriapdf120.5 KB
Home to School Transport Policy 2023-2024pdf910.9 KB
School Travel Service and Post-16 Travel Service Policy 2024-2025pdf640.3 KB

Contact us

If your child or young person is eligible for mainstream school travel support find out how to apply. You can also view the latest updates for this service or read our frequently asked questions.

Children and young people with disabilities or special educational needs

If your child or young person has a disability or special educational needs, you can view the eligibility criteria to find out if you are eligible for the School Travel Service.

To discuss eligibility further, you can contact us by:

Co-ordinating travel arrangements

If you require assistance regarding co-ordination of travel arrangements for the School Travel Service, please contact us by:

Help with other issues

If you are experiencing issues with the School Travel Service, please call our dedicated helpline on 023 8083 2419.

Suppliers wishing to work with us can find out more on Information for School Travel Service suppliers.

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